Recently, I was reviewing my calendar and posting required events on the calendar for December, 2019. Then I took a peak at January, 2020, and I realized that I will be 80 years old. So, I said to myself, “self, is age 80 a good time to consider retirement?” I have been blessed to have a career of 30 years at the State Capitol in the Secretary of State’s Office, and now will be completing a quarter of a century at the Nebraska Press Association. Both careers have been fulfilling for me and my family.
To answer that question, I began the process of listing reasons and excuses for retirement. Both lists became blended and all became real and useful. Here follows some items from the list: for the past 56 years, virtually everyday, I have been putting on a coat and tie; the digital age of newspapers and the newspaper business have been running past my capacity to understand and to add value; my wife of 48 years and I would like to take a foreign country cruise as well as have some time to enjoy retirement together; we now have our first grandchild—a grandson who is nine months old; a grandfather is entitled, and perhaps required, to have quality time with a grandson; I feel like I would be leaving the Nebraska Press Association in the hands of a very talented and competent staff; just as important, all papers are members of the Nebraska Press Association; the association is in sound financial condition; all official legal notices remain published in newspapers; the Nebraska Press Adv. Service/OnePress owns the office building and it is paid for; our associations have no debt and all taxes are paid current; our associations have had perfect audits; and finally, we have a very strong Foundation functioning with strong and rich scholarship and intern programs. So I do not feel guilty about a decision to leave my position with the Nebraska Press Association at age 80. Just saddened to leave wonderful friends and members who have treated Linda and myself with highest regard and respect, to include my surprise induction into the Nebraska Journalism Hall of Fame.
So what’s next? Well, NPA and NPAS (OnePress) have very strong board members.
A transition committee will be functioning and will prepare the process for advertising the opening of the position of Executive Director. Appropriate news releases and advertisements for the position will be prepared and distributed widely. Materials outlining the directives, what the Associations are looking for in an Executive Director along with salary and other benefits information, will be provided.
Applications will then be reviewed by the Transition Committee and top candidates will be forwarded to the boards of directors for a decision of hire. Beermann will stay on in 2020 until a replacement director is hired and for a period of months for transition and training.
When I was hired by Nebraska Press Association, without a contract, I promised to stay for at least five years. I have had the privilege to serve for 25 years.
During the 30 years serving in the State Capitol, I promised the voters, each time I
took the Oath of Office, that I would faithfully uphold the constitution and laws of the state of Nebraska, to the best of my ability.
During my 25 years at the Nebraska Press Association, I promised that I would defend the First Amendment and protect the open meetings and open records laws of Nebraska to the best of my ability.
I am confortable in my assessment that I have met my promises and therefore, I feel confortable in my decision to retire.
Finally, I note that I have been blessed in many ways. So I endeavored to always be an ambassador of good will on behalf of Nebraska and Nebraskans in every way that I could. I will leave it to others to determine if I succeeded.
ALLEN BEERMANN Executive Director of Nebraska Press Association Former Nebraska Secretary of State
Mr. Beermann served as Legal Counsel and Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of State for two years, and on September 7, 1967, was appointed Deputy Secretary of State. On January 7, 1971, Mr. Beermann was sworn into office as Secretary of State for his first four year term at age 31, and on January 9, 1991, was sworn into office for a sixth four year term. On January 6, 1995, he became the Executive Director of the Nebraska Press Association/Nebraska Press Advertising Service. Mr. Beermann was born and raised on a farm in Dakota County, Nebraska. He is a graduate of South Sioux City High School (National Honor Society), and the Creighton University School of Law where he earned a Juris Doctorate Degree. He is a member of the Nebraska Bar Association, the American Bar Association-Executive Director- of NPA/NPAS; American Legion Post No.3, Elks Lodge No. 80 and the Newcomen Society of North America. He is listed in Who’s Who Among American Colleges and Universities, Who’s Who in American Politics, 1971 Edition of Personalities of the West and Midwest, serves on the Board of Directors for the NebraskaLAND Foundation, member of the Board at Large Lincoln Foundation, served 14 years on Immanuel Medical Center Board in Omaha, Executive Board for Cornhusker Boy Scouts of America and is a retired Commissioned Office (LTC) for the United States Army Reserve. He did serve on the Board of Directors People to People International, and served on the Advisory Panel-Federal Election Commission for 18 years, and is a member of Grace Lutheran Church. He served on the Board of Directors for the Nebraska State Patrol Foundation, Inc., and is the Past Chairman of the Nebraska Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve. He is a member of the Lincoln Downtown Rotary Club and was appointed by Governor Ben Nelson to serve as a Nebraska Diplomat. College Alumni Achievement Award, recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of from Midland Lutheran College, May 1995. He was awarded Honorary Life Membership in Nebraska Jaycees and has received the National Association of Secretaries of State Meritorious Service Medallion. He has received an Honorary Doctor of Laws from Midland Lutheran College in May of 1995. He was awarded the Exceptional Service Award from the Selective Service System, and Federal Voting Assistance Award by William Perry, Secretary of Defense. The Nebraska Diplomats in 2001 gave Beermann their highest honor - Ambassador Plenipotentiary. Also in 2001 the Republic of China, at a formal ceremony, presented Mr. Beermann with their Foreign Service Medallion. First civilian recipient of the Homeland Defense Ribbon presented by Governor and Adjutant General. In 2005, the University of Nebraska presented to Beermann the “Outstanding Service to Journalism Award.” In 2006 Beermann was awarded the Ike Freidman Community’ Leadership Award from the Knights of AK-SAR-BEN; and in 2007 he was named Nebraskan of the Year by the combined Rotary clubs of Nebraska. In 2009, he received the All-American Journalist Award from Midland Lutheran College. He also became the Omaha Press Club’s Face on the Barroom Floor. In 2011, he received the highest award given by the state, the “Distinguished NEBRASKAlander Award”. Mr. Beermann’s activities have included four summers as Camp Director of Camp Cedars Boy Scout Camp near Fremont, Nebraska, serving as Camp Director of the National Boy Scout Jamboree, served as a newscaster and disc jockey for KHUB Radio in Fremont, and participated in some professional waterskiing and public speaking. Mr. Beermann also enjoys racquetball and jet skiing. In 2018, Allen was honored by his peers by being inducted into the Nebraska Journalism Hall of Fame. Mr. Beermann is married to the former Linda Dierking of Nebraska City, Nebraska. They have two sons, Matthew Allen, and John William, and one grandson, Isaac Allen Beermann.