About Machaela

Machaela Cavanaugh, an Omaha native with nearly 20 years’ experience in community engagement and public affairs is a candidate to represent the 6th District (Central, West-Central Omaha) in the Nebraska State Legislature.

Machaela works at the Buffett Early Childhood Institute at the University of Nebraska. Prior to her work with the Buffett Institute, Cavanaugh served as the Director of Development for Opera Omaha and the American Province of the Servants of Mary, and a Staff Assistant in Washington D.C. for U.S. Senator Ben Nelson.

A graduate of Marian High School, Machaela obtained her Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Machaela serves on the Board of Directors of Inclusive Communities and is a member of the Preschool Advisory Committee at Morning Star Preschool. Cavanaugh resides in the Peony Park Neighborhood with her husband Nick Brotzel and their children, Della, Harriet, and Barrett. Cavanaugh is the daughter of Kate and John Cavanaugh, and the fourth of their eight children.  Her dad, John, served as a U.S. Congressman for Nebraska’s Second Congressional District from 1977 - 80.

Photography courtesy of Rachel Nuncio Gabb.