March 14, 2018

Profiles in Membership

Mary E. VandenackMary E. Vandenack

Mary is founding and managing member of Vandenack Weaver LLC in Omaha, Nebraska. She is an experienced practitioner in the areas of tax, benefits, private wealth planning, asset protection planning, executive compensation, equity fund development, business and business succession planning, tax dispute resolution, international tax, state and local tax, and tax-exempt entities.

In the RPTE Section, Mary serves as co-chair of the Future Practice and Guidance Task Force and the Economics and Technology of the Practice Committee, as vice-chair of the Small Firm Practice Committee and of the Asset Protection Planning Committee, and as a member of RPTE’s Standing Committee on Planning.

She recently served on the ABA Commission on the Future of Legal Services and has been active in the ABA’s Law Practice Division for most of her career. She is currently serving on the Division’s TECHSHOW Board and is a member of its Council. Mary was the winner of the Division’s 2015 James I. Keane Memorial Award, which recognizes excellence in e-lawyering.

Before practicing law, Mary trained thoroughbred racehorses and remains connected to that industry through her legal practice. Mary is a strong advocate for fitness, teaches yoga, pilates, and spinning, and practices and teaches mindfulness. The Omaha area’s metroMAGAZINE/mQUARTERLY summer 2017 issue named Mary one of Omaha’s most inspiring people.

An avid sports fan, Mary has been attending Creighton Bluejays basketball games since high school. She recently travelled to Ohio to watch the Nebraska Cornhuskers compete in the NCAA Final Four. In honor of the memory of her father, from Green Bay, Wisconsin, Mary usually attends one Packers football game each season. She fondly recalls attending the NFC championship, played in Green Bay in 2007, with her son, Michael, as “one of life’s coldest experiences!”

Edward F. OlkovichEdward F. Olkovich

Ed is a solo practitioner in Toronto, Ontario, whose practice focuses on estate planning, administration, and estate litigation. He was a leader in establishing estate law as a recognized legal specialty in Ontario. Ed became one of the first lawyers to become a Certified Specialist in Ontario Estates and Trusts Law. Becoming a specialist allowed Ed to escape his diverse and hectic general practice. He enjoys practicing law, solving estate challenges for both lawyers and clients, and focusing on being Mr. Wills (MrWills.com).

Ed was founding chair of Ontario’s “Make a Will Week” and past co-chair of the “Make a Will Month” campaigns, a province-wide public education program with the Ontario Bar Association, the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Heart & Stroke Foundation, and the Ontario Cancer Society. The program offered free public seminars and lawyer will consultations.

Ed has written The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Estate Planning in Six Simple Steps for Canadians and Executor Kung Fu: Master Any Estate in Three Easy Steps, edits Carswell, Compensation and Duties for Estate Trustees, Guardians & Attorneys, and is currently working on a book explaining his secrets to drafting better wills.

In 1982, Ed received a 50-year gold service medal from the Polish Army Veterans Association of America, awarded to him for exceptional services to veterans of a Canadian branch. Ed also was honored with another medal from the Polish government-in-exile based in London.

Ed and his wife, Krys, are great fans of jazz and have attended the Montreal Jazz Festival almost every summer since their honeymoon in Montreal in 1975. They now also spend time at their Florida condo, where Ed practices his tennis when he is not writing with his vintage fountain pens.