Zeman named new faculty association president

By Gus Bode

Marvin Zeman, the newly elected Faculty Association president, has multiple incentives for making SIUC’s faculty the best it can be.

He has been teaching here for 25 years and has been involved with the faculty association for eight years. Zeman also has two children currently attending SIUC.

Zeman replaced Morteza Daneshdoost as faculty president this fall. Daneshdoost helped found the association in 1996 and served as president for four years.


During Zeman’s two-year term, he said he hopes to improve communication between the faculty and the administration, which he feels has been strained, especially after past negotiations that almost lead to a strike.

“I believe that the mission of the University, which is teaching our students, conducting fundamental research and serving the community, is carried out by the faculty,” Zeman said. “The role of the administration is to facilitate this work.”

Daneshdoost said that after four years of serving as president, the time had come for a change – and he said Zeman has all the qualities needed for the job.

“He’s an outstanding individual,” Daneshdoost said. “He’s very consistent on making sure that the policies are followed.”

Zeman said he strongly believes in the faculty of SIUC and thinks the administration needs to acknowledge its important role. He also said he believes Daneshdoost did an excellent job – one he wishes to continue,

Zeman is studying the issues he feels need immediate attention, including the University’s proposal to give a 3 percent pay raise to non-represented faculty and staff members.

Zeman also plans to look into the same sex benefits package that was approved by the Faculty Senate this summer. He has already sent a letter to Chancellor Walter Wendler and President James Walker saying the decision to give benefits to same sex partners was a move in the right direction.


“Clearly this is something we’re for,” Zeman said. “But the details need to be dealt with, primarily details like privacy and how this is going to be carried out so that people who do take advantage of these benefits are protected.”

Lenore Langsdorf, faculty association vice president, believes that Zeman’s skills as a mathematician and his previous position as chair of the grievance committee will help him with his position by helping him work through complex data and arbitration.

Zeman said he will also concentrate on is promoting diversity at SIUC and making sure that everyone is represented.

“The diversity is part of what makes this University so alive, and we need to both attract and retain the best faculty possible,” Zeman said, “They come in all shapes and sizes, and it’s something that needs to be encouraged rather than discouraged.”

Daneshdoost said he has complete confidence that Zeman will fulfill his duties as president.

“I think that the Faculty Association is in good hands with Zeman being the president,” Daneshdoost said. “I am certain that during his two years of presidency he will leave the association to the next president in better shape than he received it.”