Jim serves as Purple’s managing partner of government affairs. He began his career in politics in 1996 as the Communications Director for then-Congressman Tim Johnson in his successful run against incumbent South Dakota Senator Larry Pressler.
After moving to Washington, Jim worked as Communications Director for Senators Robert Torricelli and John Kerry. He managed strategy and communications for Chairman John Glenn and Minority Leader Tom Daschle for the Democrats on the Senate Government Affairs Committee. Similarly, he was retained by House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt to advise Judiciary Committee Democrats during the 1998 Impeachment hearings.
Over the next two election cycles, Jim served as Communications Director, Political Director, and finally as Executive Director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.
Jim managed John Kerry’s political operation for more than five years, including the strategic planning during the run up to his 2004 presidential run. That culminated in his service as Kerry’s Campaign Manager until November of 2003.
Upon his departure from the Kerry campaign, Jim founded his own strategic and communications shop, The Thunder Road Group. He has advised Democratic candidates at the House, Senate, gubernatorial and local levels. He has also had as clients a variety of independent political efforts (527s, c-3 and 4 organizations, party committees, and independent expenditure programs), progressive interest groups, professional trade organizations, and corporations. Jim joined Purple in the summer of 2011.