Jim has a wide range of interests and skills. He has characterized by the director of the local development authority as a serial entrepreneur. He is one of the few people that can say he has led a defense program with substantial software content, delivered on-time, on-budget, as originally bid. At the same time he brings a passion for community service.
BUSINESS OWNER AND ENTREPRENEUR. Jim Olsen owned and managed Human Interactive Products, Inc. through January 2018. The company was dedicated to both profitable operations and social good.
Native Plant Restoration and Nursery (Trade Name: Great Bear Restoration),
Commercial Real Estate and Management,
Business Planning and Market Research Consulting,
Consumer Software and Electronics for license,
Consulting for Large Scale Engineering Developments in Program Management, System and Software Engineering.
Competitive Strategy and Proposal Manager of pursuits large and small including team building, multimedia hardware in the loop demonstrations and video production management. The company has created or been instrumental in development of projects for social good:
Construction and lease-back of Emma's House, a home setting for interviews with Child Victims of Crime,
Underwrote and produced Hamilton Performing Arts Series.
Business plan and advocacy for Community Based Mental Health Crisis Center.
Private/public Bison Internet Café, a place for people recovering from mental illness to integrate with the community.
Startup Funding for Mississippi Home Again, a model program for community-to-community disaster relief.
SOCIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL ADVOCATE. From 1993 to present, Jim has been engaged in environmental and social advocacy on a volunteer basis. He has helped build organizations, been a spokesperson, and coordinated multifaceted campaigns that included press, public forums, litigation, and grassroots organizing. Work includes:
Effective Response to Domestic Abuse and Child Abuse.
Forest and Wildlands: Forest Management, Motorized Use, Endangered Species Protection.
Land Use and Subdivisions.
Year-round sustainable food growing concept.
Highway Expansion and Community Impacts.
Biological Laboratory Safety.
Hamilton Farmers Market.
Climate Change Action Group.
Popular Book Author — Activism
I Ching of a Thousand Doors: Jim has completed I Ching of the Thousand Doors. which is scheduled for release on February 14, 2020. The book involves a correlative discussion of the I Ching (also known by the pinyin title: Yijing - The Book of Changes) including its relationship with major religions, language and translation, Chinese history, religious history, language, psychology, and science. It landed an agent and has gotten great reviews from editors of major publishers, but required more of a “platform” from the author.
Teaching a course at the Bitterroot College. Recently held a session for graduate students for The University of Montana Environmental Studies Leadership Program using case studies in the Bitterroot Valley to show how the principles articulated in Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream Speech” worked in the ground in grass-roots activism.
Member, Bitterroot Affordable Housing Coalition (2018-present)
Treasurer, Hamilton Farmers Market Cooperative, (~2008-2009, 2012-2014, 2017 to 2020).
President/Treasurer, Board of Directors, Bitterroot School of Music (2015 - 2018)
Governing and financial management support for an organization founded by Jenn Adams.
Board of Directors, Bitterrooters for Planning (~2016-2017)
Main effort was to try to reengage volunteers which had diminished because of paid staff. Support ligation on subdivision and attempts at a Walmart.
Ad Hoc Group, Year-round food growing (~2009-2011)
Vice-Chair, Board of Directors, Supporters of an Abuse Free Environment (S.A.F.E.) (1996- 2000)
President, Friends of the Bitterroot (1994-2000)
Friends of the Bitterroot is a grassroots conservation organization. The group was considered one of the most successful forest watch and wilderness advocate grassroots groups in the country.
Member, Board of Directors, Citizens for a Safe Lab
This was a campaign to get the National Institute for Health to implement a safe BSL-4 lab, a coalition with Friends of the Bitterroot and Women’s Voices of the Earth,
Member, Board of Directors, Highway 93 Citizens Coalition for Responsible Planning (1999- 2000)
Was involved in, and was often the spokesman for, a grassroots group that advocated alternatives to the expansion of Highway 93 in Ravalli County to a four-lane highway,
Member, Committee Member, Montana Smart Growth Coalition – Helena (~1999-2004)
Primary on transportation committee – mostly participated in reviewing bills and Montana state legislature lobbying.
Boy Scouts of America, Eagle Scout, Adult Leader
Ravalli County Democrat Central Committee ~ 1998-2006
Candidate for State Legislator (Democrat) – 2000, 2016
Montana Democratic Party State Executive Committee
Delegate To Democratic State Convention (2002 – Platform; 2016 – Platform, Bernie Sanders Delegate)
Highway 93 Citizen’s Advisory Committee (No longer active – project complete)
Rocky Mountain Laboratories Advisory Committee (No longer active – project complete)
City of Hamilton Impact Fee Advisory Committee (No longer active – project complete)
City of Hamilton Equal Opportunity Committee (No longer active)
Ravalli County Mental Health Crisis Center Advisory Committee (No longer active – Project Compete)
HUMAN INTERACTIVE PRODUCTS, INC. Jan 2000 – Jan 2018
Jim organized the company around Profit Centers within the company, each with a manager and with the bookkeeping system organizes costs and income that can be allocated to each Profit Center. The company grew to a $5 million company.
