James is a lifelong resident of Texas and the Permian Basin and is a graduate of Snyder High School. He attended the University of Texas at Austin and graduated from Concordia University in Austin.

For over a decade, he served as a legislative aide in the Texas House of Representatives and the United States House of Representatives. In 2003, James became the President of the Midland-Odessa Transportation Alliance, tasked with the goal of improving infrastructure in the Permian Basin and developing the La Entrada al Pacifico Trade Corridor.

He has subsequently lead efforts to bring I-14 to the Permian Basin and Concho Valley, formed the Permian Basin Coalition to educate local officials about the energy industry and its impact, as well as, the Drive SMART campaign to raise driver awareness and reduce crashes and fatalities. During his tenure at MOTRAN he has worked to bring about an additional $1.5 billion in funding for area infrastructure.

In 2004, James was appointed by then House Speaker Tom Craddick as a Commissioner for the State Commission on Emergency Communications and was reappointed in 2007 and 2013 to oversee our state’s 9-1-1 and Poison Control programs.

From 2010 through 2017, James served as Midland County Republican Chairman. He also serves as a board member of the Southwest 66 Credit Union, the U.S.-Mexico Export Council, and has previously served as a representative to the Border Trade Advisory Committee.