Jim has more than 36 years of experience in private, public sector and nonprofit leadership. Building and nurturing relationships has been a career-long theme. He plays a senior leadership role for Face It TOGETHER in areas including strategic planning, leadership development, project management and evaluation. He shares his leadership passions as an adjunct professor with the University of Sioux Falls and the University of St. Thomas.
From 2007 to 2012, Jim led POET's cellulosic ethanol project (www.projectliberty.com). He managed relationships with all project partners, including Royal DSM of the Netherlands, the U.S. Department of Energy and the State of Iowa. He successfully negotiated a federal loan guarantee ($105M) through the Department of Energy. POET is the world’s largest ethanol company, producing over 1.7 billion gallons of ethanol per year.
Jim also held federal leadership positions at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Center for Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) in Sioux Falls, South Dakota (eros.usgs.gov) for 22 years. From 2001 to 2007, he served as Deputy Director of the Center, and helped lead all aspects of this fourth largest field Center of the USGS.
Jim earned a Doctorate in Leadership from the University of St. Thomas in 2012. Curriculum emphasis was on leadership development and transformational leadership. In 1988, he completed the Department of the Interior Management Development Program, which included work assignments in Congress, the Office Management and Budget, and the Department of the Interior.
He also has a Master's Degree in Geography from Oklahoma State University and a Bachelor's Degree in Geography from South Dakota State University.