John is Professor Emeritus, Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Alberta. He has conducted over fifty years of fieldwork across Canada's Arctic Archipelago documenting the nature of environmental change spanning Ice Age to present. This research spans the history of ancient ice sheets and sea level change to permafrost and lake/ocean sediment cores that place modern change in a necessary, long-term perspective.
John is an advocate for the importance of northern science and increased public awareness of the precious heritage of the Canadian Arctic landscape. He became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2012 in recognition of his dedication to Arctic science, public outreach and education. He has supervised more than thirty graduate students in Arctic research and works closely with Gwitch’in and Inuvialuit students at Aurora College, Inuvik. He proposed Canada's northernmost National Park, Quttinirpaaq, Ellesmere Island.
In addition to his science, John has amassed even more cherished stories of discoveries and adventures while living in remote camps of two or three people—an unsung Canadian heritage!