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Spring 2010 Juan Carlos Campos

Spring 2014 Alexandra Nelipa

Spring 2011 Juan Carlos Campos

Dr. Z Defender of Students and a Free Press By The Ranger Staff San Antonio College Spring 2014

Fall 2012 Juan Carlos Campos

Spring 2013 Juan Carlos Campos

Spring 2014 Franchesca Ruiz


’’ ’’ ’’ ’’ ’’ ’’ ’’ Words of wisdom

I want to also encourage you to excel as citizens and as good people. You need to use your talent to take chances, to take positions on issues.

It’s OK if people don’t want to talk. The fact that I’m here says something, I hope. “President makes himself available to students, deals with low turnout” by Jonathan Munson published Nov. 12, 2007

“Phi Theta Kappa inducts 137 members” by Nicole Lessin published Feb. 18, 2005

When we’ve done these things before, we’d go in the Fiesta Room and there were students there to talk to me, but there were also students there eating lunch and doing other stuff. I don’t want to mandate an audience, I just want to try to be as available as I can ...

I don’t think we’re ever going to be perfect, but I do think that with a little more effort, we can help more students. “College below national average in student engagement survey”

by Brianna Roberts published Jan. 30, 2009

“President conducts forum today” by Jonathan Munson published Nov. 2, 2007

He asked students April 29, 2014, to guess the value Thomas Jefferson placed on education and stressed its importance for everyone. Carlos Ferrand

Things have not even settled down yet, so we need to find out how our patterns are going. We still have to take care of students. That’s our primary concern.

Dr. Zeigler uses his iPhone to illustrate how Apple co-founder Steve Jobs not only built a computer but a culture by giving as much attention to design and marketing as to the capabilities of his computer April 29, 2014, in the semester’s final Hot Potato lecture and lunch. Carlos Ferrand

What strikes me the most about being president of this college is the response from the community. I always find someone says ‘I went to SAC.’ There’s always a connection to SAC.

“85th year celebration offers opportunities to reflect, help community” by Julysa Sosa published Oct. 7, 2010

“Academic Council discusses importance of higher graduation rates” by Trey Randolph published Jan. 30, 2009

Improving student outcomes is not just a faculty job; it’s not just my job; it’s everyone’s job and everyone’s responsibility, and it’s the responsibility of staff also. We need to all keep in mind that a word of encouragement can make a huge level of difference. “All-college concerns focus on tenure, discipline”

by Alma Linda Manzanares published Sept. 20, 2011


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’’ ’’ ’’ “Having The Ranger on our campus is a real value added to all of us. It helps us see things that aren’t so good. It helps us see things from a perspective we might not see otherwise.”

Dr. Zeigler goofs around with Ranger staffers spring 2014. Leonard Ziegler

“President affirms support for Ranger” by Faith Duarte published March 2, 2012

“The newspaper is not going away and not going to be censored. Student Government is not going to go away, and Student Government needs to be able to do its job.”

“Ranger will not be censored, college president says” by Faith Duarte published March 9, 2012

“I’m supportive of the newspaper, and I will continue to be as long as I’m here. We need forums for expression, and we need to value and support free speech.”

“Zeigler answers questions about advising, retirement”

by Rebecca Salinas published Oct. 4, 2012

Apple co-founder Steve Jobs’ diverse liberal arts education enabled him to produce the total concepts he marketed, Dr. Zeigler says to students in the semester’s final Hot Potato lecture and lunch April 29, 2014. While specialized education and training are useful, he said students should recognize the importance of a broad liberal arts education. Carlos Ferrand

“It is a student newspaper and students make mistakes. I would challenge any student to be willing to submit their test or their papers that they turn in to the whole college communities to read and critique, because, in fact, that’s what The Ranger reporters are doing.” “Zeigler answers questions about advising, retirement”

by Rebecca Salinas published Oct. 4, 2012


President Robert Zeigler talks with staff members before the Source Awards on the second-floor breezeway of Loftin April 20, 2010. The awards are sponsored by The Ranger in recognition of students, faculty and staff who have contributed to the success of The Ranger. Rennie Murrell

