James had a long and successful career as a US federal employee, most recently in the US Environmental Protection Agency, where he worked on global health and environmental policy and represented US interests in major multilateral organisations such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and United Nations Environment Program (UNEP).
In later life, he developed a second career as a singer and performer after his magnificent voice was discovered. As well as being a core member of the choir at the New Psalmist Baptist Church in Baltimore, USA, James performed all over the world, from Parisian jazz clubs to Windsor Castle.
In person James was unfailingly courteous and considerate but discovering social media in 2011 gave him an outlet for his passionately held opinions. As a former colleague observed: 'That mild exterior, beautiful manners and courtly demeanour, I learned over the years, frames a mind and soul of burning intensity and unwavering integrity.'
He became famous for his Facebook 'rants', often written with pithy, sometimes angry humour, and this led to the publication of his book: Social Media and Me: A Fossil's Tale in 2017.
He was born in Baltimore, USA, where he lived with his wife Barbara. A service celebrating his life will be held at the New Psalmist Baptist Church in Baltimore on Saturday January 18.
James always began Faith in Water Trustees' Meetings with the question: 'How will I know this meeting has ended?' It was his way of ensuring that we had a good meeting, that we shared openly and honestly and reached our objectives and that we ended satisfied we had done our best.
James, we wish our 'meeting' with you had not ended so soon. We will miss you. Rest in peace.