It all started when Jim Dole was eight years old. While camping in his backyard, Jim would wake up periodically and notice the stars had moved in the sky. Seeing this piqued Jim’s interest, and his parents gave him a small telescope. A small telescope given to a little boy triggered a passion in him, and the rest is history!

After high school, Jim served five years in the Air Force as a Communication Specialist. He worked his way up from an associates degree in digital equipment technology to two masters degrees in computer information systems and astronomy.

Jim’s passion for education and his enthusiasm for the science of astronomy has opened doors to teach college-level astronomy part-time. He welcomes opportunities to visit elementary schools and organizations to share his passion and generate interest in others. No matter what else may be going on, if you ask Jim a question about a planet his eyes light up and he explains why “it’s so cool.”

Today, Jim has sophisticated equipment with an observatory dome in his backyard. He is a recognized astrophotographer and the Director of the Doug Firebaugh Observatory in Freeport, IL.

When Jim isn’t teaching and studying the sky, you can find him at Metform, where he is the on site IT Specialist.

Check out some of Jim’s out of this world photography!