Jim grew up in Oklahoma, Australia, and Texas, learned to fly in high school, and then entered the US Army for a 23-year career. Afterward he moved to Fredericksburg, Virginia and resumed his passion for flying. He has been a Certificated Flight Instructor for over 30 years and logged thousands of hours in a multitude of light aircraft. His volunteer flying includes almost 20 years of mission flying with the Civil Air Patrol and a variety of other organizations including SouthWings for a short period of time previously. After selling his flight school, he starting working as the Airport Director for Stafford Regional Airport and whenever possible flies for youth programs such as STEM Flights and Young Eagles. He has returned to SouthWings because of its conservation advocacy.