Author, filmmaker, speaker, and entertainment executive, Jim Huggins focuses on telling stories and telling them well in order to influence society in a positive manner. At a recent Hollywood summit, Variety Entertainment referred to Dr. Huggins as one of the "top entertainment chiefs" for faith and family film, TV, and digital media. Currently, he serves as the President and CEO of New Shepherd Films, an independent film production company producing faith and family entertainment for the mainstream market. He also serves as the head of New Shepherd Entertainment, a faith and family promotional and marketing venture dedicated to being a resource to independent producers, and is a member of the Board of Advisors for Valorous TV, a network focused on bold and brave films, stories and reports of courage and uncommon valor.
With a BS in mathematics, Jim began his career as an officer in the Air Force in 1984. After a string of successes that ultimately took him to the Pentagon, he volunteered for a selectively manned position at HQ US Central Command during Operation Desert Storm and continued to serve in subsequent operations in the Middle East and northern Africa. He has received numerous awards, including the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, two Joint Service Commendation Medals, and the Air Force Commendation Medal.
Presented with unique opportunities to direct his talents toward innovative technology startup companies in the private sector, Jim moved from the Active Duty forces to the Reserves. Continued success propelled him upward, with ever-increasing responsibilities, where he excelled at a global level as part of a select management team between AMR and CSX, two of the world's largest transportation companies. Along the way, Jim earned his MS in engineering and PhD in engineering management, specializing in computer and software engineering.
Jim has taught a variety of disciplines at two major universities. He served as a professor of computer science at Campbell University, as well as an adjunct professor of aerospace studies for the Air Force, teaching Islamic Fundamentalism and The Laws of Armed Conflict at NC State University.
In 2006, Jim set his sights on the entertainment industry. Recognizing the need for family-friendly films and other entertainment products with a solid faith-based message, he turned his passion for storytelling into the driving force behind a new career. By 2009, Jim had become an award-winning stage actor, experienced director, and professionally trained TV/film actor. From this, came New Shepherd Films, an entertainment company dedicated to producing faith and family content specifically for the crossover audience.
By 2011, Jim and his team released their first film, Footprints: Angels Are Real--Some Even Have Fur. Based on the reviews, audience reactions, and an ever-increasing fan base, New Shepherd Films clearly hit the target.
Jim's desire to impact the culture around him as a storyteller, goes beyond movies--entertainment extends to books as well. To this end, Jim has become a published author, with two books in worldwide release and more in the queue! These efforts have resulted in Jim being awarded a doctor of divinity degree for his work in creative evangelism.
Jim and his wife, Leslee, their kids Emma, David, and Samuel, and their rescued German shepherd, Lily, are originally from North Carolina and today, they call Salem, Oregon, their home.