James D. Newland has lived in or near La Mesa since he moved here from Northern California in 1985 to attend college. He and his wife and daughter returned to La Mesa in 2003 after a 10-year hiatus in neighboring Rolando. Jim is a graduate of San Diego State University, where he received his bachelor's degree in social sciences and a master's degree in public history in 1992. His academic, professional and volunteer work has provided him the opportunity to study the land-use history of Southern California and focus on the history of La Mesa and surrounding areas.
Jim is supervising historian and a manager for the California State Parks Department's Southern Service Center in San Diego. He has been professionally involved in cultural resources, land-use planning and historic preservation since 1991.
Jim has served on numerous state, regional and local professional and not-for-profit boards — including La Mesa's Centennial Steering Committee. In addition to his professional and volunteer work, Jim has been involved in many local and community history projects, including ones focusing on Rolando and the College Area.
Jim has authored numerous academic journal and popular history articles as well as hundreds of technical reports and planning documents. He has also written two books -- a history of the region's Cleveland National Forest (which he served as historian from 1993 to 1995) and a photographic history of La Mesa for the La Mesa Historical Society ("Images of America: La Mesa, 2010").
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