JIM JONES grew up on his family’s farm in Eden, Idaho. He graduated from the University of Oregon in 1964 with a BA degree in Political Science and a Second Lieutenant commission in the U.S. Army. He received a law degree from Northwestern University School of Law in 1967.

Jim served as an artillery officer in the U.S. Army, including a 13-month tour in Vietnam. He was honorably discharged as a Captain in August, 1969. Jim received an Army Commendation Medal for his civic action work with an orphanage run by the Cao Dai Church in Tay Ninh Province, Vietnam, as well as a Bronze Star and five Air Medals.

Jim served as legislative assistant to former U.S. Senator Len B. Jordan for three years (1970-1972). He practiced law in Jerome, Idaho, from 1973 until he was elected as Idaho Attorney General in 1982. Jim served eight years as Attorney General. He practiced law in Boise from 1991 until being elected to the Idaho Supreme Court in 2004. He served twelve years on the Court.

Jim’s earlier book, A Little Dam Problem: How Idaho almost lost control of the Snake River, was released in 2016. The book garnered him the Outstanding Achievement in the Humanities Award from the Idaho Humanities Council in 2017. He is now a would-be columnist, writing about military affairs, foreign and domestic policy, immigrants, refugees, climate change and a wide variety of other state and national topics. His columns can be found at

Jim is married to Boise author Kelly Jones. They have three children and eight grandchildren.