Jan 14, 2020 5:54 PM

Nebraska appoints child welfare watchdog as next ombudsman

Posted Jan 14, 2020 5:54 PM
Julie Rogers
Julie Rogers

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - A state official who serves as a watchdog over Nebraska's child welfare system has been chosen as the next state ombudsman.

Nebraska lawmakers voted 46-2 on Tuesday to hire Julie Rogers, the inspector general of child welfare since 2012.

Rogers replaces Marshall Lux, who retired last month at age 70 after serving in the position since 1981.

The Ombudsman's Office is a state agency that takes complaints from the public about state agencies. It operates independently of governors and the courts, and advises the Legislature when lawmakers want information about problems within state government. The office also produces public reports that highlight problems within the government.

Rogers has held a variety of legal roles in the past, including work with the Madison County Public Defender's office and the Legislature's Judiciary Committee.

Another candidate for the job was Carl Eskridge, a longtime deputy state ombudsman and Lincoln City Council member. Several lawmakers said they supported Rogers for the job but voiced frustration that Eskridge wasn't chosen.