Jim Overman is a 1969 graduate of the University of Oklahoma with a BS in Geography. After going to work for the Dow Chemical Company in 1974 he completed a technical equivalency in chemistry through a special program with Brazosport College. He has almost 59 years of experience in the Volunteer Fire Service, Industrial Emergency Response and Planning, and Incident Management.
His career began in 1961 as a Junior Auxiliary Firefighter with the Freeport Volunteer Fire Department. He retired from the Lake Jackson Volunteer Fire Department in 2001. During his career at Dow, he worked in research and then in production as a Safety, Environmental, and Training Coordinator. Following that, he became the Environmental Emergency Response Coordinator for Dow Texas Operations where he also served as a member of the Dow Emergency Response Team for offsite and transportation emergencies.
From 1976 to 2007 he taught firefighting classes at the Texas A&M Annual Municipal Fire School. The class taught was designated as FF V and/or FF IV at various times over the years. It essentially was advanced firefighting of industrial fires and hazardous materials training for municipal fire fighters. Since 1997, he has been active in teaching ICS to the private and public sector. In most cases, that teaching has involved one or more exercises tailored to the needs of the particular class From 1992 –2011 he was an industry representative to the US Coast Guard Houston-Galveston Area Committee. For the last several years have been co-chair of the Joint Training and Drill Subcommittee.
The Area Committee is chartered to plan for oil spills and hazardous materials releases in the Houston-Galveston Area. In 1992 he became Co-chair of the USEPA Integrated Contingency Plan Work Group and from 1993 - 1996 he was Co-chair of the EPA Region 6 Regional Response Team's Industry Work Group. From 2002 – 2010 he was Co-chair of the US Coast Guard Houston-Galveston Area Maritime Security Committee (AMSC) Joint Training and Drill Subcommittee. The AMSC is chartered to write and maintain the Area Maritime Security Plan for the Houston-Galveston area. At various times he was a member of the Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), Dow representative to Brazosport Industrial CAER, and community representative to the local school district crisis management team. Since his retirement from Dow he has continued to be involved in incident management teams including being a Contract Consultant with Tetra Tech, Inc. assisting in planning the Liberty RadEx National Level Tier Exercise.
From May 2010 through April 2011 he was a Contract Consultant with Tetra Tech, Inc. assisting in planning the Liberty RadEx National Level Tier Exercise. From May 2010 through April 2011 he served in several positions on the MC252 spill including Operations Staging Area Branch Director and Deputy Operations Staging Branch Director and Operations Facility Demobilization Division supervisor for the Eastern Area of Operations of the MC252 Oil Spill (Mobile Command). Since then, he served as an ICS consultant to unified command and Deputy Planning Section Chief for the Texas City “Y” Spill Matagorda Command. This was a “Type 1” Oil Spill Response. From May 2, 2014 – May 9, 2014 he served as an ICS and Spill Management Consultant, evaluator and coach for Operation Golden Shield. This was a transnational oil spill exercise with Shell involving Malaysia and Brunei. During this exercise he coached the Command Staff (PIO/JIC, LNO, and SOFR). He served as the Logistics Section Chief on a spill In Mosier OR and recently as the Base Manager for the Harris County stand-up of the Covid-19 facility at NRG Park. Jim currently resides in Fredericksburg, TX where he lives with his wife, Pam. He continues to be active in community affairs including the Morning Rotary Club, the Good Samaritan Center, and the National Museum of the Pacific War.