Jim Palmer, Board Director
Jim Palmer is President of the Orange County Rescue Mission, the county’s most comprehensive private homeless services provider. The Rescue Mission started with nine people and has grown into the largest non-profit, faith-based organization serving more than 19,800 people throughout Orange, Riverside, and San Diego Counties by providing more than 1.7 million units of service and more than 1 million meals in 2010.
Under Mr. Palmer’s visionary leadership, OCRM has received national recognition for success rates of client graduates and entrepreneurial approaches to developing self-sufficiency, including the 211th Presidential Point of Light award, Governor Schwarzenegger’s Service Award (2004), and recognition from President George W. Bush at the Faith-based Initiatives Conference in Washington, D.C. On July 3rd, 2007 President George W. Bush nominated Mr. Palmer for the position of a Director on the Board of the Corporation for National and Community Service. Sixty days later, the United States Senate unanimously confirmed Palmer’s nomination for his term ending 2011.
Mr. Palmer is the only person to have served on three levels of government simultaneously. He served as a local elected official, County Commissioner, and Federal Official from 2006 to 2010. Mr. Palmer continues to serve as a County Housing Commissioner, and a Senate Confirmed Presidential Appointee. He served four years on the Tustin City Council and is the Orange County Board of Supervisors’ unanimous choice for Commissioner on the Orange County Commission to End Homelessness. One of his significant achievements was authoring and implementing the most comprehensive government transparency law in California.
Mr. Palmer served as the Commander of the Orange County Sheriffs’ Department volunteer Professional Services Responders. He commanded a group of over 400 volunteers that provided $5 million dollars worth of service. He has personally volunteered more than 2,000 hours, in the areas of homeland security, fire arms range master and commander of the unit.
Mr. Palmer is an advocate for children’s issues in Orange County. He fostered nine children and adopted three. As a father, Mr. Palmer spends time with his two sons and two daughters. In his free time, he is a rancher raising horses and goats. Mr. Palmer resides in the City of Tustin with his four children.