Jim Darwin, Federal Govt. & Veteran Liaison
Texas General Land Office/Texas Veterans Land Board
Jim Darwin currently serves as liaison to the federal government as well as serving as the veteran liaison for Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson. Previous to this position, Mr. Darwin served as the Assistant Deputy Commissioner of the Texas Veterans Land Board (VLB), where he oversaw the Land, Housing and Home Improvement loan programs, construction of two of the eight nursing homes and construction of two of the four state veteran cemeteries. In addition to working on veteran issues, Mr. Darwin covers issues dealing with coastal, environmental and endangered species.
Mr. Darwin’s efforts as Assistant Deputy Commissioner of the VLB were instrumental in tripling the loan production of the veterans housing assistance program from $320 million to over $1 billion in three years. He also negotiated and restructured many of the contracts saving the VLB many tens of thousands of dollars. He was instrumental in passing the federal HR 6081 the Heroes Earnings Assistance Relief Tax Act of 2008 (HEARTS Bill) in the 110th Congress, that provides for the use of tax free bonds to fund veterans loans thereby giving veterans a lower interest rate than they could get anywhere else. He has been extensively involved in the development of the RESTORE Act dealing with the BP oil spill.
Mr. Darwin left college to enlist in the United States Marine Corps Reserves in 1981. After returning to college and graduating, he received a direct commissioned to second lieutenant. He was instrumental in the development and implementation of operational reconnaissance, intelligence and training procedures currently used by national level agencies and other military services. He left active duty in 1988. He volunteered for active duty in August of 1990 for Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. Captain Darwin continued to serve in Marine Corps Reserve units until he retired in 1998.
He is a 4th generation Texan and direct descendant of the American revolutionary war. He graduated with a degree in Political Science with a double minor in Russian and conomics from the University of Texas in Arlington where he studied abroad in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe during the early 80’s.
He currently serves on the ESPN Armed Forces Bowl Game executive committee who’s theme is “More than a Bowl Game” where Jim brings our wounded warriors from all wars including Iraq and Afghanistan to the bowl game every year. Jim serves as a board member of Honor Flight Austin which takes WWII veterans to Washington to visit the WWII memorial at no cost to them. He also works with various veteran groups throughout the state helping them serve Texas Veterans.