2014 Award Winners
2014 Award Winners
Martin “Marty” Bilek is a lifelong resident of Omaha, where he lives with his wife Jane. Marty obtained a B.S. degree in electronics engineering technology from UNO, and he is also national incident management system certified. Marty started as a deputy sheriff with Douglas County in 1975 and during his time there held numerous assignments including patrol, investigations, and chief deputy. After 38 years with the sheriff’s department, Marty retired to become Mayor Jean Stothert’s chief of staff.. Marty has also served on the Omaha/Douglas County dot.com Board of Directors, the Domestic Violence Coordinating Council, and the 911 Users Group.
Deborah Circo, Ph.D. has had a rewarding career serving the community. She obtained her B.S. in criminal justice from UNO in 1981 and started her professional career working in the mental health field. In 1987 she became a juvenile probation officer and supervised one of the largest areas in the Omaha area. During this time she continued her education and obtained a master’s degree in social work at UNO.
In 1994, Deborah was invited to direct the social work department at Munroe-Meyer Institute (MMI). She obtained a second master’s degree in psychology from UNL (2000) and a Ph.D. in psychology from UNL in 2004. As an assistant professor and director of social work at MMI, Deborah has written and been awarded over $800,000 in federal, state, and local grants focused on improving the lives of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD).
When not working, Deborah can be found at the Elmwood Park golf course with her husband Paul. She is a tireless golf enthusiast who has only been playing for about ten years and it shows. She hopes one day to play well enough to win, or place, in any type of charity golf event. She also enjoys long walks in the Dundee neighborhood with the family’s Belgian Malinois and playing with the family’s two Yorkies on dog hill at Memorial Park.
Mike Behm was appointed executive director of the Nebraska Commission on Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice by Governor Heineman in May 2005. He served in that capacity until retiring in January of 2014. Crime commission staff maintain and track information on crimes and the people who commit them, set jail standards, and inspect detention facilities throughout the state at all levels. As director, Mr. Behm oversaw not only the crime commission staff but also the training of Nebraska’s law enforcement officers, and administered state and federal grants for criminal justice and crime victims programs.
Prior to his time at the crime commission, Mr. Behm served the State of Nebraska as a state trooper. He retired from the state patrol as a lieutenant colonel in 2003. He has worked with the U.S. Attorney’s Office on Project Safe Neighborhoods, was a substitute teacher with the Malcolm School District, and an adjunct professor for Bellevue University prior to his appointment.
Rosalyn "Ros" Cotton was named awarded the 2014 Alumni Achievement Award. Ms. Cotton provided the state of Nebraska 30 years of service in in law enforcement and corrections. Among her many accomplishments, Rosalyn started her career as an officer and progressed through the ranks, including spending time as a unit case manager and as a senior parole officer. During her tenure as a senior parole officer, she became a key resource person in identifying and effectively intervening gang activities. Ms. Cotton holds a bachelor’s degree in pre-law and sociology from Wayne State College and a master’s degree from UNO. She has taught criminology and sociology courses for a number of local universities. Ms. Cotton was appointed to the Board of Parole in 2005 by Governor Dave Heineman and reappointed to that post in 2008.
Kim Retzlaff was born and raised in Fremont, Nebraska, and is a graduate of Fremont High School. She received her B.A. in 1987 and her master's degree in criminal justice in 1992, both from UNO. Kim worked for a year as a police officer in the Ralston Police Department before becoming a Douglas County probation officer and helping to develop the first intensive supervision program for the state probation system, which was implemented in Douglas and Sarpy counties. After one year as an instructor in Midland College's sociology department, she joined the Omaha Police Department in 1992. In 2000, Kim was promoted to the rank of sergeant and supervises the department's domestic violence squad – her true passion. Kim also possesses a passion for teaching and since 2006 has taught classes at UNO. Kim is a proud mom of two children- Newman and Nolan.