Great Bear Restoration and Great Bear Natives 2006-2018
Great Bear Restoration was formed as a native plant wholesale nursery and restoration service Profit Center in 2006 and served a geographic area in the intermountain West from the Canadian border to Northern Arizona. The Profit Center expanded to create and expand native plants sales in retail nurseries in Montana, Idaho, and Utah. After a major staff change in 2011, Jim took over as Operations Manager, making the business more cost-effective as the industry contracted through 2014. The operation was sold in early 2018.
Real Ventures 2006-2017
Three properties we purchased and two upgraded – they have all been sold in the last year.
Hamilton Carriage House is a historic building that the company renovated and updated for use
by the company and tenants.
Emma’s House is a home setting for forensic interviews with child victims of crime and is
leased to Emma’s House Childrens Advocacy Center. Jim worked with the organization that would become Emma’s House to find a suitable property. He found an investor to share the costs and build to suit, to be leased back at an affordable rent.
Residential Rental. Was purchased for rental to a residential tenant.
Montana Made Batik 2010 Implemented a business plan to hire people and do T-Shirt production using techniques developed
by Mary Byers. The increased sales to support wages was not sufficient so operations was shut down.
Consulting Services (This area grew the company to peek at a $5 million per year business)
DEFENSE SYSTEMS – ENGINEERING, PROGRAM, AND PROPOSAL MANAGEMENT 2001-2010
Bison Internet Café 2010-2011. Teamed with a Mental Health professional and non-profit to implement a place were people recovering from mental illness could safely interact with the community. It was supported by a grant from the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services. The model included hire people recovering from mental illness as staff.
RATHEON COMPANY Jun 1982 to Jan 2000 Lexington, MA
Most of the systems below involve the implementation of the latest science from real time models of the ionosphere to food safety on a ship. I am used to stepping into a management position, learning from the people who are doing the work, but the technology and their tasks, synergizing it onto a plan and budget, and leading the group to go from a stack of specifications to a system in the hands of the operators. I was considered one of the best and one of the best at effective risk management.
HALF TIME 1993-2000
Business Development and On-Going Program Support (Half time, home based in Montana) 1993 to 2000
Director, Data Acquisitions Directorate, Program Manager, Test Director, Engineer and Software for large scale real time systems
UNITED STATS Air Force, Captain Jan 1970 to May 1982
Cobra Judy DEPUTY PROGRAM MANAGER (SHIPBORNE INTEL. DA T A COLLECTION)
Cobra Dane 14TH AIR FORCE TEST TEAM (INTELLIGENCE LONG RANGE SENSOR)
AN/FPS-85 SOFTWARE AND SYSTEMS (SPACETRACK, MISSILE EARLY WARNING) 1970 to 1975 2 Maintained operational real-time software and performed operational readiness and
Taught Computer Science at the College Level on Military Base, Orange College
WORK 1963 to 1969
Paid for College and lived on the economy, while taking a full engineering load at college 3
COMMERCIAL PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT
Help Yourself To Natural Health 1995 to 1997 Organized 20 authors and professionals to create a multi-media, comprehensive reference, focused on naturopathic medical practices, but including orthodox medicine. The product included a 15,000 source line development in a multi-media specific Object Oriented language combined with “C.” This was not licensed due to the market shifting to the Internet.
Letter Drop 1990 to 1995 Developed a word game. Licensed to Centron Software and on the consumer market for three years.
Bridge (the card game) Scoring Calculator (Patent 4130871) 1977 to 1984 Developed a microprocessor based calculator that keeps score for bridge. Endorsed by Charles Goren (a leading bridge expert) and licensed to Tri Sigma. It was on the consumer market for five years.
University of Florida, Gainesville, FL (and extension at Eglin AFB, FL.)
Master of Science, Industrial and Systems Engineering, 1975
University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
Bachelor of Science, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, 1969
CONSERVATION ACTIVIST TRAINING (BY INVITATION, SPONSORED BY PATAGONIA)
ADVANCED MANAGEMENT PROGRAM, HARBIDGE HOUSE (RAYTHEON SPONSORED)
PROGRAM MANAGEMENT & TOTAL QUALITY MANAGEMENT (RAYTHEON SPONSORED)
US AIR FORCE – SQUADRON OFFICERS SCHOOL – 3 MONTH COURSE)
SPACE OPERATIONS & RADAR THEORY AND MAINTENANCE 1970