Nebraska's oldest active CPA gives CBA $1 million

Charlotte and Del Lienemann, 1941
Charlotte and Del Lienemann, 1941

Delmar “Del” Lienemann Sr. at age 92 is Nebraska’s oldest active certified public accountant. Through the Lienemann Charitable Foundation he has established a $1 million permanently endowed chair to help ensure future generations receive an outstanding accounting education at UNL.

Lienemann credits his education at the UNL College of Business Administration for greatly enhancing his career in business, enabling him to be a successful CPA, real estate developer, retailer, investor and civic leader. In response, he established the Delmar A. Lienemann Sr. Chair in Accounting with a gift to the University of Nebraska Foundation. The chair will be awarded by the university to a faculty member in the School of Accountancy.

“This gift from Del Lienemann Sr. will impact the School of Accountancy by helping us build a world-class faculty and deliver a first-class accounting education to our students,” said Donde Ashmos Plowman, the James Jr. and Susan Stuart Endowed Dean of UNL College of Business Administration. “Del told me that his education enabled him to manage numbers well, which led him to help others in this community and this state. This gift will be an example so that others can do the same.”

The endowed chair enables the university to provide an annual stipend for salary, research and program support. The award recipient will be selected based on teaching and research ability and accomplishments as well as academic promise. Recipients will receive five-year appointments, renewable for an additional five-year term. The gift of the endowed chair also supports the University of Nebraska’s current Campaign for Nebraska fundraising initiative and one of its priorities to increase support for faculty members, in an effort to both retain and recruit top teachers and researchers.

Lienemann, who lives in Lincoln, graduated from the University of Nebraska in 1941 and married Charlotte Peck in 1944. Together they worked as a team to raise seven children, run successful businesses, serve in elected office, travel the world and volunteer for countless local charitable organizations. Their lives were enriched by the many people and events they encountered along their journey, Lienemann said.

Lienemann started his own accounting office in 1945 in downtown Lincoln and purchased a gift shop for Charlotte to manage after she graduated from nursing school in Omaha. These two businesses helped him meet Chris and Ethel Abbott, who owned many business ventures. The Abbotts became clients and eventually very good friends with the Lienemanns.

Lienemann is president and CEO of the Ethel S. Abbott Charitable Foundation, which Ethel Abbott created to carry forth her philanthropic interest in providing grants to benefit the Lincoln, Omaha and Western Nebraska communities. Upon her death in 1992, her $22 million estate went to the foundation.

Lienemann continues to work from his office at the D.A. Lienemann CPA firm in Lincoln. An active volunteer throughout his career, he is chair of the Lincoln Symphony Foundation Board. He has been recognized as the International Sertoman of the Year, and the national fraternity of Beta Sigma Psi named its highest award after him, the Lienemann Achievement Award.

The University of Nebraska Foundation is an independent, nonprofit organization that has connected the dreams and passions of donors to the mission of the university for more than 75 years. In 2011, donors gave a record $172 million in gifts for scholarships, academic programs, medical research and other priorities at the university. The foundation’s current fundraising initiative, the Campaign for Nebraska: Unlimited Possibilities concludes in 2014. For more information, visit

- Robb Crouch, NU Foundation