Associate Professor and Chair – Entrepreneurship and Franchising Management, Northwood University
Jim began his career with an internship in the accounting department of Bil-Mar Foods, a privately owned family business, during my senior year of college. Bil-Mar sold its products under the Mr. Turkey brand throughout the Midwest and beyond. While at Bil-Mar the company was sold to Sara Lee. In 1988, Jim changed careers and went into banking. Jim was at Comerica until 2002 working out of multiple offices including Grand Rapids, Jackson and Midland Michigan as well as Pleasanton California. While at Comerica Jim handled a seventy-million-dollar loan portfolio with approximately eighty customers. In 2002, Jim went from the relative safety of the large corporate environment and left the bank for one of my customers, Packaging Direct, Inc. (PDI). PDI is a manufacturer of thermo-formed plastic packaging primarily for the fresh cut food industry selling to 43 states, Canada, Mexico and the Virgin Islands. Jim joined the company in a newly created position as the number two person in the organization. In 2005 the business was sold to CM Products and Jim stayed on as Director of Operations until 2007. In 2007, Jim joined three long time business acquaintances and they purchased MedAudit Services, Inc. in Midland Michigan. MedAudit provides its customers with medical cost containment services. MedAudit was sold in January of 2015 to an employee of the business. Beginning in August of 2009, Jim joined Northwood University as an Assistant Professor and Chair of the Entrepreneurship department. He had been an adjunct instructor at Northwood in the Banking and Finance department on and off since 1999. With over 99% of all businesses being classified as small businesses and a strong desire by our students to control their own destiny the Entrepreneurship department is a key component of the Northwood degree program. In the fall of 2013 we launched a new Franchising Management major program on the Michigan campus and Jim is also the Chair of that Department/program. The Franchising Management program is the only undergrad program specializing in Franchising in North America.