Always a winning source Since The Ranger began presenting Source Awards in 2005, Dr. Robert Zeigler has taken home enough certificates for wins and honorable mentions in various categories to paper a wall of his office — 22 in all. At the end of each semester, Ranger staffers make nominations and vote on sources deserving of public recognition for modeling exemplary behavior in helping to train our reporters, photographers and editors. If Ranger Source Awards had a Hall of Fame, Dr. Zeigler would be its first inductee. Here’s why: • The Ranger Lifetime Source Award — Spring 2014 • Defender of a Free Press, created to honor Dr. Zeigler in the first Source Awards, recognizes a source who personifies the First Amendment rights we enjoy or one who literally defends The Ranger’s right to publish and operate independently. Dr. Zeigler embodies both — Spring 2008, Fall 2008, Fall 2011 and Spring 2012 • Source of the Year; it’s sort of

self-explanatory — Spring 2010

times — Fall 2011, Spring 2012

• Booster Club honors the biggest supporter of The Ranger; actions include sending us new students, sharing news tips, sending words of support by letter, phone or e-mail or in-person in visits to the newsroom — Spring 2006, Honorable Mention Fall 2013

• Speak Truth to Power is for a source who stands up for what is right even at the risk of retaliation — Spring 2011

• The Sure Thing recognizes our most reliable source: returning phone calls, providing accurate and complete information, directing us to another source if necessary, declining comment politely if they really cannot talk; then reading the published story and providing feedback, and heaven help us, clarifications or corrections — Fall 2007, Fall 2008, Spring 2009, Spring 2012, Honorable Mention Fall 2011, Honorable Mention Spring 2013

• Informant is for a source who always has all the info you need (think informative) — Honorable Mention Fall 2006

• Mother Hen thanks a source who “takes a reporter under a wing” to help them learn a beat, very nurturing in the learning process — Spring 2011 • Overexposed notes a source photographed many times and who appeared in print many

• One Step from Libel recognizes sources who were the unintentional butt of jokes or criminal allegations — Spring 2006

• Patience is a Virtue honors someone who gets repeated requests for information but always responds politely and efficiently — Honorable Mention Spring 2012 • Forgive and Forget honors someone we have wronged unnecessarily but is gracious enough to not hold it against us — Honorable Mention Fall 2006 As we part company, we hope he will forget our transgressions but continue to remember our admiration and appreciation. Katherine Garcia Managing Editor Spring 2014


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Always accessible Zeigler was one of those officials who was always accessible. I don’t think there was a question he didn’t answer. Even if he couldn’t reveal too much, he would give you something. Those things, and he also didn’t go off the record. All the things any reporter could ask for. Dr. Zeigler also was an incredibly nice guy. This characteristic, of course, is not supposed

to play a factor in how a reporter does their job. You’re taught to be aware of how the people you cover could be trying to influence you. But Dr. Zeigler wasn’t being nice to create bias in your writing. It was genuine. He is one of those rare cases where the person you’re covering is pleasant and professional enough to not take the tough questions personally. Ben Olivo Managing Editor Fall 1997

Kinesiology Chair Bill Richardson, Officer Abie Camacho and Dr. Robert Zeigler pause for a moment of silence in the 2003 Challenger memorial. D.A. James

Colleagues at the June 18, 2002, board meeting showed support for Dr. Robert Zeigler as Ignacio “Nacho” Orozco, a member of the presidential search committee, recommends Zeigler as the new president of San Antonio College. Rachel Rangel

Put his foot down As president of San Antonio College, Dr. Zeigler always supported The Ranger. In 2005, we wrote a controversial story headlined “Widow Gets

The Boot” accompanied by a cartoon “Wall of Shame” about the district using eminent domain against some homeowners. The powers that be called for heads to roll at The Ranger and wanted to stifle the voice of the long-stand-

ing student publication. But Zeigler put his foot down and defended his students. He stood up for us and delivered freedom of the press at San Antonio College. Angela Covo Editor Fall 2005


