Start Early. Start well.

Matthew Hansen Columns

Matthew Hansen, an award-winning Nebraska columnist, is now a managing editor at the Buffett Institute. He is tasked with telling the stories of the Institute's work and early childhood care and education in Nebraska. On this page, which will be redesigned and named in early 2020, you will find columns, interviews, videos, and photos focused on the work of the Buffett Institute and its partners as we strive to make Nebraska the best place in the nation to be a baby.

Read about Matthew's hiring.


  • October 28, 2019
The Audacious One: After 50 Years in the Field, Sam Meisels Is Taking a Big Swing at Solving Some of Early Childhood's Biggest Problems

Sam Meisels's face is flushed. His tie is slightly askew. He's nearing the end of a speech to state board of education leaders from across the United States. His voice is rising...


  • September 23, 2019

Cattle Ranchers, Police Chiefs, and Business Leaders: An Unlikely Group of Allies is Fighting for Early Childhood Education

The police chief came because he can't forget the family he once knew too well. The father of the family sold drugs. Bryan Waugh, then an Omaha narcotics detective, would often go to his house to arrest him. When he did, he would sometimes see children in the home...


  • September 13, 2019

Nebraska's Early Childhood Teachers Love Their Jobs, But They Can't Afford Them—and It's Hurting Nebraska
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