As Nebraska Folklife (NF, concludes a year filled with diverse events and successful fundraisers, the organization expresses a heartfelt appreciation to everyone who supported and attended in any way. In 2023, marking its 20th year, Nebraska Folklife expanded on creating connections across Lincoln, Omaha and Nebraska as a whole, participating in events such as Cars, Culture, & Coffee, Give to Lincoln Day, New American Arts Festival, Celebrate Heritage and the annual co-hosting of Dia De Los Muertos.

Nebraska Folklife would like to dedicate this press release to Gwendolyn Meister, fondly known as Gwen, who was a trailblazing force and founding member since 2003. Gwen’s legacy transcends her role as Executive Director; she embodied the heart and soul of the organization. With a Master’s in Cultural Anthropology, Gwen devoted over two decades to preserving Nebraska’s cultural heritage as a folklorist.

Gwen’s impact reached far and wide, from assisting Rufus White in achieving the NEA’s National Heritage Fellowship in 2014 to her contributions to the film “Dutch Hop.” Her visionary leadership extended to projects like Cultural Trunks, showcasing the diverse cultures within Nebraska. NF expresses deep gratitude to Gwen for her passion, wisdom and vibrant spirit. Her legacy continues to shape the organization’s commitment to cultural appreciation. Thank you, Gwen!

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