Meet Our Town Manager
Jim Rivers was sworn in as the Town of Windham's 2nd Town Manager on June 7th, 2017. Mr. Rivers comes to Windham with one of the most comprehensive resumes of any Town Administrator in the State of Connecticut. Mr. Rivers has extensive experience in many sectors including; government, manufacturing, real estate, banking, business owner, and the military. He has a demonstrated record of dedicated public service and is fully committed to improving the quality of life for all of the citizens of Windham, "It is a great honor to serve the Town of Windham as its Chief Executive Officer, there is so much potential here. I am committed to making Windham the most prosperous community in Connecticut".
Prior to his appointment in Windham Mr. Rivers was the Chief Financial Officer of a mortgage banking company, his other banking experience includes time as a Commercial Lending Officer.
He worked for 15 years in manufacturing, working his way up in various positions as an Engineering Technician, Manufacturing Supervisor, Production Manager, Manufacturing Manager, General Manager, and Business Unit Manager, for various companies. One of those companies was Rogers Corporation, at their South Windham location. He received a patent as Co-Inventor for multi-layer substrate circuitry. During his time at Rogers Corporation, Jim was extensively trained and practiced in continuous improvement tools and techniques.
Mr. Rivers spent over 30 years investing, repairing, and managing his own portfolio of commercial real estate, concentrated in Northeastern Connecticut. Most of those years he maintained these properties himself, "Out of necessity, having started with nothing, I had to learn all of the trades in order to maintain my investments". The Town of Plainfield awarded him an historic preservation award for his restoration work. He has since divested most of his real estate holdings. From 2002 until 2020, he was the founder and operator of The Key Gym, a chain of five fitness clubs located throughout Eastern Connecticut.
His time in government service includes being elected to 4 terms as First Selectman of the Town of Pomfret. He also served on the Board of Finance, the Planning and Zoning Commission, and on the School Building Committee. During his time as First Selectman he focussed on land preservation, infrastructure improvements, and lean budgets. Pomfret was awarded numerous land preservation awards during his term, preserving over 2000 acres, comprising 30 parcels, and 12 different land owners. This was accomplished by leveraging $4 million of Town funds with State and Federal grants, along with numerous gifts. The General Government budget was 10% lower at the end of his 4 terms. Pomfret received more Small Town Economic Assistance Grants than any other Town in Connecticut during his tenure. This helped to greatly expand Airline Trail access, preserve historic assets, and improve recreation and emergency response facilities. Mr. Rivers was elected and served as the Chairman of Northeast Connecticut Council of Governments.
Mr. Rivers served in the Connecticut Army National Guard as a Infantry Scout with the 169th Infantry in Rockville, Connecticut, and in the Rhode Island Army National Guard in the 172nd Infantry Mountain Warfare Unit. He attained the ranks of Sergeant and 1st Lieutenant, earning an officer commission at the University of Connecticut in 1988. He received numerous leadership awards including the Platoon Leadership Award at Ft. Bragg and he was appointed the Cadet Commander for the State of Connecticut's 286 Army Reserve Officer Training cadets.
Mr. Rivers has served, volunteered, and a member, of many different organizations: Firefighter with the Pomfret Volunteer Fire Department, Habitat for Humanity Board Member, United Services Board of Directors, Board Member of NECASA (Northeast Communities Against Substance Abuse), Pomfret Lions, Killingly Downtown Merchants, Chamber of Commerce, Master of Masonic Lodge Number 15 in Brooklyn, Corporator of Putnam Bank, Little League, and Boy Scouts. Jim and his wife Kelly, volunteered several summers at Camp Webster as Archery instructors.
Jim grew up in Killingly, graduating from high school there. He attended Thames Valley State Technical College studying Electrical and Mechanical Engineering, earned a Bachelor of General Studies degree from ECSU with a concentration in Business, and earned a Master of Business Administration from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
He has lived for 28 years in Pomfret with his wife Kelly, has two grown children residing in Florida and New York. Interesting Fact: Jim's family has long historical roots in Windham, his great-great grandmother and grandfather are buried in the North Windham Cemetery, as well as a great uncle who served and perished in WW1.