On New Year’s Day we lost a colleague, a friend, a Minnesota broadcast icon and a tireless activist for this union.
Barry ZeVan was a true raconteur and a lifelong performer, he joined SAG and AFTRA as a teenager in 1953. In the early 1950s Barry appeared as a regular cast member on such classic TV programs as Mister Peepers, The Alcoa Hour and Studio One. After graduating high school, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force where he trained as a meteorologist.
He returned to performing following his enlistment, appearing on The Perry Como Show but eventually found his way into the world of broadcast production in Montana where he was occasionally pressed into service presenting the local weather. It was in this role that Barry was able to combine his professional training in meteorology with his gift for performance. Barry broke the mold of the usually staid, scientific weatherman and engaged the viewer by combining science with wit and self-deprecating humor. It was an instant hit. Barry soon moved up markets in Montana, Idaho and on to Minnesota where he became a legend. He posted a Nielsen record 51% for a weather forecast that still stands. After stints in Washington D.C. and Detroit, Barry returned to the Twin Cities where he finished his broadcast career in 1987. He was inducted into the Minnesota Broadcast Hall of Fame in 2013.
After retiring from the local news, Barry returned to his first love, acting, and joined the Twin Cities Local Board. During his decades of membership Barry served in a number of capacities including as Local Vice President, liaison to the Minnesota AFL-CIO Retirees council and Minnesota AFL-CIO Veterans council. Barry was particularly proud that he had been elected as a delegate to almost every AFTRA and SAG-AFTRA convention since the late 1980s.
Those who knew him will never forget him and we have all benefited from his decades of service as an actor, singer broadcaster and Local Board member.
The Twin Cities Local
- Local News