James Croshaw was born July of 1933 in the small rural town of Angels Camp, California. After high school Jim moved to San Francisco to pursue life in the big city as an artist. In San Francisco he felt comfortable and accepted being a gay young man. He immediately fell in love with performing on stage and became a professional dancer and costume designer. In the 1950s Jim co-founded the San Francisco Contemporary Dancers where his work in dance and design was groundbreaking and nationally acclaimed. A decade later, he retired from the dance group to persue a career in Cosmetology. At this time he met his life partner, Marty. Jim continued to progress his career as a Stylist and once again became well known for being extraordinary in his field. In the late 1970’s Jim and his partner Marty opened their own salon, Haircuts Etc, in Los Altos California. They had dozens of employees and multiple celebrity clients over their 30 years of success. They retired together in 2011. The two were together for over 50 years, and finally married in December of 2015.
For fun Jim dressed in drag wearing intricate and elaborate homemade custom designs. He started this at a time when men were often arrested for wearing woman’s clothing but Jim persevered. Jim was very active in the community and the gay rights movement in The Bay Area. He played a large part in turning San Francisco into a safe haven for gays, and helped pave the way for a new generation of LGBT youth to find a place where they can be themselves. His outgoing and magnetic personality made him many friends throughout The Bay Area. However, during the 1980s HIV/AIDS Crisis, Jim discovered he was HIV Positive. He lost many friends to the tragic illness, but he was determined to not let it beat him.
Sadly, in March of 2018, Jim passed away at the age of 84. He never let HIV stop him and was a true inspiration to all. This fundraiser is in his name, in memory of his life, his unending creativity and everything he did for his community. Donations will benefit the Southern New Hampshire HIV Task Force.