Dr. Jim Beddow was the 2017-18 board chair for the Rural Schools Collaborative. Jim is a product of small town South Dakota. He grew up observing his father, an implement dealer, investing deeply in his community as mayor and civic leader. Beddow’s professional journey took him to the University of Oklahoma for a doctorate in rural history and an assortment of teaching and administrative assignments in small colleges ending with a 13 year presidency at Dakota Wesleyan University.
Jim has spent much of his professional life creating and supporting rural-centric initiatives and collaborations including the James River Collaborative, the Rural Housing Collaborative, and the Rural Learning Center. He is a co-founder of the Rural Weaver Consulting group and is currently engaged as a consultant with several state-wide and regional rural education initiatives focusing on helping rural communities and schools “Get Better Together.” Jim and his wife, Jean, reside in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.