Jim graduated from Oakley (Kan.) High School, where he earned letters in football, basketball and track. He qualified for the state track-meet his senior year and was a member of two team conference championships.
He followed his father and sister in the tradition of attending Baker. After winning three events in intramural competition as a freshman, he was convinced by Coach Jim Irick (HOF-1982) to participate at the varsity level his final three years. He lettered all three of those years as a high jumper and long jumper. In the long jump, he finished second at the conference meet one year and was conference champion the other two years. In the process, he broke a 34-year-old school record with a leap of 22’ 11 ½”. Over the course of the next two years he went on to break his own record three more times. His best jump at 23’ 5 1/2” remains the fourth longest in Baker school history. That jump was the 11th best in the nation among NAIA schools in 1963. He finished fourth and sixth in the high jump two years at the conference meet. On campus, he was a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and was a member and president of the “B” club.
After graduation he joined the U.S. Army Reserve and later spent two years as a district scout executive in Douglas and Wyandotte counties in Kansas. In 1967, he joined Baker’s admissions staff, where he began a lifelong career in education. He went on to hold director of admissions positions with two colleges in Colorado and Tennessee that eventually led him to co-found and become CEO of Career Communications Inc. of Overland Park, Kan. Career Communications has provided career and technical educational opportunities to millions of students and parents in all 50 states since the company’s founding in 1990.
Also following graduation he continued to compete as an amateur athlete. In 1974 and 1975 he went undefeated in his age group in the long jump, high jump and triple jump while competing for the Denver Track Club. In 1976 he finished sixth in the state of Colorado in the decathlon at a seniors meet held at the University of Colorado.
Jim has remained active at Baker through the years and was a member and president of the Alumni Association Board of Directors and served as a member of the Presidential Search Committee in 1986. He has served on numerous other volunteer boards and has received several awards for his service and professional accomplishments. He has twin daughters, Kim and Kelly.