Jim's Career

Jim at work

Communications /Web Content / Management / Always Writing

CAREER PROFILE:

Jim Alexander has extensive professional experience in creative communications, web site creation and redirection, management, and public affairs. Current focus on web site management for select clients and nonprofit management services. Core competencies and expertise in:

  • Web Content and Design
  • Writing and Editing
  • Non-profit Management
  • Computer Systems Management
  • Coordinating Specialists
  • General Management
  • Public and Employee Outreach
  • State and Local Govt. Affairs

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE:
(Chronological)

Principal, JimQuest Communications — current

  • Personal business to provide web design and consulting services.
  • Created and maintained web sites of varying size and complexity for Train Collectors Association (multiple sites), Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania (multiple generations), Lawrenceville Main Street, NAMI Mercer, Society Hill at Lawrenceville, and other clients. Includes writing and organization of content, site objectives analysis, applicable technologies.
  • Developed and implemented mobile web site creation capability for use where needed.
  • Provide computer advisory and maintenance services to Train Collectors Association, a 22,000 member organization.
  • Built and managed 25 station local area network at Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, including business planning, budgeting, asset management, and purchasing.
  • Produce electronic newsletters, group discussion sites and online payment procedures.
  • Successful application for and administration of grants from North American Railway Foundation and Norfolk Southern Foundation to facilitate computer system allowing internet searches of library and archives catalogs regarding railroad industry history.

Non-Profit Management

  • President, Board of Trustees, Society Hill at Lawrenceville Condominium Association. Initiatives included competitive solicitations for site management services, implementation of organic turf management program, budget system enhancements, newsletter writing, improved resident communications.
  • Assist Lawrenceville Main Street organization in web, computer, and other issues.
  • Collaborate with Development staff of nonprofit CCRC in devising and making informational outreach presentations.
  • Also see Friends of Railroad Museum entry below.

Friends of Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, Strasburg, PA 1992 – 2015

Various: President, VP, Board of Directors; Technical Systems Management and Webmaster

  • In several executive, consulting and ongoing capacities, provided management, marketing, communications and computer system services to this active non-profit with nationwide membership.
  • Spearheaded effort, designed, and wrote content for comprehensive museum web site, appealing to railroad fans, historians, educators, and the general public. Serve as Webmaster and project director. Design, maintain and update content and look; new features added regularly.
  • Planned and managed implementation of new computer systems; devised LAN strategy; systems planning; server operations; workstation installation and troubleshooting. Procurement and vendor relations.
  • Created multimedia shows on railroad history and for visitor attraction. Made research presentations on railroad history. Named Volunteer of Year.
  • As Board Member, Vice President, President, and management advisor, prepared budgets, oversaw personnel and business policies as well as grants, collaborated with State government officials. Promoted new management and fund raising initiatives.
  • Wrote and edited publications; seminar / event planning; advise Marketing Director. Logo development and expanded outreach efforts.

Rider University, Lawrenceville, NJ,
Web Content Manager 2000 – 2001

First incumbent, initiated major rebuild of outdated 7,000-page web site in concert with Marketing Council, Public Relations Office, and university management.

  • Implemented interim “new look” page templates for university identity and standard look/feel and easy navigation.
  • Redesigned content of hundreds of pages in preparation for subsequent conversion to “permanent” new look.
  • Introduced new features — campus tour, seasonal / thematic information, audience portals.
  • Created major fund-raising site (The Campaign for Rider University) with on-line giving.
  • Conducted stakeholder interviews; presented strategic overviews to management.
  • Drafted Web Style Guide, wrote analysis of web site’s needs. Gave hands-on and classroom instruction to faculty and staff. Promoted updating of content for user relevance/impact.
  • Advocated usability design and audience orientation. Developed author toolkit.
  • Worked closely with Information Technologies staff on server and technical design aspects.

Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, Harrisburg, PA 1997
Deputy Executive Director – Customer Service

Senior Management Executive with full responsibility for Marketing, Communications Center, Public Information and Public Information, Fare Collection, State Police (1500+ employees). Final sign-off for all publications (newsletters, brochures, handouts) and public information.
First incumbent under a periodic reorganization.

  • Initiated service improvements and organizational efforts to enhance customer service:
    – established and directed the first Turnpike-wide Customer Appreciation Day, with first use of web for public notification.
    – initiated employee newsletter and instituted follow-up customer service program.
  • Strengthened morale of Fare Collection workforce while improving customer service. Improved communications and mutual respect through positive management efforts.
  • Developed web-site reorganization plan, subsequently implemented. Involved transfer of function, site enhancement recommendations, timely updating.
  • Recommended enhancements to radio communications system, with creation of new Duty Officer posts.
  • Initiated new selection methods for middle management posts.
  • Brought FY 98 budget of $81 million in within (flat) target despite wage increases.

New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, Trenton, NJ 1970 – 1996

Director of Administration (1982 – 1996)
Served as top administrative career officer to guide internal administrative operations including $1 billion budget preparation and execution, facilities management, departmental technology strategy planning and management of central services, business operations, liaison with central State offices including Office of Management and Budget and General Services Administration.

  • Built 600 desk computer system, including central infrastructure; related planning and training.
  • Managed both major expansion and retrenchment of departmental budget, reflecting economic changes and leadership philosophies.
  • Managed planning for and occupancy of new 8-story department headquarters.
  • Directed system to control major grant programs to local governments and non-profit organizations.
  • Served as advisor to ten Commissioners over the years, on broad range of policy and administrative matters, with special emphasis on continuity of business affairs and internal organization.
  • Collaborated with Public Information Office for orientation and consistency.
  • Upon advent of NJ State web site, personally planned and directed initial Community Affairs home and other pages, wrote content and provided direction to technical staff as content was expanded. Established initial Internet training and access methods for department staff.
  • Administered a department-wide publications control program focusing on quality control and efficiency. Created and issued a departmental publications standards manual.
  • Created internal communications to enhance management/employee relations during restructuring (budgetary, organizational, office moves and computer system growth).

Chief, Bureau of Local Management Services (1970 – 1982)

  • First incumbent, built the job.
  • Created consulting organization serving NJ local governments in multiple professional disciplines including city management, budgeting, IT, city planning, personnel, debt management, public works, federal aid management, etc.
  • Taught municipal finance and administrative subjects to local government officials at Rutgers Extension Service and in direct field presentations.
  • Strategized and implemented outreach programs to local government / community groups. Organized series of Departmental Roadshows to bring State officials to local venues for exchanging views and presenting State programs.
  • Chief support official for Community Education initiative and for Departmental assistance to bolster city government in Atlantic City immediately following adoption of casino gambling law.

Previously Assistant Business Administrator, City of Trenton, NJ (Six years)
Budget, personnel, development, grants management, coordination of operating departments.

Additional municipal government training: Research aide to City Manager of Asbury Park, NJ; graduate school field assignments in Philadelphia Police Department Commissioner’s Office and Philadelphia Zoning Board of Adjustment.

EDUCATION:

Wharton Graduate School, University of Pennsylvania
Samuel S. Fels Scholar and Institute Fellow
Master of Governmental Administration

Middlebury College
BA cum laude, Political Science, Phi Beta Kappa

PUBLICATIONS:

  • Wrote content and design of multiple web sites.
  • 30+ Management Articles, New Jersey Municipalities.
  • Numerous management / technical assistance booklets, newsletters, reports.
  • Municipal Budget Training Manual (textbook, two editions), Rutgers University.
  • Transportation articles in Trains, Locomotive & Railway Preservation, Pennsylvania Heritage, Turnpike Traveler, Railpace, and others.
  • Web Style Guide, Rider University.
  • Human relations pieces; Associate Editor of quarterly history journal Milepost.
  • Presentations on railroad history, New Jersey history.
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