This Bio was written several years ago when I applied to Mayor Weisner’s office for the opportunity to serve on the new Sustainable Aurora Advisory Board. The Mayor’s office felt that I could better serve on the Preservation Commission. This is not a Management resume, but it’s worth noting that I have held Director level positions at two dot coms in Silicon Valley, was the General Manager of a large Japanese Language school, and held several Sales and Marketing management positions as well as having been an Executive Recruiter for several years in New England. I have led a very interesting life!
I served on Mayor Richard C. Irvin’s Transition Team Subcommittee: Arts, Culture & Recreation; was a Community Contributor to the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning LTA Aurora Master Plan revision; served 3 years on the Aurora Preservation Commission; moderated for 2 years the Aurora History Roundtable at the Santori Library, and have written articles for local magazines and newspapers.
This bio has been lightly modified.
Jim Schweizer is a recent addition to Aurora, Illinois. He grew up in St. Louis, Missouri, graduated from Colby College with majors in Economics and Russian Studies, and moved to the Prairie State from Santa Barbara, California. He is currently restoring an 1894 Queen Anne in the Tanner Historic District, and acclimating to his new city and its environment.
In his 30 year career as an educator, manager, entrepreneur and traveler he has lived and worked in Japan and on both US coasts. Starting as a bank operations management trainee and progressing to director at 2 dot-com start-ups in Silicon Valley he has consistently striven to break barriers and spur innovation.
An eLearning pioneer in the 90s, Jim wrote the first online ESL textbook available in multiple languages. Jim was an early adopter of Linux in a Japanese environment and built The Tokyo Linux Users Group web site to over 40,000 pages. He built Linuxcare University from the ground up offering eLearning and on-site Instructor Led Training and provided blended learning courseware to Fortune 100 companies including IBM, SGI, and Motorola.
Historic home restoration has always been a part of Jim’s life. He grew up in a turn-of-the-century granite Tutor, restored an 1890s lake front property in the Belgrade Lakes chain in Maine, and recently completed renovations on two California craftsman style cottages. He also has a great deal of experience with manufactured housing and stick built construction. Working with Mitsubishi engineers, he designed and oversaw the construction of (Jim believes) an “earthquake proof” residence in Okayama, Japan.
Jim’s commitment to the environment began at an early age growing up in the Boy Scouts and exploring the Ozarks. He has spent far less time in pristine conditions than he wants, but has managed to canoe the Seal River in Manitoba, climb the Continental Divide and Grand Tetons, mule train into the “high country”, hike parts of the Appalachian Trail, and grapple up glaciers in the Titcomb Valley. He also spent a summer in college on an economic grant from the State of Maine attempting to put a dollar value on the recreational use of the West Branch of the Penobscot River.
Currently, Jim serves on the Board of the Aurora Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association. Formerly, he was on the Executive Committee of Aurora Greenfest, volunteers at local events such as fundraisers for the Aurora Interfaith Food Pantry and the United Way Cardboard Races, and participates in hunger relief programs such as Feed My Starving Children.
As an avid outdoor photographer Jim spends a great deal of time on the banks of the Fox River and sees the protection of the river and its environments to be a crucial long-term investment in the prosperity of Aurora. The health and wellbeing of The City of Aurora depends on the quality of its air, water and soil, and Aurora’s growing reputation as green leader of post-industrial mid-sized US cities is an amazing accomplishment!