Norco College Commencement 2012: Dr. Jim Thomas, Faculty Speaker
College: Norco College
Dr. James Thomas, C.B.O.
Professor of Construction Technology
Professor Thomas has enjoyed working for the Riverside Community College District full time since August of 2000. He began teaching part time in the fall semester of 1994. Jim considers students in the Construction Technology program a joy to teach. They are focused and eager to learn and as a result do well academically and professionally.
He has also taught part time for Cal State San Bernardino in the field of Public Administration and has taught in the undergraduate, masters, and doctorate programs.
Jim is a life-long learner who earned associate degrees from Chaffey College in general studies (1973) and in Industrial Electricity (1990), and from San Bernardino Valley College in Engineering/Inspection Technology (1986). He earned his B.A. from Prescott College in Construction and Technology (1992). Jim received his master's degree from Cal State San Bernardino in Public Administration (1997). He earned his doctorate degree from the University of La Verne in Public Administration (2003) with his dissertation topic on "The Effectiveness of TQM in Local Government." Jim earned full professorship from Norco College in April, 2011.
Prior to teaching at Norco, Jim taught in the Develop Center for Handicapped Minors program for San Bernardino County School for five years, enjoying the opportunity to work with severely and profoundly disabled children with multiple physical handicaps. Primarily due to Prop 13, Jim switched to construction going through the Carpenter's Apprenticeship Program. He worked as a carpenter for seven years before becoming an inspector for the City of Rancho Cucamonga for eight years. Before retiring from city government in 2000, Jim worked another eight years at the City of Norco as their building official.
Jim enjoys camping in his RV with Cathy, his wife of 40 years, and their children and grandchildren. He also enjoys the opportunity to surf with his son and grandsons at Southern California beaches. He has been a part-time pastor for 36 years.