Born and raised in Birmingham, AL, Jim Sydnor graduated from California State University – Fullerton with a major in Sociology and minor in Philosophy.  He continued his studies at San Francisco State University, earning an interdisciplinary master’s degree.  During this time Jim presented and won awards for his academic work at numerous international conferences in the United States and Canada.  Jim competed nationally in policy debate for a total of nine years between high school and college.  In high school he won numerous local tournaments, and won the Alabama state tournament twice.  In college he won the Northwestern regional tournament, took home the top speaker award at the California state tournament, and placed in the top 15 teams at nationals.  He previously coached numerous nationally successful teams at the high school and college level.  Jim hopes to use his time with Impact America to grow professionally as he works to empower students in and out of the classroom.