James Marty “Jim” Adams, a former long-time resident of Burlington, Iowa passed away quietly in his home in Littleton, Colorado on Thursday, December 17, 2020.
Jim was born on May 16, 1930 in Council Bluffs, Iowa to Porter and Mary Adams. He graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School in 1948. After completing his freshman year at Creighton University, he attended Iowa State University where he was a cadet in the Army Reserve Officer Training Corps and a member of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity. He graduated in December of 1952 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. While attending Iowa State, he met his future wife, Jane McAdam, and they married in Whiting, Indiana in January of 1953. After graduation, Jim served as a 1st Lieutenant in the Field Artillery of the U.S. Army stationed at Ft. Sill, Oklahoma. Following an honorable discharge, he attended law school at the University of Iowa where he graduated and was admitted to the practice of law in 1958. While in law school, he was a member of the Order of the Coif, a national law school scholastic honor society. Following law school,
Jim was employed by Burlington Truck Lines in Galesburg, Illinois, the law firm of O’Connor, Thomas, McDermott & Wright in Dubuque, Iowa, and by the American Can Co. in Neenah, Wisconsin. In 1965, Jim settled his family in Burlington, Iowa where he worked as an associate for the law firm of Hirsch, Riepe, & Wright (today known as Hirsch, Adams, Putnam, Cahill & Wiley) becoming a partner in 1968. Jim enjoyed his practice with this firm until 2010 when he retired after more than fifty years in the practice of law.
Jim was a loving husband and father. In addition to raising a family and practicing law, Jim enjoyed playing golf, bowling, traveling, and following his favorite sports teams. He participated in many civic, educational and charitable groups for the betterment of his community. He served on the Burlington School Board from 1969 – 1984 and as president from 1975-1976. He served on the Iowa Association of School Boards from 1979-1985 and as president from 1982-1983.
He was a member of the Burlington Noon Lions Club from 1965 – 1976 and served as president from 1972 – 1973. He served on the Burlington-West Burlington Area United Way from 1970 -1977 and was campaign chair in 1973 and president in 1974. Jim also served as co-chair for the Library Capital Fund Drive in 2000.
He was active in the Shining Trail Council of Girl Scouts and was a Life Member of Girl Scouts, USA. The council awarded Jim the Thanks Badge in 1988 and the Thanks Badge II in 1992 in recognition of his efforts to improve opportunities for girls. He served as co-chair for the Camp L-Kee-Ta Fund Drive for the Shining Trail of Girl Scouts in 1971 and again in 1992.
Jim was a member of the First United Methodist Church while living in Burlington. During that time, he served on the Board of Trustees, the Finance Committee and was chairman of that committee. He served as co-chair of the Staff Parish Relations Committee and was a one of the chefs for Celebrate the Seasons. He was a part of Sunday school classes, choir, and assisted with various projects. He was on the task force that established the Endowment Fund for the church as well as assisted in various fundraisers on behalf of the church.
In 2004, the Iowa State Bar Association recognized Jim for his service to his community beyond his role as an advocate and interpreter of the law.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents, daughter Anne Hill and her husband Roger Hill, and daughter- in-law Mary Adams. He is survived by Jane, his wife of 67 years; son Mark Adams; daughters Sara (Steve) Olsen; Susan (Steve) Foss; Barb (Tim) Seavy; grandchildren Kimberley, Elizabeth, Kylie, Elyse, and Eric and great-grandchildren Serenity and Arlo.
Memorial gifts in Jim’s name may be made to the Burlington Public Library, Burlington, Iowa.
Cremation has been entrusted in Littleton, Colorado.
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