Jim Stump has been involved in sports ministry for the past 5+ decades after graduating from Wheaton College (Illinois) in 1966. He began his career as the European Director of Athletes in Action, setting up their program with the European Olympic Committees for two years. Upon his return to America, he was invited by two Stanford football players to come to Palo Alto to help their teammates and them grow their faith. As a direct result, he became the campus director of Campus Crusade for Christ (Cru) at Stanford University, and served in that capacity from 1970 – 1974, when he left Cru/AIA to focus his attention on the one-on-one mentoring of athletes by founding Sports Challenge. He served in the role of spiritual life coach under 13 consecutive head coaches and six athletic directors, and he also spent time as the chaplain to the San Francisco 49ers and the San Francisco Giants. Jim is often asked to speak to a variety of audiences including college and professional sports teams, churches, business professionals, Christian colleges and high schools, seminaries, and retreats.
After 45 years of meeting with 30 – 35 men each week one-on-one on an ongoing basis, mentoring them through those crucial years, Jim moved Sports Challenge to the Dallas, Texas area in January of 2015 to be closer to his children and grandchildren. There, Jim is continuing his exciting, transformational ministry on the campus of Southern Methodist University (SMU) where he is mentoring coaches and athletes. Jim is also giving his time to see the unique Sports Challenge model expanded to key college campuses around the United States.