Director of Strategic Partnerships and Communications, Mississippi River Delta Restoration
Areas of expertise: Ecosystems, strategic communications and outreach, nonprofit management, environmental law and policy, natural infrastructure, rivers and deltas
Jim engages strategic partners in support of Environmental Defense Fund’s campaign to restore the natural functioning of the Mississippi River Delta and its wetlands. By promoting the jobs and economic benefits of coastal restoration, EDF has been able to win the support of businesses, chambers of commerce, trade associations, municipal officials, and other national, state and local partners. Restoring coastal wetlands and a sustainable Gulf Coast ecosystem must be accomplished while addressing the needs and health of coastal communities and economic infrastructure.
Jim also provides strategic direction in developing communications plans, engaging high-influence individuals to support the federal RESTORE Act, and building long-term support for coastal restoration from key business sectors — including navigation and shipping, tourism, oil and gas, fisheries, engineering and construction. His work advances EDF’s restoration goals and creates a network of advocates who will be essential to the success of the Mississippi River Delta program.
Jim has developed national communication strategies as Vice President of Communications for American Forest Foundation and Director of Development and Communications for the Land Trust Alliance. He has also managed national-level conservation programs and led national campaigns as Vice President of Programs at Defenders of Wildlife and as Chief Program Officer at Carbonfund.org. A hallmark of Defenders’ success during this period was the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone National Park.
He was the primary author of the Wild Bird Conservation Act of 1992, which banned the sale of most wild-caught birds in the pet trade, following a campaign he co-led that engaged hundreds of airlines, pet stores, and conservation partners. While directing all international programs at Defenders, Jim participated in numerous international negotiations and conferences of the parties to CITES, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.
As Executive Director of two small nonprofit groups, Maryland PIRG and 2020 Vision, Jim learned a wide range of nonprofit management skills including board development, fundraising, nonprofit law, membership, lobbying and policy. Earlier in his career, he led the environmental and real estate practice section of the National Legal Research Group for ten years.