Who am I?
James H. Kimber grew up in Southern California. After graduating high school he enlisted in the United States Navy entering Basic Training at the former San Diego Recruit Training Command. Mr. Kimber's father and grandfather were both Navy doctors during World War II. Following in the family tradition of Navy Medicine, Mr. Kimber began his medical career at the Naval School of Health Sciences in San Diego, California as a Hospital Corpsman.
Mr. Kimber was stationed in Norfolk, Virginia where he served tours onboard the aircraft carrier USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER (CVN 69) and USS GUADALCANAL (LPH 7) where he earned both his Aviation Warfare Specialist and Surface Warfare Specialist designations. Following his two sea tours and multiple deployments, Mr. Kimber returned to San Diego and attended Independent Duty Corpsman School at the Naval School of Health Sciences. Upon graduation, Mr. Kimber was assigned as the Senior Medical Representative on the Guided Missile Frigate USS REID (FFG 30). The REID had a crew of over 200 and Kimber was the ship's only medical representative deploying three times to the Western Pacific. During his first deployment, Mr. Kimber saved the life of a critically ill sailor earning him a Meritorious Service Award from the San Diego Chamber of Commerce and the Navy Commendation Medal awarded by Vice Admiral Robinson. Mr. Kimber’s next assignment was at Camp Pendleton as the Senior Medical Instructor teaching "Medical Management of Chemical and Biological Casualties". During his tour at Camp Pendleton Mr. Kimber earned his Mater Training Specialist designation. Mr. Kimber served his final tour of duty as the Senior Medical Representative on the Guided Missile Destroyer USS ELLIOT (DD 967) with a crew of more than 450 men and women where he deployed three times. Mr. Kimber's final deployment came in October of 2001 following the attacks of September 11. The USS ELLIOT was deployed to the Arabian Gulf in support of the Global War on Terrorism where they intercepted multiple vessels transporting terrorists. Mr. Kimber retired as a Senior Chief Hospital Corpsman receiving more than a dozen decorations and personal awards for his service. During his career he earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree from George Washington University.
After 20 years of service, Mr. Kimber retired from the U.S. Navy and entered the Physician Assistant Program at Stanford University School of Medicine. Upon graduation and National Board Certification, Mr. Kimber began a residency program in neurosurgery earning medical staff privileges at six trauma centers throughout the San Diego County. Upon completion of his neurosurgical residency, Mr. Kimber joined the Southern California Institute of Neurological Surgery in Escondido, California where he practices today. Mr. Kimber currently is on medical staff at Palomar Medical Center, Pomerado Hospital, Tri-City Medical Center and Sharp Memorial Hospital.
Mr. Kimber is an active member of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, California Academy of Physician Assistants, American Association of Neurological Surgeons, Route 78 Rotary Club, Veterans of Foreign Wars and The American Legion.
Why am I running?
Like many in this country, I see the inaction of Congress or unwillingness to move forward and work together on issues the majority of the country has clearly expressed support for.
- Immigration Reform is the right thing to do and Congress said one year ago they would make it a priority. Now Congress says they can’t move forward this year because they don’t trust the administration. Congress always has a reason for not trying to work on a major problem affecting this country but rarely come up with an answer. Studies after study continue to demonstrate the positive effect immigrants of this country have on the economy. The Congressional Budget Office reported how passing Immigration Reform would benefit the economy. Countless economists including Robert Reich have said few issues will help more to recover this economy than passing Immigration Reform.
- Healthcare Reform. Congress passed the Affordable Care Act more than 3 years ago and the recent implementation did not get off to a good start. But we can’t go back to the way it was and yet some members of Congress still talk about how they need to “repeal and defund” the Affordable Care Act. As a healthcare provider with 30 years’ experience, I saw a surge in new patients beginning in January and see the benefits from people who have been suffering with pre-existing conditions who now can finally get insurance. Members of Congress need to work together to move forward with Healthcare Reform instead of trying to going back.
-We have been involved in two wars for more than a decade and have asked so much of our military force. And despite multiple deployments, our military members have always responded. Yet when they need help such as getting a medical claim processed, often they face a backlog of more than nine months. More of our military members have died from suicide than from combat. Veteran homelessness is on the rise as is violence against women in the military. Yet there is very little attention to these growing problems. Our military and veterans need our support.
For years I have listened to talk about these and many other issues but have seen little action. I've listened to members of Congress when they say they speak for the millions or represent the people of their district when in reality many speak for only a minority if any people at all. I've seen people ask their Representative questions only to be brushed away. One person asked about the current healthcare law and the only response they got was that it needed to be repealed. It's time we held members of Congress accountable and if they don't want to be accountable then it's time to elect someone who will work for the people.
Pass Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Members of Congress refuse to even have a discussion until we have "complete border security" yet this is an unattainable and undefinable goal that makes it very convenient for those who don't even want a serious discussion. This is not a "partisan" issue but a HUMAN issue. However, some members of Congress are unwilling to discuss ideas for Immigration Reform if it didn't come from their party. There are millions of undocumented immigrants who were brought here as children yet have been educated in our schools and every much a part of our communities but denied the right to become citizens. We hear members talk about being "Fiscally Responsible" but I say it is fiscally ‘irresponsible’ to hold up Immigration Reform and this is a key issue I will relentlessly pursue. I plan to pass Immigration Reform by working with others in Congress instead of insisting the only solution is one that comes from one party or group.
