Jack J. Kempner Interview, July 24, 1991


Jack J. Kempner


Annie Pontrelli



Download Audio Interview (115.2 MB)

Download Transcript of Jack Kempner Interview (438 KB)


Jack Kempner talks about coming to the University of Montana (UM) in 1956 as an assistant professor in the Accounting Department, and he describes the politics of being a faculty member. He recalls the animosity that existed between President Carl McFarland and Dean Ted Smith. Kempner talks about the growth of UM’s student and faculty population after World War Two and how that made it difficult to maintain close relationships with many of the faculty members. He recalls the barbecues that he and his wife threw for his students. Kempner also talks about Robert Pantzer’s presidency, and the unrest among the student population during the Vietnam War-era. He voices his concerns about the teachers’ union and Faculty Senate and how those two organizations may have contributed to an adversarial relationship between the faculty and administration. Kempner describes the difference between public and private accounting, and he details his teaching philosophy. He discusses the importance of training students to actively engage in a given profession. He notes that one of his biggest accomplishments was training students to be successful accountants. He concludes by talking about his volunteer and extra-curricular activities including being a member of the Montana Society of CPAs.


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Document Type

Oral History


Vietnam War, 1955-1975; Counterculture movement; Vietnam War protests; Robert Pantzer; Ted Smith; Department of Accounting; University of Montana faculty; University of Montana-Missoula; Certified public accountant; Montana Society of CPAs

Original Date


Time Period

Twentieth century

Geographic Coverage




Original Collection

University of Montana Centennial Oral History Project, OH 270, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula

Digital Publisher

University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library


Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / library.archives@umontana.edu

Oral History Number

OH 270-028, 029

Media Type

Sound; Text

Original Format

2 sound cassettes (2:00:00 min.) analog + 1 transcript (23 p.: 28 cm.)

Digital Format

audio/mp3; application/pdf

Run Time

01:31:58 minutes

Local Filename

OH_270_028_029.mp3; OH_270_028_029.pdf

Jack J. Kempner Interview, July 24, 1991