Legislative Leadership: Republican Deputy Floor Leader 2015, 2013-14, 2011-12, 2009-10; Republican Caucus Chair, 2005-06; Majority Caucus Chair, 2004; Republican Whip, 2001-02.
Elective Office: House of Representatives 1994, 1996; Senate 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, current term expires January 2019.
Standing Committees (2015): Capital Budget Chair and Vice-Chair of Ways & Means, Member of Energy, Environment & Telecommunications and Agriculture, Water & Rural Economic Development Committees.
Special Committees: Joint Legislative Committee on Water Supply During Drought; State Capitol Furnishings and Preservation Committee; Pacific Northwest Economic Region; Co-Chair Heritage Caucus; Law Enforcement Officers’ and Fire Fighters’ Plan 2 Retirement Board.
Former Special Committee Service: Joint Legislative-Executive Columbia River Partnership; Committee to study Offshore Outsourcing; Joint Executive-Legislative Water Policy and Water Dispute Resolution Committee; Washington State Commemorative Quarter Advisory Commission; State Capitol Legislative Building Rehabilitation/Renovation oversight Committee; Board member Washington State Historical Society; Lewis and Clark Bicentennial Advisory Committee; Washington State Arts Commission.
Awards & Honors: Central Washington University College of the Sciences Alumni of the Year Award 2014, Washington Coalition for Open Government “Key Award” 2011, Association of Washington Business “Cornerstone” award, 2007; 2006 Champions of Free Enterprise Award, Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.; 2005 Landmark Deeds Award for Public Service, Washington Trust for Historic Preservation; 2005 Jim Matson Award, highest honor presented by the Association of Washington Business; 100 percent voting record on issues important to farmers, Washington Farm Bureau, 2005; 2004-05 Legislator of the Year, Washington Association of Agricultural Educators; Outstanding Legislator Award, National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB), 1997-98; 2000 NFIB Guardian of Small Business Award; 2000 Legislator of the Year Award, Washington Association of Agricultural Educators; 2000 Outstanding Leadership Award, NW Chapter of Paralyzed Veterans of America; 2002 Outstanding Service Award, Prosser School District; 2002 Appreciation Award, Latino/a Educational Achievement Project; 2002 Washington Farm Bureau 100% Voting Record Award.
Education: Central Washington University, B.A. in Sociology; B.A. in Education; Masters of Education in Instructional Media.
Civic Activities: Washington State Farm Bureau; Lt. Col. Civil Air Patrol; Sunnyside Daybreak Rotary Club; Gideons; Washington State Farm Bureau; Sunnyside Christian Reformed Church, former council president; Washington State Historical Society, former board of trustees member; former Sunnyside City Councilman; Habitat for Humanity, former board member; Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce, former member; Sunnyside Tennis Club, founder and former president; Washington State Grape Society, former member.
Employment: Policeman, City of Ellensburg, 1960-66; Teacher, coach, librarian, Sunnyside School District, 1966-1995; Farmer.
Personal: Jim was born in Ontario, Oregon, but moved to Sunnyside in 1956; He and his wife, Jerri, are the parents of four grown children.