James A. Richards is an arts entrepreneur, author and commercial voiceover professional with a life-long interest in arts and entertainment.

Growing up, Jim followed the television industry reading every trade he could, and even spent two summers in California where he toured TV and film studios. He even began a personal library that initially focused on television, but has since grown to include a variety of subjects. It now numbers over 300 books, thousands of articles and dozens of special edition magazines all tied-together with a color-coded card catalog.

Jim attended the University of Wisconsin where he majored in Communications, with an emphasis on television and radio production & management, while also studying other forms of media, marketing and public relations.

In Pittsburgh, he worked for a variety of entities (primarily in the arts/entertainment field) including the Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation, Open Stage Theatre, Pittsburgh International Jewish-Israeli Film Festival and Pittsburgh Film Workers Association, among others. 

 


He was among the founding staff of the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, which operates downtown Pittsburgh’s business improvement district. Jim helped to establish many of their programs and services that continue today.

Jim also worked in retail marketing with entities as diverse as Horne’s Department Store, Mail Boxes Etc USA (now UPS Store) and Barnes & Noble Booksellers.

In 1999, he created the pioneering web site PGHevents, which became one of the first stand-alone web events calendars in the country. It was a founding project of his social enterprise, Managerie, and later became the web events calendar for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, southwestern Pennsylvania’s #1 newspaper. Jim revived PGHevents in 2015.

From 2000 to 2008, Jim ran Managerie, which provided key marketing, media and support services to the region’s arts/entertainment community. Embracing both the non-profit and commercial sphere, Managerie’s projects included PGHevents; the Pittsburgh A&E Book professional directory, the Pittsburgh Music Festival, Pittsburgh Applause trade newsletter and other valuable programs.

 

At left: Jim on the cover of Pittsburgh Magazine in 2002

Through his work at the center of Pittsburgh’s arts and entertainment community, Jim has met many celebrities including Robert Downey Jr., Jamie Lee Curtis and James Woods, among others. 

In 2007, Jim finally achieved a long dream and completed his first novel, Summer Club & The Creatures. He recently published a series of novels inspired by the legendary TV series “Faraway Hill”

Jim suffers from limiting conditions including spinal stenosis yet continues to write and manage projects like PGHevents and Pittsburgh Applause while launching an online television station called Channel Pittsburgh.