President Zimmerman Collection

Image: UNM-Taos Library


James F. Zimmerman served as the president of the University of New Mexico from 1927 to 1944. During that time he was called upon to deliver the commencement address each year. These were usually given in addition to an invited commencement speaker.

“You will join eagerly with us in building the kind of University […] that will, by utilizing the wealth of scientific, historical, and artistic material in our own environment, continue to enlarge and enrich the lives of the young people of this state.” – from To the Graduating Class – 1929

Why is it significant?

The commencement speeches were given during a time when the university grew rapidly and established many of the traditions that have defined its reputation and influenced its culture. They express the values, ideals, and interests of the faculty, administration, and students.


Kathleen Knoth – Library Director
Enrico Trujillo – Multimedia Devt Specialist

Thank You

Nancy Doolittle and Elizabeth "Libby" Johnson  - Granddaughters of President Zimmerman
Terry Ann Gugliotta  - Archivist at the Center for Southwest Research


“Students, faculty, Regents, and Presidents will come and go, but the University will endure. Every period of its history is important, and all that we do now, even in this transition period, has significance because it constitutes a link in the unbroken chain of the University’s history.” – from To the Graduating Class of 1927