Jim Carpenter, Co-Founder
Jim co-founded Freestone Strategies in 2016, after spending more than 5 years as Principal in the public affairs consulting firm of Stratton-Carpenter & Associates. He represented a diverse mix of businesses, NGOs and elected officials, on issues ranging from climate change and water policy, to renewable energy, healthcare, technology, telecommunications and transportation.
Carpenter served as Chief of Staff for Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, Jr., from 2007 to 2011, acting as senior advisor on all policy, government, state budget, political and operational issues, and overseeing state agency executive directors and senior staff. He was a key liaison to Colorado’s Congressional Delegation and staff, the National Governors Association and diverse stakeholders, including business and myriad community organizations throughout the state.
In 2005 and 2006, he was State Director for then Colorado Senator Ken Salazar. In 2004, Carpenter was campaign manager for Senator Salazar’s successful U.S. Senate race. That year Salazar was the only Democrat to win an open seat in a so-called “Red State” and became one of only two newly elected Democrats in the U.S. Senate.
For five years, Carpenter was Director of Public Affairs for National Jewish Medical and Research Center (now National Jewish Health), managing public, media and government relations for the nation’s number one respiratory hospital and one of the world’s most respected medical research institutions. Carpenter also served as Director of Communications and Press Secretary, and then Chief of Staff for Colorado Governor Roy Romer.
Interspersed with his government and political service, Carpenter worked for consulting firms in both Washington, DC and Denver, representing a variety of private and non-profit sector clients on corporate communications, and public, government and media relations projects and activities.
In 2013, Carpenter was appointed by Gov. John Hickenlooper to serve as a member of the Colorado Supreme Court Nominating Commission. He also is a member of the board of directors of Colorado Bright by Three, and has been active in the non-profit community, including with the Mile High United Way, Denver Academy, National Jewish Health, and the Colorado Tobacco Education and Prevention Alliance.
A Colorado native, Carpenter attended Georgetown University before receiving his undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is married to Nancy Rhyme, deputy executive director of the National Conference of State Legislatures. They have two children, Emma a graduate student, and Nicholas, a college senior.