Confession: In Grade 9, so many years ago, I was one of a three-student team that won the local school board’s regional Geopardy competition — a geography quiz game modeled after TV’s Jeopardy (in case that wasn’t obvious!). I mention this as it seems necessary to establish some nature of street cred as I introduce myself as the newest member of the Canadian Geographic team. (I now await the requisite taunts from my colleagues on my next trip to the water cooler. Funny that hadn’t come up in the interview....)
My principle responsibility is the editorial content of the brand’s flagship magazine, for which I’d like to think I’m at least somewhat more qualified (certainly in comparison to my straight geography qualifications). Most recently I was editorial director at the Canadian Wildlife Federation, where I oversaw the organization’s three publications: Canadian Wildlife, Biosphère and WILD (for kids) magazines. Prior to that I was the managing editor for more than a decade at Outdoor Canada magazine.
So, with those experiences, I’m certainly familiar with many of the key themes of the Canadian Geographic brand, namely the environment, conservation and wildlife. But I’ve also always had a keen interest in history, adventure, travel and social issues. And as you might imagine, I’ve encountered and written on those topics, too, even if it was from a natural bent.
That said, I’m excited — and honoured — to join the Canadian Geographic team to explore the great and diverse range of issues and stories that will make Canada better known to Canadians and the world. I’m eager, too, to contribute to the ongoing convergence of the magazine’s print brand with its various other media outlets, including online and many other digital forms.
One of the unique similarities between great magazines and great digital media has always been the importance of the audience — you. As our connected world evolves rapidly, we now have more and better ways to keep in contact. I’m keen to delve deep into these emerging technologies and mash them up. I hope you’ll continue to join us for the journey, particularly by sharing your thoughts, opinions, photos, videos, etc., etc., etc., in/on whatever medium you prefer. Bottom line: let us know what you want to talk about, see and read. We’ll take your lead.
Please don’t hesitate to start by commenting below — just go easy with the personal cracks at the expense of the new guy who was willing to admit to being a proud geography geek. Please.