Jim Spencer

James M. Spencer ’85

James M. “Jim” Spencer ’85 received a BA in history from Lewis & Clark College. While at Lewis and Clark, he participated in overseas programs in Thailand and China. He is a partner in Vin De Garde LLC, a wine import and distribution company headquartered in Portland, Oregon.  Jim also has a deep interest in socially responsible investing and is an investor in and advisor to multiple small and medium sized companies in the United States.  Mr. Spencer serves on the boards of the Clean Water Institute in Hillsboro, Oregon; and the Greater Yellowstone Coalition in Bozeman, Montana. 

After graduating, Mr. Spencer worked for a Congressman in Washington, D.C. In 1986 he attended the Intensive Chinese summer program at Middlebury College and then moved to Taiwan, where he continued his language studies and worked for a Taiwanese trading company. 

Upon his return to the US, Jim worked for the Oregon Economic Development Department as a Trade and Investment consultant. After leaving the State he was employed by CH2M Hill-IDC, a high-tech engineering and construction firm, managing business development and setting up their operations in China, Taiwan, Korea and Southeast. From 2001-2004 he served as senior director of industrial sales for Asia; and co-managed Fluor Corporation’s (NYSE: FLR) hi-tech construction and engineering division.

Mr. Spencer left the corporate world in 2004 to develop a consulting practice and pursue small business opportunities. In addition to Vin De Garde, he is also a partner in several beer and wine distributors in the Northern Rockies, and he is active in the angel investment community.

Jim is married to Polly Spencer, and they have two children. His brother, Douglas Spencer ’79, also received a BA in history.

Mr. Spencer established the Spencer Family Overseas Study Scholarship in 1997 with his parents, Ed and Harriet Spencer. 

In addition to education, Jim’s passions include fly fishing, cycling, hiking and conservation.