President Robert Zeigler comments on preparations to make this campus “smoke-free” at College Council March 2, 2003. Nicholas Gibson

No gag orders Dr. Zeigler always made it a point to return phone calls. To this day, I think that shows real character. No matter how trivial, serious or even uncomfortable our stories were — Dr. Zeigler took time to patiently answer our questions (and call before deadline — a habit I was very thankful for). During my time as editor at The Ranger, I wrote many stories about a proposed $450 million bond election that would give the ACCD colleges money for much needed improvements and allow for expansions. While the projects within the bond were mostly received positively by the community, there was one issue that stuck out like a sore

thumb: a proposed $100 million allied health and nursing campus. The Ranger published a controversial editorial that recommended voting down the entire bond because of the suggested location of that proposed campus. The board of trustees had wanted it on the city’s North West Side, whereas students and many community members were eager to see the expansion downtown or at the existing campus locations. The situation snowballed: Community leaders started quoting The Ranger at meetings and even the San Antonio Express-News began writing about the controversy. In the end, too many residents voted “no” at the polls and the bond crumbled.

Door always open

1960 El Alamo

Dr. Zeigler truly lived up to the words “open-door policy.” Whether it was for a positive or negative story, he was there to answer. It’s hard to forget our first encounter.

The Ranger, it seemed, was not too popular with some district administrators at that time. Dr. Zeigler, however, always stood by our side, never told us what to write, and even if he was annoyed at times — he never showed it. That, too, is real proof of character. Sitting through many faculty, staff and board meetings for The Ranger, I learned that Dr. Zeigler’s first priority was to provide students with a great education. And his actions spoke louder than words: By allowing journalism students to experience a fully functioning newsroom without gag orders, he made a difference in my education, and ultimately, in my college experience. Kristina Lindberg Editor Spring 2006

We probably spent more time talking about my hometown in Mexico than the actual interview. His interest in my upbringing made me understand the man he is. I wish him well in his future endeavors. César G. Rodriguez Editor Fall 2006


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Ziggy the baker I remember we unofficially called him “Ziggy” in the newsroom (I think I even had his number saved in my cell phone under Dr. Ziggy). He was always pretty easy to get

in touch with and made himself really available when our reporters needed him as a source (especially compared to the chancellor or the director of student life at that time). And for some reason, the fact that he liked to bake cakes stands

out in my memory, and I think he actually let us do a story at his home about how he liked to bake and sometimes took his own homemade cakes to certain meetings or celebrations for the faculty. Jonathan Munson Managing Editor Spring and Fall 2007

The president joins police and facilities staff in a lighting and safety survey during a walk-through March 18, 2003, requested by The Ranger. D.A. James

Gem of a source President Zeigler was a gem of a source. No story was too small or too controversial. He always got back to me and the rest of the reporters on staff the same day. He stood up for The Ranger’s and my own journalistic integrity when the chancellor questioned a story I wrote. He told him to write a letter to the editor and stood by the paper’s right to report the truth no matter how uncomfortable it was. It wasn’t until I went to a national journalism convention and spoke to other student

reporters that I learned how hard it was for many to get in contact with their college presidents. It hadn’t occurred to me that Zeigler goes above and beyond some presidents. He genuinely cares about the success of students, and I can say I’m glad to have worked with him. I remember one time in light of severe departmental budget cuts, the editors were at risk of losing their scholarships and working without pay. Zeigler didn’t let that happen and paid from his own budget. Laura Garcia Editor Spring and Fall 2010

President Robert Zeigler fills an ice chest for Habitiat for Humanity volunteers Sept. 26, 2003. Maricela Mares


President Robert Zeigler shows off his cherry red 2002 Chevrolet Corvette April 2005. Zeigler usually drove the Corvette on the weekends. Rita Alvarado

Cares about Ranger

Always makes time

I remember my first time covering a board meeting. I was freaking out. Everything sounded important, so it was hard to write a story. I needed a quote from Dr. Zeigler, so after the meeting he gave me his cell phone number to give him a call. He not only gave me a quote but spent an hour explaining the most important parts of the meeting. I don’t know any college president who cared so much about a student publication. Dr. Zeigler always made time for us, no matter what. He really cared about the paper, and I feel fortunate that I got to work with him while I was editor.

