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The Western Nevada Regional Science & Engineering Fair traces its roots back to 1964, when it was under the direction of Dr. Ken Johns of the College of Education at the University of Nevada. Under Johns and then Dr. John Trent, another College of Education professor, the fair grew from about 100 to 200 participants to nearly 600 by the time the reins were turned over to Dr. Tom Lugaski, administrator of the Mackay School of Mines and Engineering Keck Museum, in the late 1980s.


During Lugaski's directorship, participation grew even more, to more than 1,000 participants by the time the well-liked and well-respected campus fixture died unexpectedly of a heart attack in 2000.


Ochs, along with Dr. Julie Ellsworth, took over as director of the fair following Lugaski's death, with Ochs assuming the position by himself in 2002.


Today, the event has reached a highly successful level of close to 1,500 projects, which each March pushes Lawlor's capacity to its limit. The science fair features two awards ceremonies for inventions and science fair projects.


The goal of the Western Nevada Regional Science & Engineering Fair (WNRS&EF) and Lemelson Young Inventors Challenge (LYIC) competitions is to promote scientific thinking, creativity, and innovation. The competitions are an opportunity for students to exhibit their creative and critical thinking abilities and compete for recognition. Student-athletes have opportunities to show their stuff during athletic competitions; the WNRS&EF and LYIC are like a big tournament for student-scientists.




Executive Director

George T. Ochs

ochsg@charter.net


Scientific Review

Dr. Richard Simmonds

rsimmonds@unr.edu


Head Judge

George T. Ochs

ochsg@charter.net


Volunteers

Kathy Heslop

Tahoe6063@gmail.com


Public Relations

Heather Emmons

h.emmons@sbcglobal.net


Display & Safety

Cathy Hackler

catrickhackler@yahoo.com



Advisory Board

Dwight Egbert

University of Nevada, Reno


Dr. Julie Ellsworth

Truckee Meadows Community College


Dr. Steve Ellsworth

Sierra Nevada College


Heather Emmons

Nevada Resources Conservation Service


Erin Macaluso

Depoali Middle School


Cathy Hackler

CC Meneley ES


Kathy Heslop

UNR Graduate Student


Sam Macaluso

Retired Nevada National Guard & WCSD


Dr. Richard Vineyard

Nevada Department of Education


Dr. Regina Tempel

College of Science, UNR



Board of Directors

President

George T. Ochs


Treasurer

Dr. Richard Simmonds,

University of Nevada, Reno

Emeritus Director of Laboratory Animal Medicine


Secretary

Jim Bryn,

Bishop Manogue Catholic High School (retired)


Director

Ron Geyer,

North Valleys High School


Nevada Science Fair