Jim began his involvement playing baritone horn, spending his first year with Yearsley Blackhawk Cadets, then six years with Liberty Bell Cadets. While serving in the United States Navy for 15 months, he played snare drum, marched as drum major and served as director of the corps. Many of his accomplishments were achieved during his association with PAL Cadets of Philadelphia. He was co-founder and director of the corps and served as marching and maneuvering instructor, brass arranger and show coordinator for 16 years. He was also show coordinator with Cranford Patriots for two years. He has served as president of Reilly Raiders Alumni, vice president of the Garden State Association, and judged music and M & M for the Mid-Atlantic Judging Association. As director of the PAL Cadets, he obtained more than 300 college scholarships and financial aid for drum corps members. He also helped initiate a college program in music education for new drum and bugle corps members with limited formal music education.