James "Jimmy" DeBell is a retired American football official in the National Football League (NFL). He wore uniform number 58. DeBell made his debut in the NFL as a side judge on the crew of Alberto Riveron in 2009. He started his career officiating high school football in upstate New York and then eventually moved on to college football. His first NFL game that he officiated was in Tampa Bay, Florida where the Dallas Cowboys played against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He officiated 17 games his first NFL football season.
DeBell officiated in the Conference USA and the Big East before joining the NFL. He also refereed in Ivy League and Atlantic 10 as well as the Arena Football League and NFL Europe. He officiated the Emerald Bowl in December 2004. His first NFL playoff appearance was in the 2010-2011 NFC Divisional round between the Chicago Bears and the Seattle Seahawks. In 2011 he was awarded the Outstanding Football Official Award (Rochester) by the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame (NFF). Outside of the NFL, DeBell is a Physical Education teacher at Dansville High School where he also coaches golf and is the assistant women's basketball coach. Jimmy graduated from Greece, Arcadia high school in 1980 and was involved in all sports including football, baseball, and basketball. Ranging around 6 foot 1 and 200 pounds, he has the physique of an athlete.
He currently resides in Conesus, New York with his wife, Luane, and their children, Nikole and Tyger. He is the son of James DeBell, who was well known throughout NYS athletics, and Joyce Debell. He has two sisters, Debbie and Sandy, and a brother, Joe.
For 2014, DeBell was on the officiating crew headed by referee Bill Vinovich.
On May 29, 2015, it was announced that DeBell will not return to the field for the 2015 NFL season.