Ron James is a native Californian raised in San Diego. He is a nationally recognized pioneer in online, broadcast and print journalism. Throughout his career Ron earned dozens of national and local journalism awards including one of the first Webbies and the ultimate Online Journalism Association’s first place award for breaking news in 2004 and as a finalist in 2008. . For the last decade he has focused on his journalism efforts on his passion for great food, wine and travel.
After serving in the U.S Navy for four years during Vietnam he attended Shasta College in Redding, Ca where he graduated with honors and served as Student Body President and Vice President. He earned his BA degree in communications at Cal State University at Fullerton.
Along with his four brothers, Rich, Greg, Mike and Pat, Ron founded the iconic James Gang graphics company and action sportswear retail chain in Ocean Beach where it is still in operation today. In 1989, Ron attended an honors digital multimedia course at San Diego City College and began creating multimedia CDROMs out of his San Diego beach bungalow. He wrote about the fledgling multimedia industry for local and national publications.
Ron and his soon to be wife Mary wrote The Multimedia Casebook published by Van Nostrand Reinhold, that was used as a textbook at universities around the world. It included the first cross-platform CD ROM hypertext version of a book that included video and audio that was programmed and produced by Ron.
In 1994 he worked with San Diego Magazine’s publisher Jim Fitzpatrick to found San Diego Magazine’s online site San Diego Online. The site plowed new ground by offering content from nearly two dozen online columnist who were essentially the nets first bloggers. It won a Webbie in 1996.
At Time Warner he was the first online editor for its Road Runner service. Road Runner’s innovative Discover San Diego website, was one of the first showcases for video. He produced one of the first long-form Webcasts using professional talent exclusively for the Web with 22 hours of live programming at Street Scene. He produced some of the first TV series for both broadcast and the web.
As Director of Broadband for The Blue Torch he pioneered streaming video programming including live week-long sports Webcasts on both coasts. He led a small team to Fiji for a championship surfing event streaming live video on a platform three miles offshore of Fiji using a gas generator, and satellite dish.
For nine years he led the pioneering editorial efforts of The San Diego Union-Tribune’s website, SignOnSanDiego.com which has won many local and national honors for excellence and innovation.
He founded and developed the San Diego News Network, a unprecedented network of local media companies positioned to be a major news contender.
He was the founding GM and Editor in Chief for the award-winning San Diego Uptown News.
Ron published the popular digital online magazine, Wine & Dine San Diego which evolved into the next evolution of magazines, Wine Dine & Travel Magazine an international print and digital magazine.
Today Ron is the CEO of Wine Country Interactive, a digital media company with publishers Wine Dine & Travel Magazine. Ron and his wife Mary also produce the restaurant guide for San Diego for FODOR’S Travel Guide. He lives in San Diego with his wife Mary and his cat Shadow and travels the globe frequently. When he’s not traveling or writing Ron paints abstracts which hang in homes around the world. His work has appeared in The Living Artists Gallery in Balboa Park, Art Walk and has sold in art galleries in the Southern California region.