Omaha District Court Judge Tom Otepka to Retire

Omaha District Court Judge Tom Otepka to Retire

Thursday, July 15, 2021

Omaha District Court Judge Thomas A. Otepka, is retiring on September 10, 2021.

In his letter to the Governor and the Chief Justice, Otepka wrote, “I was sworn in as a Douglas County District Court Judge over eighteen years ago. It has truly been an honor and privilege to serve.”

As his legacy, Otepka leaves the legal community with the creation of the Bench Media Committee through the Nebraska State Bar Foundation. He championed the establishment of the committee whose members are committed to ensuring a professional and positive working relationship among Nebraska lawyers, courts, and the media. Fostering transparency in courtrooms throughout the state, Otepka and a handful of his fellow judges authored draft rules allowing cameras in courtrooms which the Nebraska Supreme Court ultimately approved.

Otepka is a judge of the Douglas County Adult Drug Court and has served as presiding judge for the Douglas County District Court on a rotating basis. He has been involved with numerous judicial committees for both the Supreme Court and Nebraska District Judges Association. He has occupied all offices of the judge’s association, including the position of president in 2020.

Otepka will have served the citizens of Douglas County since 2003, having been retained in his position by area voters, most recently in 2018.

The first step in replacing Judge Otepka will be for the Judicial Resources Commission to call a meeting to determine whether, based on judicial workload statistics, his retirement creates a judicial vacancy on the district court in the 4th Judicial District (Omaha).

News Reporters:

Judge Otepka’s Judicial Profile: Hon. Thomas A. Otepka | Nebraska Judicial Branch 

Replacing a Judge in the Nebraska Trial Court System