During his tenure as president of a prestigious university, Alvin Saunders Johnson worked to save the lives of German Jewish scholars under persecution by Hitler. Born on a farm near Homer in 1874 to immigrant parents, Johnson would attain his undergrad at Nebraska and a PhD in economics at Columbia University. In 1923 he became the first president of the legendary New School University located in New York City. It was while serving as president that Johnson established the University in Exile where he hired Jewish scholars fleeing Nazi Germany. 184 scholars accepted Johnson's invitation to teach, bringing their families with them to America - saving some 500 lives. Johnson lived an extraordinary life and in May of 2014, he was inducted into the Nebraska Hall of Fame.