I met Dr. Zeigler while working as a student reporter for The Ranger, and he truly made it a great educational experience. He always tried his best to make time for student reporters and stood behind the paper in many instances. During my time at SAC, Dr. Zeigler

Zahra Farah Editor Spring 2011

always made time for students. He was passionate about every student and did everything he could to make sure we were getting the best education. It’s because of his passion for students that I am able to earn my master’s degree this May. Thank you, Dr. Zeigler, for all you’ve done! Melody Mendoza Managing Editor Spring 2011

Dr. Jacqueline Claunch of Northwest Vista, Dr. Patricia Candia of St Philip’s, Dr. Ana M. “Cha” Guzmán of Palo Alto and Dr. Robert Zeigler of San Antonio College listen as trustees discuss a pay raise for faculty and staff at the board meeting Dec. 12, 2003. D.A. James


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Dr. Robert Zeigler and his wife, Mary, walk in the 2006 Martin Luther King Jr. march to commemorate the civil rights leader. D.A. James

Dumbledore and Voldemort The members of the board of trustees were discussing tenure. I can’t remember all the details all these years later, but I can remember that the discussion had something to do with limiting or eliminating tenure in the district. Whatever the semantics, I perked up. The board, in an uncharacteristic display of shared governance, asked the college presidents whether they had opinions about tenure. The eight seconds of silence that followed was embarrassing. Nearly everyone sitting in the board room was directly benefiting from the academic freedom and job security offered by tenure, and yet nobody seemed willing to come to its defense. Then, Robert Zeigler, in a slow but meaningful voice, pointed out this hypocrisy. It was definitely a Zeigler moment. While working at The Ranger in various roles for two years, I definitely had my disagreements with the man. I’ll never forget the time he kicked me out of a meeting discussing department mergers and how I fumed and had to jump through hoops afterward to try to save the story. But I’ll also never forget the times he called me from his personal cell phone during his lunch break, while driving from meeting to meeting, or even while he was headed home for the day. Nor will I forget the times he ushered me into his office when I randomly popped by, out of breath and on deadline, ready with a quote or statistic.

He always acted as an example to others, showing his respect for the freedom of the press and his love for all things SAC-related. When teachers and students complained about “those menacing kids” at The Ranger, he always stood in solidarity with us — even if we didn’t stand in solidarity with him. He understands that the discord between media and public officials will sometimes be that way. The range that he “let” me and other reporters have to test our writing strengths has undoubtedly made me a better reporter. I worry about what will happen to my beloved community college and student paper when he leaves. A part of me naively thought that he was everlasting. I began to think of him as the Dumbledore to Chancellor Bruce Leslie’s Voldemort. Without Zeigler, who will raise an even voice in support of the marginalized majority? Who will answer questions from protesting students at Pizza with the President? Who will stand in defense of the student paper, the watchdog of the college district? The future is certainly daunting without him. But we have to remember, when Dumbledore moves on to his King’s Cross the way Zeigler is moving on to the sunshine of retirement, the rest of us must remember to follow his example. We’ll miss you, Dr. Z! P.S. Do you really have an ear piercing? I never asked you. I should have because rumor has it that you do! J. Almendarez Editor Fall 2011

President Robert Zeigler rallies support for the ACCD bond election during the COPS and Metro Alliance community meeting at Sacred Heart Catholic Church Oct. 18, 2005. COPS and the Metro Alliance were trying to gather 10,000 votes in support of the upcoming $450 million bond. Rene Wicha

President Robert Zeigler details plans concerning a new parking garage at a town hall meeting Nov. 9, 2006, in Loftin Student Center to discuss the capital improvements project. Manuel Durán


Fifth-grader Gary Perez, Vice President Christine Clark Ford, Librarian Susan Myers and President Robert Zeigler tour an exhibition of photographs shot by fifth-graders from Travis Elementary Nov. 7, 2006. The exhibition was part of a project titled “Eyes on the Community.” Manuel Durán

