Jim was very much respected and trusted, and I often took his advice and went against my own instinct and wishes. He served as Secretary-Treasurer for IGA under more than one president. Jim was particularly supportive when we tried to rebuild IGA’s financial standing. He was an important partner when we embarked the strategic planning process, for the first time in the history of IGA. With the participation of Christie, Rosalee, a facilitator, among others, Jim worked tirelessly to make sure the logistic was well in place.
Jim had an outstanding career with Heifer International. He served for many years as Director of Africa/Near East Program and Director of International Programs before retired as Senior Vice President in charge of heifer’s global programs spanning more than 35 countries. I personally witnessed Jim’s tremendous enthusiasm and passion for local producers, and I admired his skill and field experience. He was very much into local goat activities and asked relevant questions to make sure that local Heifer employees were in touch of reality and understood the aspiration and needs of producers whom they tried to assist. Many of us are committed to the alleviation of poverty and the improvement of lives in rural community through goat production. Jim was the model example as he had changed many people’s lives through his endeavor and outreach.
James was a devoted Christian and a long-time member of St. Andrew’s Church. He was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather and loved his family deeply. The months after James lost his beloved wife Judy, James wrote in his Christmas letter: “While I miss Judy each day, the love of family and friends has not only sustained me but also allowed me to move forward. I love the song by Matt Maher, Your grace is enough. Among the lyrics are the words: God, I see your grace is enough; I’m covered in your love; Your grace is enough for me. For me this grace is not something abstract.” This inner strength from above helps to explain the love, care and devotion Jim demonstrated throughout his life. Started as a teenager immigrant on a boat to the land of promise, Jim transformed lives of many. It is an understatement to say that he will be missed.
Christopher D. Lu
IGA President 2004-2008