Jim Plowman works hard to do right by the citizens of Loudoun County.
He strives to emulate his parents—good people who taught the importance of a strong work ethic—and expects his children to do the same.
His father, James Plowman, Sr. served as the navigator on a Navy A-6 Intruder light bomber based on the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk. His plane was shot down during a mission over North Vietnam. The story of his recovery was highlighted in a Washington Post article in June 2006.
Five months later, Jim Plowman, Jr. was born.
As a single parent, Mrs. Plowman gave him the same instinct for survival she found in herself. “There really are no words to describe her strength,” Jim admits, “she’s the most extraordinary person I’ve ever known.”
Jim grew up in the Northern Virginia area, attending Bishop O’Connell High School in Arlington where he honed his work ethic and discovered his love of learning, and a hunger to do so much more. He would go on to study Economics at Virginia Tech, another decision that proved both useful and relevant to his job as chief prosecutor.
After graduation Jim worked on finance and budgets for a Navy defense contractor. He would later take a job in Alexandria as a Law Clerk for a group of attorneys representing a pension fund. At night he attended the National Law Center at George Washington University. It was busy and stressful, but very, very exciting.
“Putting myself through law school with a full-time job, well, it was exceedingly difficult. I can’t say I would enjoy doing it again, but it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. It organized me, made me sure of what I wanted, and most importantly, that’s when I met my wife, Angie.”
After finishing law school and passing the bar exam, Jim went to work as a Fairfax County Prosecutor (Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney). There, he honed his trial skills in one of the fasted paced offices in Virginia. He was quickly given significant responsibilities, prosecuting dozens of jury trials and over one thousand bench trials in his time there.
“Law school teaches you the principals. It prepares you. But criminal prosecution—actually standing in a courtroom, in front of a judge or jury and representing the community—well that’s something else entirely. It’s difficult to appreciate unless you’ve actually spent time as a prosecutor the great weight of responsibility and importance the job carries.”
The job of a prosecutor is mentally and physically draining. Prosecutors must occupy a seat in the proverbial front row, immersing themselves in the sordid details of crimes so horrible, so incredibly barbaric that many burn out and move on to other areas of practice. Jim remained stalwart, gaining strength from his commitment to faith, the support of his family, and his drive to protect his community.
Following his time as Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney in Fairfax, Jim went to work as a trial attorney for one of the world’s larges insurance companies. While there he successfully fought numerous cases of insurance fraud. But he continually felt the call to return to his true passion, to be a Virginia Prosecutor.
In 2003 Jim was recruited by several local leaders to serve as their candidate for Commonwealth’s Attorney. Jim knew Loudoun County was one of the softest counties on crime in the state. He saw that position as a challenge and he was eager to take it head on. It was a means and an opportunity through which he could make a positive difference in the legal system of Loudoun County. He became its Commonwealth’s Attorney, figured out what was broken in the office, and promptly set about fixing it.
Jim has spent the past 12 years prosecuting criminals, remaining an active member of his community and working every day to keep Loudoun families, including his own, safe from harm.
Jim Plowman Commonwealth's Attorney
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