A dream source

Dr. Robert Zeigler works in his Fletcher office Sept. 9, 2003. D.A. James

Shining example President Robert Zeigler was the shining example of an administrator. He was kind, professional and always willing to share

information. He never shied away from what would be considered by other officials to be tough questions. Jacob Beltran Web Editor Spring 2012

I can’t recall any student journalist in The Ranger newsroom who did not love Dr. Zeigler. He was a reporter’s dream source — always reliable and supportive of the work student journalists spent hours producing. Many times, Zeigler publicly defended The Ranger’s work to students, faculty, staff, and college and district administrators. When the Student Government Association and other student organizations circulated a petition that called for administrators to investigate the “unprofessional and unethical activities” of The Ranger in February 2012, Zeigler defended our publication, stating we would not be censored. He is an asset that everyone at San Antonio College will miss dearly. Alma Linda Manzanares Editor Fall 2012


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Above: Deborah Martin from public relations and President Robert Zeigler take turns reading to Maria Rodriguez’s kindergarten class at Travis Elementary March 2, 2007. The kids were treated, and greeted by cats in hats, Thing One and two of Thing Two. Vincent Reyna Left: President Robert Zeigler gives Texas state Rep. Mike Villarreal a San Antonio College baseball cap during a visit Feb 9, 2007, in Room 120 of visual arts center. Vincent Reyna Real estate/construction specialist Vince Buzzelli guides Dr. Robert Zeigler during a walk-through while Vice President Kristine Ford Clark speaks with facilities superintendent David Ortega March 8, 2007, at the recently purchased building at 1405 N. Main. Tobin Lofts was built here. Manuel Durán

Transparent and congenial My first assignment as a Ranger staff writer in fall 2011 was to write about the 50th anniversary celebration for Scobee Planetarium. I remember how nervous I felt dialing the president’s office. Apart from sporadically seeing him at the coffee shop two blocks south of the college, this was the first time ever having the opportunity to speak

with him. “Howdy, Faith!” he said cheerily in his southern drawl, immediately putting me at ease as I continued with the interview. In the following semesters as I moved through different editor positions, the story assignments became more complex, some of which required more than one interview with Zeigler. He was always forthcoming and

approachable. He made it a priority to return phone calls, sometimes calling outside of his office hours on his personal cell line, just to ensure all of my questions were answered. As I continue on my college journey, it’ll be a challenge to find a college president as transparent and congenial as Zeigler. Faith Duarte Managing Editor Spring 2013


Students crowd in to ask questions of President Robert Zeigler at one of his regular student forums Nov. 2, 2007. D.A. James

Take note administrators Although I only had a short time to cover college governance, Dr. Robert Zeigler became the best source I have ever had. From my coverage of the Ranger Gnome to more serious topics, he was always happy to give me an interview or help me find hard-to-get sources. He was always very vocal about his appreciation for The Ranger and what

we do. After graduating and moving to another college paper, I learned that not everyone feels the same way about student publications. Administrators could learn a few lessons from Dr. Zeigler. It was an honor getting to speak to him, and I sincerely wish him the best in his retirement. Relax now, you’ve earned it! Emily Rodriguez Managing Editor Fall 2013

Jesse Treviño, artist and former student, talks to President Robert Zeigler after presenting the college a painting of Cesar Chavez in the president’s conference room Oct. 10, 2007. Treviño lost his right arm in Vietnam and returned to SAC 1991 - 1992, taking art classes, and now has a painting in the Smithsonian Institution. D.A. James

Better than an A The editor of a newspaper is not the most popular person in the room most of the time. I learned this when I served as editor of The Ranger. From board meetings to special events, I was never greeted with applause, but President Robert Zeigler never missed a chance to find me in the crowd and tell me that I was doing fine work. Frequently, during the Alamo Colleges’ board of trustee meetings, Zeigler would find me to tell me how much he liked the editorial cartoons. Getting an A on an essay or test feels good, but being commended by the president of this college made me feel proud. His gesture was more than a simple compliment. His gesture showed his attitude toward students, this college’s paper and the importance of the First Amendment. I have many fond memories from this college, but I will always remember how Zeigler treated me — like a professional, like an equal. Carlos Ferrand Editor Fall 2013


