James W. Parkinson (born 1949) is a California lawyer and an activist for reparations to be paid to Americans who were slave laborers for private Japanese companies during World War II.
Parkinson was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. He received his bachelor's degree in law from Brigham Young University in 1973.
Parkinson authored with Lee Benson Soldier Slaves: Abandoned by the White House, Courts and Congress and more recently was the producer of the film The Inheritance of War also about the Americans held prisoner of war by Japan and their quest for reparations.
Parkinson is also a 1976 graduate of the J. Reuben Clark Law School at Brigham Young University and is admitted to practice law in California.
From 2003-2004 Parkinson was the chairman of the Republican Trial Lawyers Caucus.
Ellis v R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company
For purposes of this litigation Parkinson was to counsel Robinson, Calcagnie, and Robinson and Casey, Gerry, Reed, and Schenk. Critical California case against Big Tobacco in coordination with the national Castano Group.
Harold Poole, et al. v. Nippon steel, et. al.
Counseled individual cases and class action cases against Japanese corporations that used captured American soldiers as slave laborers in World War II.
James is the owner of indioparky - A site whose main purpose is to inspire Literary Activism in young adults. His Book, Autodidactic: Self-Taught has sold over 20,000 copies and encourages self learning in reading, writing, and vocabulary.
The purpose of indioparky and Literacy for the 21st Century is to inspire high school and college students to take personal responsibility for their educations. Using my book, Autodidactic: Self-Taught, I share with the students — in an interactive classroom setting — the relationship between success and one’s vocabulary, reading habits and writing skills.
Why did I write Autodidactic: Self-Taught and why do I lecture all over the world on literacy and the importance of word mastery? Let me give a brief history…
In the summer of 2006 the book I co-authored with Lee Benson entitled Soldier Slaves, Abandoned by the White House, Courts and Congress, was published by the Naval Institute Press. As I began my efforts to publicize and promote my book, it became painfully obvious to me that we are facing a crisis in America…fewer and fewer people can or even want to read. I learned that there are over 30,000,000 adults in the United States who can neither read nor write! Over 70% of the prison population can’t read! And the problem is getting worse.
After giving it considerable thought, I concluded that I wanted to do something about the illiteracy/alliteracy problem so I wrote my book and embarked on a speaking tour. As of today’s date I have sold over 20,000 copies of Autodidactic:Self-Taught and spoken to more than 20,000 high school students in Utah, California, New Jersey, Mississippi, Indiana, and Tanzania, Africa.
I enjoy nothing more than speaking to students. Using skills I perfected as a trial lawyer for 38 years I engage the students in an interactive exchange on the importance of taking responsibility for their own educations emphasizing the importance of word mastery.
The reaction of the students and teachers to the book and program has been overwhelmingly positive! Because of the impact the program is having on the individual students I have decided to dedicate myself to giving my program — and a copy of Autodidactic: Self-Taught — to every student in America and across the world!
Desert Bar Association (Member, Board of Trustees, 1990, 2000-2001) and Riverside County Bar Association; The State Bar of California; American Association for Justice (Formerly, The Association of Trial Lawyers of America- Board of Governors, 1987-1989; American Board of Trial Advocates. (ABOTA)(Associate); Consumer Attorneys of California; Consumer Attorneys of Southern California; Co-Chair of the Republican Trial Lawyer Caucus Association of Trial Lawyers of America (2004 - 2005); Chairman of the Republican Trial Lawyer Caucus Association of Trial Lawyers of America (2003-2004.
United Way of the Desert; Community Advisory Board, El Dorado Bank; Community Advisory Board, Eisenhower Hospital; Indio Enconomic Development Committee; Boys Club of Coachella Valley; National Black Leadership Commission on Aids, Inc. Advisory Group. Chairman, Orrin G Hatch Distinguished Trial Lawyer Series, J Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University. Co-Chairman, East Africa Breast Cancer Project. Honorary Membership in 100 Black Men of Columbus, Mississippi.
National Jefferson Award for Public Service (2007)
California Trial Lawyers Association Presidential Award of Merit (1987)
Consumer Attorneys of California Award of Merit (1997)
Association of Trial Lawyers of American Citation of Excellence (Wiedemann Wysocki)(2003-2004)(2004-2005)
Association of Trial Lawyers of America Distinguished Service Award (2005)
J. Reuben Clark Law School Brigham Young University Honored Alumni of the Year Award for 2006
Naval Institute Press Author of the Year Award (2006)for book Soldier Slaves, Abandoned by the White House, Courts, and Congress sharing the honor with co-author Lee Benson
Federal Bar Association Defender of the Constitution Award for The Inland Empire (2008).