Faculty and Staff: Mark Ells


  • B.A., Iowa State University (1974), English
  • J.D., cum laude, Creighton University School of Law (1978)
  • LL.M., University of Nebraka-Lincoln College of Law (2014)

Areas of Interest

  • Investigation and prosecution of child abuse
  • Children as witnesses
  • Juvenile justice
  • Formation and maintenance of multidisciplinary child-abuse
  • Multidisciplinary investigation and treatment teams (1184 teams)
  • Sudden unexplained infant death investigations

Professional Activities & Community Service

  • Past Member, Nebraska Supreme Court Commission on Children in the Courts
  • Past Member, Governor's Commission on the Protection of Children
  • Presenter, Omaha Home for Boys, Youth Worker Certificate Program
  • OJJDP Consultant

CCFL Projects

  • Juvenile Code Project: Drafted a proposed major revision of the Nebraska Juvenile Code. The revision process included reviewing codes in other states, reviewing the literature regarding the effect of the law on child protection and juvenile justice, and assessing approaches and philosophies that appear to have positive results for the community, children and families. See Recent Work Products for information about a law review article regarding this proposal. This project was partially funded by the Nebraska Court Improvement Project. It was also supported by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln's Public Policy Center.
  • Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice Training: As a member of the Legal Team, Mark conducts training on the American Legal System, the Nebraska Juvenile Court System, the Administrative Hearing Process related to juvenile offenders committed to the Office of Juvenile Services, and Effective Testifying for Protection and Safety workers.
  • Midwest Child Welfare Implementation Center (2008-2013) The Midwest Child Welfare Implementation Center (MCWIC) was one of five Child Welfare Implementation Centers established by cooperative agreement with the Children’s Bureau. Our role was to support and facilitate communication and networking across public child welfare systems, and to assist States and Tribes to develop and execute multi-year strategic plans for sustainable systems change to improve the quality and effectiveness of child welfare services. Those efforts were focused on organizational culture, administration, and direct practice with children and families.

Selected Projects/Publications

  • 91 Journal of Child Welfare 3, 135-56 (2012) Best Outcomes for Indian Children, with co-authors Porter LL, Zink PP, Gebhardt AR, Graef MI
  • Through The Eyes of the Child Initiative Website (http://www.throughtheeyes.org/content/view/15/1/) (2007) There’s the Rub: Court-Agency Friction in Nebraska
  • 28 Hamline Journal of Public Policy 1, 199-314 (2006) A Brief Analysis of Some Elements of a Proposed Model Juvenile Code
  • 82 Nebraska Law Review, 1126--1275 (2004) Unraveling the Labyrinth: A Proposed Revision of the Nebraska Juvenile Code, with co-authors Robert B. O'Neal, Victoria Weisz, Jennifer Conner
  • UPDATE, a publication of the American Prosecutors Research Institute's National Center for Prosecution of Child Abuse vol. 15, Number 2, (2002) Behind the Drug: The Child Victims of Meth Labs, with co-authors Barbara Sturgis and Gregg Wright
  • Forming a Multidisciplinary Team to Investigate Child Abuse, Portable Guides to Investigating Child Abuse, US Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, 1998
Photo of Mark Ells.