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We honor the life of Jim Offord who died recently. Quoting from his memorial service on November 9 at Colesville United Methodist Church “After a distinguished career in federal government, retiree/volunteer Offord went on to make significant contributions to bettering human relations within Montgomery County. Specifically, Mr. Offord’s contributions to fair and affordable housing, civil rights and political/civic activism, have served as a positive impact upon bridging the social, political and economic differences of diverse groups of people with Montgomery County.

Over the years, Mr. Offord has diligently served as an active member and officer of these non-profit organizations: Board of Directors – Tamarack Triangle Civic Association; Treasurer and Board Member – Great Hope Homes, Inc.; Board of Directors – Suburban Maryland Fair Housing, Inc.; Editorial Advisory Committee – Montgomery Times; Member of Congressman Albert Wynn’s Scholarship Committee – Colleges and Military academies; President and Board Member – Montgomery Habitat for Humanity, Inc.; Housing Chairperson and member of the Montgomery County branch of NAACP, and elected representative on the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee, Legislative District 14. As the former Executive Director of Suburban Maryland Fair Housing and past Board Director of the MD chapter of the SCLC, it was evident that Mr. Offord’s strong commitment to bettering human relations was paramount.”

“James C. Offord’s words, deed and actions, on behalf of human relations principles and practices, are in the best tenets of the goals, hope and aspirations of ALL groups of people in our County. Jim Offord truly walked as a “drum major for justice” here within Montgomery County, in the spirit and substance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”

It was my privilege to meet Jim, but briefly. His presence was, to me, filled with the joy that only a person living with the wholehearted joy that comes from giving can convey. What he gave Habitat for Humanity was not only a commitment for advocacy for affordable housing and social justice, but a strong example to follow.