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Recommends recorder My first interaction with Dr. Zeigler was a face-to-face interview in his office. I was a bit nervous; to that point, most of my interviews had been conducted over the phone. Plus, he was the president of the college, and I had never interviewed anyone with that level of importance before. I walked into his office, with embarrassingly sweaty palms, and shook his hand. We talked about a faculty walking spree as part of a wellness initiative at the college. Here was the problem: I did not bring a recorder. I scribbled notes as fast as I could. Dr. Zeigler, clearly noticing my struggle to keep up, slowed down at times to allow me to catch up. I appreciated his patience, as he often had to wait for me to finish writing before I asked the next question. We laughed about my desperate attempt to take notes quickly, and he recommended I bring a recorder with me to interviews. From that point on, I always did. President Robert Zeigler dedicates the new nursing complex at the ribbon-cutting ceremony Feb. 6, 2009. Melissa Toscano Lazcano

Feeds starving students I never had much direct interaction with Dr. Robert Zeigler. The most we ever spoke was at the Christmas party at Koehler Cultural Center last year. I said hi. He asked if I wanted a tamale. I asked what was in them. He said pork and chicken. Being vegetarian, I politely declined and moved down the line. However, his affinity for feeding people (I’ve heard he makes a pretty mean rum cake) shined this semes-

Michael Peters Sports Editor Fall 2013

ter when he agreed to fund breakfast for the editorial staff every not-sobright, but early 7 a.m. Thursday production. The bagels, cream cheese and fresh fruit minimized my “hangry� rants, which I know the rest of the staff greatly appreciated. His generosity got me through some pretty rough mornings when meeting deadline was tentative. At least, I was well fed. Mandy Derfler Editor Spring 2014

President Robert Zeigler at a board meeting Oct. 20, 2009. Destiny Mata


President Robert Zeigler at the 85th anniversary gala at the Westin Riverwalk Hotel Oct. 9, 2010. Julysa Sosa

Family welcome Dr. Zeigler, to me, is not just the president of my college. He treats you like a member of his family — welcoming you in whenever he can, offering you candy or something to drink. If he saw you walking by, he would take the time to say hello. Dr. Zeigler might be the president of our college, but he made our college home by always going the extra mile. He will always be the M&M king to me and the best host. Maura Callahan Production Assistant Spring 2014

President Robert Zeigler and Jessica Howard, vice president of academic affairs, lead the college delegation with a banner reflecting the theme of the MLK march Jan. 18, 2010. Tyler K. Cleveland

Changes perspective

President Robert Zeigler and Trudy ChanceKinneson, daughter of former President Truett Chance, Open the new Chill Lounge in the first level of Chance Jan. 29, 2010. Sarah Janes

The first time I met Dr. Zeigler, I was literally shaking in my boots — I was wearing boots. It was 2010, I was a freshman and it was my first Ranger assignment. The staff was small and we had limited reporters. The editors were assigning coverage of the grand opening of the Chill Lounge on the first floor of Chance Academic Center and needed a reporter. I was the chosen one. They told me three things: You’re going to meet administrators, you’ll have a photographer and you’ll need to get some information from the president of the college as well as report on the event. I remember getting to the event early and waiting nervously. When all the people in their fancy suits and attire walked in, I felt a little under-dressed for the occasion with my jeans, plain shirt and notepad.

