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Jim was born on December 14, 1953 and grew up in the Birmingham, Michigan area. He attended Michigan State University and subsequently studied law and received his Juris Doctorate from the Detroit College of Law. Jim began his 42-year career in the construction industry during high school when he worked for his family’s company, Goss Mechanical.
After law school, Jim went to work for Bechtel Power and later worked for the Association of Underground Contractors before joining GLFEA. As CEO, Jim was aided for over 15 years by Marge Grabenhorst, his invaluable office administrator. He remained deeply committed to the success of industry in Michigan through the many roles he fulfilled with numerous organizations. When Jim passed away, he was in Washington, D.C. attending various TAUC meetings and acting in his role as board member and LEO Committee chairman.
“We have lost a member of the TAUC family,” said TAUC CEO Steve Lindauer. “Jim was intimately involved in our organization and the union construction industry as a whole. He was never hesitant to participate and contribute when called upon. He will be sorely missed not only by me personally, but also by everyone who knew and worked with him. Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.”
Jim’s family will receive friends at A.J. Desmond and Sons Funeral Home (Vasu, Rodgers & Connell Chapel), 32515 Woodward Avenue, Royal Oak, MI 48073 on Saturday, December 15th from 1:00 – 7:00pm.
A memorial service was held on Sunday, December 16th at 2:00pm at First Presbyterian Church of Birmingham, in Birmingham, Michigan.
Memorials may be made in Jim’s name to Camp Skyline, 1669 West Maple, Birmingham, MI 48009 or Gleaners Food Bank, 2131 Beaufait Street, Detroit, MI 48207.