Jim is a retired geologist, born in Wheeling, West Virginia and now living in Waynesboro, Virginia. He is the father of three grown sons. After more than fifty-five years of marriage, his wife Jaquelin died in 2006.
The first half of his career, mostly with the U.S. Geological Survey, was devoted to applications of earth sciences in solving military problems. He had extended field assignments in Alaska, Svalbard (Norway), Germany, Iran, and Vietnam. He also held a variety of research, editorial, and managerial positions.
His later career was in environmental geology. He managed a program of environmental resource inventories for the civil works programs of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Returning to the Geological Survey, he was involved in the environmental impact analysis of various mineral developments on the public lands and the outer continental shelf. He retired as chief of the Survey’s office of environmental affairs.
For several years following retirement, Jim was a member and exhibiting artist in the Enamelists Gallery at the Torpedo Factory Art Center in Alexandria, Virginia. He later served 3½ years as a Court-Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) assisting abused and neglected children in Albemarle County, Virginia.
He has published five books:
The Cold Coasts, A Cold War Caper in the High Arctic. Describing his field assignment aboard a “spy ship” in Svalbard.
Working Class Hero, One Life in a Stalwart Generation, 1884-1954. About the life and times of his father.
Once Upon a Blog. Contents of the Blog “Jim’s Observations” from August 2013 to September 2014.
Vietnam ‘66, A Personal Experience of the War. Describing a field study of Viet Cong tunnels and their geologic settings.
Enamel Art, An Appreciation. Describing an art form, not widely known, that for over three thousand years has produced diverse objects of brilliance, beauty, and remarkable durability.
The purpose of his blog is to share with interested persons the recollections and adventures of a long and varied career, and to express some of the opinions developed along the way.
To see contents of the blog, and for easy access to specific postings, click on Detailed Contents.