As I was taking notes and waiting for the event to start, this really tall guy approached me and introduced himself. I was in shock when he told me he was President Robert Zeigler. I didn’t know a president would be so friendly. When he held out his hand to greet me, it was calming, as if I was shaking hands with a friend as they walked in the front door. I thought presidents were supposed to be like principals — mean, strict and with an ugly facial mole. He helped change my perspective from a high school point of view to a college view. His approachable manner helped ease my apprehension and gave me the confidence to cover the event. The story ran on the back page of The Ranger — a prime color spot in the newspaper and a space not usually filled with a beginning reporter’s first story. Riley Stephens Photographer Spring 2014


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President Robert Zeigler and Vice President Kristine Clark are guests on the KSYM pledge drive in Longwith March 28, 2007. D.A. James

Radio star Dr. Zeigler is a rock star! A radio star, actually, and I’m thrilled that I got to play a key role in getting his “Speaking of SAC” onto the airwaves of KSYM, San Antonio College Radio 90.1 FM. And, his vision to reach for the stars is becoming a reality as the renewed

Scobee Planetarium and new Challenger Learning Center are taking shape at San Antonio College. I am thrilled that I got to play a key role to get that project off the ground, starting back in April 2010. I got those and so many more opportunities because Dr. Zeigler believed in me, and I am forever grateful. I started in the SAC PR

Unflappable In 2010, the PR staff dressed as flappers for Halloween to salute the 85th anniversary of SAC. We marched into Dr. Ziegler’s office in full flapper costume and posed for photos with him. Not sure if he was amused or appalled — either way, we had fun and really, so did he. Julie Cooper Public Information Officer 2009-2013

office in November 2004 as public information officer. Almost four years later, when Dr. Zeigler hired me as PR director in August 2008, he gave excellent advice, saying that we’d have open dialogue to address issues before they become problems. For all those years since, we have. Dr. Zeigler is a great leader and teacher. He is

thoughtful, methodical, gentle, kind, patient, logical, responsible, respectful, inquisitive, imaginative, inspirational and full of integrity. Known and respected throughout the community, I am so happy and fortunate to know him, and also to call him a friend. Deborah M. Martin Public Relations Director 2008-2012

To celebrate the 85th college anniversary, PR staffers Julie Cooper, Valerie McCoy, Norma Davies and Deborah Martin dress as flappers and pose with Dr. Robert Zeigler. Dan Melgoza


Looking for answers On numerous occasions after the print edition of The Ranger hit the stands, I received calls from Dr. Zeigler asking about something that appeared in the paper. Without fail, he made clear he was looking for a journalistic explanation to relay to whoever complained about a story, photo or editorial. Not once did he scold, advise, threaten or ask the students to tone it down. He respected their right to gather information and publish even when their efforts upset people. When I explained, for example, that a reporter knocking on a door asking for an interview was not harassment or that an employee’s contagious illness became newsworthy when an entire building had to be sanitized, he thanked me and said he would pass that information along.

One morning, I returned a call while he was visiting Washington, D.C., because apparently emails were flying that The Ranger had violated FERPA in reporting on a student with a criminal past appointed to the Student Activity Fee Committee. He had already seen the email flurry, heard from at least one administrator at Sheridan Street and checked with district’s legal counsel, who couldn’t find any potential violation in the story. He basically wanted me to confirm what he already knew — that The Ranger had not broken any laws — so he could respond to complaints he couldn’t escape even on a rare getaway. More often, Dr. Zeigler called to praise The Ranger, usually issues with the meatiest stories, and ask me to pass along his compliments to the staff. Marianne Odom Media Communications Chair 2006-present

President Robert Zeigler is greeted by Robert Vela, interim district director of the center for student information, Sept. 10, 2010, at The Cove to celebrate “SAC Night.” Tyler K. Cleveland

Understands press freedom

Funds network

Any time he received a complaint about a story — or a “misquote” in a story — from a district administrator or board member, Dr. Zeigler would call and ask what the situation was. I would tell him. And that would be the end of it. Not sure what he did or said, but that was the final word on the subject. I also felt that he truly understood that students have the same press freedom professional journalists claim. He not only believed that, he spoke out about it and defended it. Finally, his financial support for the department and the Urban Journalism Workshop — including hosting a welcome lunch each summer for the high school journalists — was consistent over the years.

