Jim R. Alexander, Ph.D., Project Director
Professor Alexander has enjoyed a distinguished career combining roles as professor of political science, academic leader and administrator, and elected public servant. Dr. Alexander is Director of the Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas at Texas Woman’s University, where he also is Emeritus Professor of Government. He served as Chair of the Department of History and Government at TWU for twenty-three years.
He earned his Ph.D. in American Public Policy and Public Law from the School of Government and Public Administration of the American University in Washington, D.C. in 1974. He previously had received both his Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts degrees from Texas A&M University-Commerce, where he served as President of the Student Government Association and majored in Government and Business Administration/Economics.
He joined the political science faculty of Midwestern State University in 1972. He became Coordinator of the Criminal Justice Program in 1974. In 1975, he became National Advisor for Alpha Phi Sigma, the National Criminal Justice Honor Society, a position he held for more than a decade. In addition, he was elected to the Executive Board of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences and served from 1982-85. He also has served at various times as President of the Association of Texas Law Enforcement Educators, President of the Texas Conference of University Criminal Justice Educators, President of the Texas Association of Criminal Justice Educators, and President of the Southwestern Association of Criminal Justice Educators. He has written several articles and book reviews in the field of criminal justice and made numerous presentations at state, regional, national, and international professional meetings. He has been selected as a National Defense Education Act Fellow, a Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Fellow, a Malone Fellow, and has received various grants in support of his research. He has worked as a Consultant in criminal justice, leadership, and executive development for the States of California, Louisiana, South Carolina, and Texas and done manuscript review for various journals and publishing companies. He also has worked as an expert witness for several major law firms.
Professor Alexander was appointed to serve on the Governor’s Criminal Justice Advisory Council from 1981-83. In 1984-85, he was Chair of the North Central Texas Council of Governments’ Law Enforcement Training Committee, which oversees the work of the Regional Law Enforcement Academy. He was a member of the Texas Coordinating Board's Criminal Justice Transfer Curriculum Committee in 1982-84, which developed the statewide core curriculum in criminal justice. He has presented testimony on various matters of public policy before committees of both houses of the Texas Legislature as well as both houses of the United States Congress. Dr. Alexander also served as an Assistant to the President of Texas Woman’s University in the area of governmental relations from 1995 to 1999.
He began his career in public service with election to the Denton City Council in 1986. Dr. Alexander was re-elected to serve three consecutive two-year terms—the maximum allowed by the Denton City Charter. He represented the City of Denton with the Texas Municipal League and the National League of Cities. He also was a member of the North Central Texas Regional Transportation Council—the body which does transportation planning for the Dallas-Fort Worth region. In 1989, he was elected to the Executive Board of the North Central Texas Council of Governments, which represents over two hundred member governments in the sixteen counties of the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex with a population of six million people. Professor Alexander served four years in this capacity including a term as President of the Board in 1991-92. He was elected in 1993 as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Denton Independent School District. He currently is serving his seventh three-year term. He was President of the Board in 1999-2000 and 2009-2011. This recognized district is responsible for the education of more than 25,000 public school students and employs some 3200 faculty and staff. He was selected as a member of the 2004 Leadership TASB class, a leadership development program of the Texas Association of School Boards.
Dr. Alexander continues teaching graduate and undergraduate government courses in American Constitutional Law and Public Policy at TWU. In addition, he is the Director at TWU of the Bill Blackwood Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas. Created by the Texas Legislature in 1987 and recognized nationally and internationally as a leadership and executive development program for law enforcement officials, the Institute is a joint venture with the Center for Executive Development at Texas A&M University and the School of Criminal Justice at Sam Houston State University.