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Faculty and Staff

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John Haarala

Adjunct Faculty


BSBA in Logistics Management-Central Michigan University

JD-Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School

Licensed Attorney, State of Michigan (2005)

Licensed Attorney, State of Nebraska (2012)

Certified Regulatory Compliance Manager, Institute of Certified Bankers (2015)

Certified Fraud Examiner, Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (2016)

Parenting Act Approved Mediator/ Specialized Alternative Dispute Resolution, Nebraska Supreme Court Office of Dispute Resolution (2018)

General Background

John is an attorney with 15 years experience in banking, real estate, and business law. He is currently employed as an attorney in the credit-card division of First National Bank of Omaha. In 2005, he graduated from Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School with honors. While in law school, he served as a teaching assistant for a Torts I class, competed in and won the intra-school moot court competition, and earned fourteen certificates of merit for academic achievement. After law school, John taught seven terms of Advanced Legal Research and Writing as an adjunct professor at Thomas M. Cooley Law School. For the past thirteen years, John has served as in-house counsel to financial institutions, including a Fortune 500 company and the largest privately owned bank in the United States. In addition to his day job, John has mediated small-claims and family law disputes, published articles in the Nebraska Lawyer and Iowa Lawyer magazines, and was a Fellow in the eleventh class of the Nebraska State Bar Association Leadership Academy. In order to keep his teaching skills sharp, John is always looking to learn new things; he is currently halfway through his training to become a private pilot.

Notable Publications/Presentations

  • Friedenbach, C., and Haarala, J. (2018 January/February) The customer due diligence rule: FinCEN’s new regulation requires financial institutions to gather ownership information from its legal entity customers. The Nebraska Lawyer, 21(1), 15-21.
  • Presenter, Real time trends in judicial foreclosures, loan workouts, and commercial financing. 2010 State Bar of Michigan Real Property Section Winter Meeting, Scottsdale, AZ

Professional Service/Recognition

  • Participant, ICAN Defining Leadership Program, Omaha, NE (2017).
  • Participant, Nebraska State Bar Association Leadership Academy, Lincoln, NE (2017-2018)
  • Volunteer Mediator, Concord Mediation Center, Omaha, NE (2018-2020)
  • Volunteer Coach, Elkhorn Attack Youth Basketball Program (2013-2019)
  • Adjunct Professor, Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School (2006-2010)
  • Adjunct Professor, Nebraska Methodist College