James Watson

Lead For Poughkeepsie
Advisor

Hometowns: Poughkeepsie, NY

James is a co-founder of Lead for Poughkeepsie (LFPK), a new city affiliate at Lead for America. His role at LFPK builds on nearly six years of experience supporting community development and civic renewal in his hometown of Poughkeepsie, New York.

 

In addition to his work with LFPK, James serves as a strategic initiatives consultant to the nonprofit architecture and design firm MASS Design Group, working closely with the firm’s Hudson Valley office located in downtown Poughkeepsie. In 2019, James also partnered with Poughkeepsie’s Mayor, Superintendent of Schools and community stakeholders to co-found the Poughkeepsie Children's Cabinet, a collective impact organization that convenes leaders across sectors to develop a citywide cradle-to-career agenda for children, youth and families.

 

Before returning to Poughkeepsie, James spent a decade helping some of the world's largest media brands launch new ventures on television and in print, including CBS, NBC and The New York Times. 

 

James was a member of the production team behind “60 Minutes Sports,” a spinoff of the legendary Sunday evening newsmagazine produced by CBS News. While at CBS News, he was involved in the production of nearly 20 stories for “60 Minutes Sports” and “60 Minutes.” 

 

Prior to joining CBS, James covered three Olympic Games for NBC. He is a two-time Emmy Award winner and four-time nominee.

 

James holds a B.A. from Boston College. He is also a graduate of the Columbia Publishing Course at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.