About

J. McKinley Brown, EdD, M.Ed, BCA

Hi! I’m Jim Brown and I live in Asheville, North Carolina. The Blue Ridge mountains inspire me and keep me grounded in this amazingly diverse place. I am an Instructional Designer, Educator, and Writer with over 30 years of experience in developing complex and engaging learning materials for educational and nonprofit organizations. My life purpose is to use my creativity and love and joy for knowledge and learning to inspire others to reach their full potential. I am a lifelong learner who seeks out opportunities to help others in the most efficient and effective way possible.

With a Doctorate of Education from the University of South Carolina, a Master of Education in Theatre Education from UNC-Greensboro, a Master of Education in Reading from Sam Houston State University, and a Bachelor of Creative Arts from UNC-Charlotte, I view instructional design within a practical, technical, linguistic, and aesthetic framework. I am happiest when I get to design instructional experiences that achieve the intended goals.

Originally I wanted to be a professional actor, director, theatrical designer, and playwright but fell in love with teaching children’s theatre. For 10 years I was an elementary drama teacher and used literature, science, social studies, and the arts to engage young people’s minds and imaginations. From there, I moved into higher education where I taught future teachers and career educators instructional design, children’s literature, and educational theory.

While I enjoyed being an educator, what I most enjoyed was the design aspect of the job, and not the day-to-day teaching and advising part of my career. I am a maker. I now know that about myself. A friend recently asked me this simple question, “How do you show love and care for others in your life?” I replied, “I make things! It gives me so much joy to make something for someone and then stand back and watch them enjoy it.” She said to me, “Well, you are far too creative and interested in too many things to continue doing what you’re doing.” She was right. So, in 2020, I decided to pivot into a full career as an instructional designer.

The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs was right. While I loved teaching, I realized that I was my most fulfilled self when I was working behind the scenes. I really do believe in the evolutionary process of inventing and reinventing the self. Maxine Green, the great educational philosopher from Columbia University said something to the effect that educators “are always on their way to becoming a teacher.” If you read my bio, you’ll see that I have always been an instructional designer on my unique way to becoming an instructional designer.

So, if you’ve made it this far, thank you! Please check out my bio and resume. I am excited to hear from you and find out how I can help your business or organization go to the next virtual learning level.