Originally from Salinas CA, James Stewart moved to Santa Rosa (Sonoma County) in 1996 with his wife, Neila, when he transferred from Hewlett-Packard in Roseville to HP/Agilent’s site in Santa Rosa. He managed procurement activities and transfer projects over the course of 17 years. He most recently was the program manager for Boeing’s 787 landing gear electrical wire harnesses and managed contracts while at Icore International, a division of Zodiac Aerospace. Prior to managing projects in the aircraft and high tech industry, he enjoyed a career using fermentations that ranged from production of wines at Rombauer Vineyards to biotechnology experiments and production of tPA at Genentech. James has a B.S. degree in Fermentation Science from UC Davis (1983), interned at Sokol Blosser winery in Oregon; and earned an MBA degree from the University of Chicago (1989) and interned at Pfizer in NYC.
James’ career was interrupted after he was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) in 2007. James’ first symptoms were experienced in 2003 while cycling his favorite Sonoma county roads. Initially diagnosed with benign recurring remitting MS, his symptoms developed further into primary progressive MS. Five years ago the disease progressed such that he could no longer participate in full time employment. This empowered an interest in performing activism to raise awareness about MS among politicians and other interested people. James is volunteering with the National MS Society as a District Activist Leader and communicates with elected officials about issues important to those living with MS and other chronic diseases. The Americans for Cures Foundation also interests James, as many hope it holds the key to finding the cure for MS.
Not only is James a connoisseur of fine wine (and beer), but he enjoys cooking as well. For musical entertainment, he has sung first tenor in the Sonoma Chanson Men’s Chorus for over 18 years and he regularly plays guitar at an assisted living center with the Grove Street Players. He volunteers to teach first graders how to read and also enjoys his two cats. You can follow James’ activism activities on Twitter: James Stewart@james_jamstew