Jim Francis, Idaho Falls City Council Member
Department Liaison Assignments: Idaho Falls Police & Parks & Recreation
Co-liaison: Community Development Services
Board Liaison: Bonneville Metropolitan Planning Organization (BMPO) Policy Board & the Idaho Falls Library Board
Other: Idaho Falls Power Board, City Club, Idaho Falls Arts Council, Idaho Master Naturalist Program, Mae Neuber Board
Connections to the Idaho Falls Community:
Jim came to Idaho Falls in 1953 at the age of four when his father took a job working with the early test reactors. Jim attended Emerson and Linden Park elementary schools and graduated from Idaho Falls High School in 1966, the last year in which there was only one high school in District 91. After leaving Idaho Falls for a few years to complete his college education and begin his teaching career, he returned to the city with his wife in 1977 as a teacher of history in the Idaho Falls school system.
Jim is currently active in the Big Brother/Big Sister Program in Idaho Falls and in the Idaho Fish and Game Master Naturalist program. He is also a volunteer history lecturer for the Friends for Learning program at University Place.
Jim holds a B.A. in history from Arizona State University, 1970, and an M.A. in history from the University of British Columbia, 1978.
Jim taught history in the public schools for thirty-six years including several years in East Cleveland, Ohio, in the 1970s before his return to his hometown in 1977. In Idaho Falls he taught four years at O.E. Bell Junior High, six years at Clair E. Gale Junior High, and twenty-three years at Idaho Falls High School. His main fields of teaching were U.S. History, Modern European History, Chinese History, and Advanced Placement European and U.S. History.
Since his retirement as a full-time educator, Jim has taught part time for Idaho State University’s History Department.
Awards and Honors:
Idaho Falls City Club John Hansen Award for Civility and Public Service, 2017
Idaho Humanities Council Award for Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities, 2011
National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Certification, 1999, renewed 2009
Idaho Teacher of the Year, 1997
National Endowment for the Humanities Teacher-Scholar for Idaho, 1989-1990
The Idaho Seventh Judicial District’s Law Day Liberty Bell Award for Dedication to the Teaching of Democracy, 1988