JAMES ZEMAN, a 1956 graduate of Chadron High School, returned to CHS to teach English and Speech in 1960-61 after graduating with a Bachelor’s degree from Nebraska State Teachers College at Chadron in 1960. It would be the first of his 42 years in the teaching profession.
“I thoroughly enjoyed teaching the senior English class that year,” Zeman told us. “I still remember fondly the senior class play, and I can’t forget Murray Schmechel coming out on stage in the barrel in “Tons of Money.” That was Zeman’s only year of teaching at CHS.
He spent the next six years teaching speech and coaching speech activities at Lead (SD) High School while working summers to complete an M.A. in Speech Communication. After a one-year stint back at Chadron State as a one-year replacement, he signed on at Northern State University in Aberdeen, SD to teach speech and handle forensic activities. It turned out to be a 34-year gig. He completed a Ph. D. in Speech Communication at Pennsylvania State University and was very actively involved with the South Dakota Education Association for many years.
Jim Zeman retired in 2003 as a full professor at Northern State and spends his time in both Aberdeen and the Black Hills region – as well as a couple of weeks each year on the Oregon coast.