John has 53 years of professional experience and a lifelong passion in matters relating to the Antarctic. His career since leaving university in 1966 has been devoted to the frozen continent and he has been working as a historian/guide in Antarctica for the past 12 years.
John joined the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) in 1966 as a scientist and wintered at Faraday (now Vernadsky) Station on the Antarctic Peninsula in 1967 and 1968 (base commander in 1968), where he studied the upper layers of the Earth’s atmosphere (the ionosphere). He then worked for BAS in a variety of roles: research scientist in the field of ionosphere/magnetosphere physics, research leader, science manager, head of a science division and finally (until retirement in early 2006), as deputy director.
John’s experience encompasses field work, science research, science leadership, logistics operations and crisis management, policy making and management at senior level, health & safety policy, international governance of the Antarctic and its political history.
John is a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society, of the Royal Geographical Society and a member of the American Geophysical Union. He is also an individual member of the Parliamentary and Scientific Committee of the British Houses of Parliament.
John is very proud to be a recipient of the Polar Medal in 1976, awarded by Her Majesty the Queen, and clasp to the Polar Medal in 1995. In 2004 he was honoured by the award of an OBE for services to science.