James Adrian (Jim) Farley, a longtime Claremore CPA, passed away June 30, 2017. A memorial service in celebration of his life will be 10 a.m. at the First Baptist Church, Claremore, on Friday, July 7, 2017 with Brother Sam Nichols officiating.
The son of Leslie R. and Lucinda Crew Farley, Jim was born August 23, 1932 at home on 10th street in Claremore, where he spent the greater part of his life. He attended Claremore High School graduating with the class of 1950 and played on the first legion baseball team in Rogers County. Jim was Vice President of his Senior Class, a member of the Band and the first to become a band All-Stater. He was active in sports, lettering in Football and Baseball. Jim was awarded a football scholarship to NEO but chose instead to attend the University of Oklahoma, graduating in 1954 with a degree in accounting. He was a member of the Oklahoma University Band serving as Band Vice President and Officer in Charge of the Air Force ROTC Band. Jim played Freshman Varsity Football and his claim to fame was tackling Billy Vessels in a practice. He liked to tell that he learned to play bridge in college and made his spending money from tournaments and continued to enjoy the game throughout his life. Jim did graduate work at the University of Tulsa.
As a member of the Air Force ROTC Jim entered the Air Force as a Second Lieutenant achieving the status of pilot with the Strategic Air Command refueling squadron and was honorably discharged in 1957. He married Barbara Louise Hansford on December 10, 1956 and he liked to celebrate the anniversary of their first date, February 14, 1950. "James A" or "Farley" as Barbara fondly referred to him, returned closer to home residing in Tulsa after his military service. Their son Eric was born 11 months after he and Barbara were married and just after James was discharged. Jim enjoyed working at the First National Bank of Tulsa, IBM and Phillips Oil Company. During this time he earned his CPA passing on the day his daughter Adrienne was born, in 1959, and soon returned to Claremore to open the first Certified Public Accounting practice in Rogers County and later with a partner the first Certified Public Accounting practice in Mayes County. Adrienne would later follow in his footsteps and become a Certified Public Accountant passing on her birthday; he proudly presented her with her CPA certificate at the awards ceremony. They were blessed with another very special daughter Suzanne, completing the Farley family two years later in 1961.
Jim liked to say he "retired" after selling his first accounting practice but as a real estate broker he spent his time putting together investment groups, buying and selling land and was realtor-owner with his friend and partner Albert Woods in WoodView Realty, Jay, OK. He served as the CFO and the Assistant Administrator for 4 years at the Claremore hospital when it was city owned. Jim then went back to his roots and opened another accounting practice; later merging with Waters, Flanagan, Siefried, Hargrove and Farley; then partnering with his good friend and fellow CPA Mary Menkel in Farley and Menkel, CPA's until his retirement in 2002.
Jim was active in his profession receiving the Oklahoma Society of Certified Public Accountant's Public Service Award and was a Charter Member and Past President of the Northeastern Oklahoma chapter of OSCPAs. He served on the Legislative Committee, a Special Advisory Committee on Legislation and held positions on the Board of Directors for the OSCPA's. Jim served as accounting and tax advisor for the Northeastern Oklahoma Board of Realtors.
For many years he was active in the Rogers County Republican Party serving as County Chairman and Committeeman. Jim was Campaign Treasurer for former Claremore resident Bob Lavender when he sought the Oklahoma Supreme Court post and was proud to be a part of Henry Bellmon's campaign, the First Oklahoma Republican Governor.
After his return to Claremore in 1964 Jim was actively involved in the community, giving generously of his time providing practical knowledge and guidance for civic welfare, charitable organizations and his profession. In service to the Claremore Chamber of Commerce where he was called on for accounting help he served on the Budget Committee, held the Treasurer Director position, was Building Committee Chairman, Special Projects Chairman and was a member of the Community Development, Local Government Liaison, Reaccreditation and Finance Committees. He continued donating many hours in service to Claremore where he was a member and leader of a committee to assess the acquisition of a computer system for the City of Claremore and contributing his accounting services to Claremore, Inc. and Rogers County Homebuilders. Jim was an original Director of the Claremore Industrial Authority, later CIEDA, and served as chairman. His other civic endeavors involved service on many boards including Share the Spirit, Crime Stoppers and Trustee for the Rogers County Public Health Facilities Authority Trust. Jim was a Member of Rotary, Claremore Elks Lodge, Rogers County Historical Society and a Charter member of the Claremore Civic Band. He was recognized as the 1987 Claremore Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year.
Jim, giving most of the credit to his wife Barbara and three other couples, helped found the Rogers County Council for Retarded Children in 1969, Claremore's first Resale/Thrift Shop and the Rogers County Training Center; the fruits of their labor live on today in our community.
An avid OU fan and supporter, he was a life member of the University of Oklahoma Alumni Association and member of the OU Alumni Band, "The Pride". BOOMER SOONER!!!
Jim and Barbara spent their married years in Claremore raising their children, working, volunteering and enjoying many close friends. They enjoyed a special group of seven couples, "The Bridge Club", their cabin at the Claremore Outing Club on Spavinaw Creek, a special place that brought them much joy and so many other special people that made their life complete. Having a grandson, Mitchell, was one of the greatest gifts life gave them. Jim enjoyed spending time with him in their younger years and many long phone calls discussing and debating life when Mitchell left home.
His primary focus in life was his family, with his last thoughts reminding us of what was important. Most of all Jim's later life was an inspiration of optimism, resilience, and independence. Jim was a Christian with his faith having supported him all of his life and particularly through his later years.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents, his wife and a daughter Barbara Suzanne Farley. He is survived by his children James "Eric" Farley, wife Andra and Adrienne Ann Farley West, husband Marc all of Claremore and grandson Mitchell Dane West of Oklahoma City.
Memorial contributions may be made to Home of Hope, P.O. Box 903, Vinita, OK 74301 or First Baptist Church, 107 E. Will Rogers Blvd., Claremore, OK 74017. www.mmsfuneralhomes.com
Published on July 3, 2017