A single payer system or Medicare for everyone. There has been so much talk about this country heading toward "socialized medicine" with the passage of the ACA yet most don't even realize what that means. But as someone with 30 years of healthcare experience, I do. Some of my patients with Medicare complain about this country going to a socialized healthcare system without even realizing they are in a government healthcare plan. I served 20 years in the Navy and by definition, that was a "socialized" healthcare system, and yet those who had it agree it is a great healthcare. As a military retiree I have the same healthcare benefits and couldn't be happier and my patients who have Medicare would never give up their insurance. Healthcare costs are out of control and there is no sign of slowing unless we continue to reform healthcare. If Congress really cared about being fiscally responsible they would support a single payer system. I plan to achieve this by talking to people as someone with extensive experience in healthcare which only a small percentage of Representatives have.
I want to insure our Veterans receive the support they deserve after having sacrificed so much for this country. Cutting military retiree benefits is not the most effective way to reduce the deficit. Instead we should be investing more into putting our veterans back to work with the specialized training they have received. Too many veterans have skills but cannot get a job because the military training is not recognized like a degree from a traditional university. We have to prepare for a generation of veterans that are going to increasingly need mental health care and for those with physical injuries, we need to make sure they are taken care of as well. We have to address the continuing rise of violence against women in the military. And homelessness is another issue on the rise within our veterans community.
My DFA Values
My DFA Values from service to my country and service to others. As the son of a physician and grandson of a physician I grew up in an environment where people cared for others. My father actually made house calls and as a young man I would go along with my father when he made house calls and grew up with that kind of compassion. Over the past three decades working as a healthcare professional I can say “serving people” has definitely been my calling.
I also believe in quality education and the availability of education for those who are trying to pursue it. After graduating from a Physician Assistant Program, I was amazed to realize there wasn’t a Physician Assistant Program in San Diego. With healthcare changing the way it has, there is an ever increasing need for mid-level practitioners. San Diego is the eighth largest city in the U.S. and with five universities, a medical school and four nursing programs it really begs the question why there isn’t a Physician Assistant Program. I have been working with a local university and last November met with the Accreditation Commission for Physician Assistants and within two years the first San Diego County Physician Assistant Program will have its inaugural class. There are more innovative ways to bring education to people who aren’t getting the help they need such as Kahn Academy and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. We need to invest more into education and the ability to bring it to our children through broadband access to rural areas throughout the U.S.
I come from a legacy of military service, my father and grandfather were both Navy doctors in World War II, I served 20 years to my country in order to preserve and continue our way of life. Having served and traveled all over the world and experiencing different cultures, I understand the importance of partnerships with other countries and support diplomacy over unnecessary wars that cost our country so much in economically as well as the lives sacrificed and families forever disrupted. While I support a strong defense, I don’t believe in doing that at the cost producing military equipment that is redundant, outdated, in excess or just flat out not requested by the military. We are building tanks that are being stored in the desert when our military commanders aren’t even asking for them. We can’t just continue to produce this type of equipment because it keeps a job. Why can’t we retool a factory for equipment to help this country’s infrastructure that is so badly in need of repair, or convert the factory to one that helps produce renewable energy such as solar?
My Campaign is People Powered!
We started a grassroots effort over 18 months ago and with a district larger than the state of Connecticut it has been quite the journey. One community we have been working closely with is the Agriculture Industry. There are more than 80 wineries in the district and although they are spread out over a massive area, the values are shared amongst the growers. The stories we have learned while traveling around are amazing. Many of the wineries are new and were restricted in their ability to operate their business. We took a look at the county ordinance and managed to get a meeting with the County Supervisor to discuss. The County Supervisor was very open to our suggestions to amend the existing ordinance and we are currently moving ahead with that. It was very easy to bring people together who are of different beliefs, different backgrounds and different politics but all for the same common cause which was to correct legislation that was inhibiting their ability to do business. As a group we were able to discuss this and agree on a final solution. There wasn’t a single objection because somebody was of a different party. Now having done this I can call these people my friends and more and more I find people throughout the district that just want solutions to problems. They are tired of people who won’t work together and claim they represent the people of their district.
As an area that is heavily dependent upon agriculture, Immigration Reform is an issue that overwhelming receives support across party lines. While some agree it’s the right thing to do, others believe in passing reform from an economics standpoint, the vast majority agree it is time to do something for people they have depended upon in their businesses for so long.
My campaign continues to gain attention and through that we are rapidly growing. There are five universities in San Diego County and we are actively engaging the youth who are showing they want to be more involved in policy that is going to affect them in years to come. Too many have dismissed the youth but I find more and more who want to be involved and are willing to do the work involved in such a massive district and with serious issues. We are getting people from all backgrounds and from both parties primarily because people are frustrated with the lack of action by Congress and they are looking for someone who will work for them.