Shortly after I began as chair in 1995, we installed new, dramatically faster computers to allow us to produce The Ranger entirely digitally for the first time, including pictures, advertising, copy and headlines. Before then we had to paste up portions of the paper manually. To accomplish the change, we needed to create a permanent ethernet network. I went to Dr. Zeigler with our urgent need. We had not requested network

Chet Hunt Journalism-Photography Chair 1996-2006

money in our budget. He listened patiently, empathized and said he thought he could help. Within a week, Dr. Zeigler found $10,000 to hire a firm to install the network wiring. Roughly a month later it was done, and The Ranger became the first newspaper in San Antonio produced entirely electronically. Without Dr. Zeigler’s help, this cutting edge change would not have happened. Jerry Townsend Journalism-Photography Chair 1995-1997


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President Robert Zeigler in his office April 22, 2014. Riley Stephens

Friend, office mate Bob Zeigler and I have been friends since the late 1960s when we were teaching assistants in the history doctoral program at Texas Tech. When we both came to the History Department at San Antonio College, we continued our friendship, sharing an office for over 20 years. Over the years, I and my wife, Sarah, and Bob and his wife, Mary, became very close friends. We have many pleasant memories of our travels with the Zeiglers and sharing holidays and other special occasions with them. We have enjoyed seeing their children, Sara and Todd, grow up and become extremely successful in their chosen professions. The Zeiglers excelled in parenting skills, too. Bob’s advancement from fellow history professor to president of San Antonio College has always been a source of my admiration for him personally and respect for his abilities. He has served the college long and well, and we wish for him and Mary a happy and fulfilling retirement. Kenneth Hairgrove Professor of History, retired

Theater sophomore Jennifer Godfrey takes a photo of President Robert Zeigler and Santa Claus Jeff Hunt, chair of theater and speech communication, Dec. 3, 2010, in Loftin. Members of the Onstage Drama Club sold photos with Santa Claus for $3. Julysa Sosa


Understands needs In the 29 summers of the Urban Journalism Workshop at San Antonio College, we’ve survived loss of a newspaper, death of journalism education giant W.B. “Dub” Daugherty, retirement of Texas Legend Chet Hunt, three wars, five floods, six mayors, five chancellors, four college presidents, two cancer cases, two Ph.D.s and an MFA. We began with two grants totaling $4,000. We’ve trained 396 students from all over San Antonio and South Texas, including Austin, Laredo, Kerrville and Bandera, from public schools, private schools and homeschools. We’ve awarded more than $100,000 in scholarships and earned the distinction of more Dow Jones News Fund writing and photo competition winners than any workshop in the country. Staff has grown from six — instructors and resident assistants — to 14 semi-permanent professionals plus college student volunteers. Their combined dedication to the workshop totals 201 years. Their joint journalism acumen: incalculable. Together, we’ve celebrated birthdays, graduations, hirings, promotions, house warmings, weddings and births. Together, we’ve mourned the passing of those who left us too soon: our mentors, our students, our parents and our pets. We have had the pleasure of working with some of the best students any of us has encountered anywhere. We shared joy in learning we had succeeded in recruiting a work-

With a little help from our friends.

Parody illustration by Adrian Zamarron, UJW 1989

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shop participant to San Antonio College. We share the pride of our students’ many accomplishments in the diverse fields journalism underlies. We’ve tried to impress on succeeding classes of young people our passion for our profession, stressing the importance of reading, current events and the privileges of citizenship. We have fostered the beliefs that commu-

nication is the foundation of humanity, that free exchange of ideas is the crucible of democracy, and that a well-informed citizenry will choose justice and compassion over intolerance and ignorance. Dr. Zeigler has been there each summer to welcome students, making college a little less formidable and education a little more accessible. Without his steward-

ship, interest and generosity, we could not have served the youth of South Texas nearly so well. In the ever-tenuous world of education funding, he kept this project afloat and gave us two years we could not have otherwise hoped for. We extend our eternal gratitude for being our “watchdog” these many wonderful years. Irene L. Abrego Director, UJW at SAC 1995-2014

Zeiglerbook  

Special book for Dr. Robert Zeigler, president of San Antonio College by The Ranger staff.

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