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John Firth John Firth

John Firth, writer

Whitehorse, YT, CANADA

A range of knowledge from organizing sport events, wilderness racing, how charities work, the power of desiring literacy to self-publishing



Raised in Dawson City, where the Klondike Gold Rush was my back yard, and Whitehorse in the Yukon I have worked as an mining expediter, prospector, journalist, financial planner and theater owner.
I have been chair of Yukon Quest International ( 1 1000-mile professional winter wilderness race between Fairbanks, Alaska, and Whitehorse, Yukon), chair of Yukon Foundation (Yukon's largest charitable foundation which provides funding to arts and sports organizations and scholarships for students), president of the Yukon River Marathon Paddling Association (which organizes a professional 460-mile international paddling race on the Yukon River) and public relations director for the FISA World Cup Cross-country Ski Championships.
I've also published four books dealing with wilderness racing, northern history, combatting Polio in the 1950s and today and literacy. Two of my books are self-published and I have been involved in every aspect of the publishing process. Have also competed in extreme wilderness competitions.

I currently sit on the Board of Management for the Canada Revenue Agency.

My website is

Industry Expertise (3)

Writing and Editing

Events Services


Areas of Expertise (2)

The Desire for Literacy and the Unknown

How to Manage Volunteers

Accomplishments (2)

Paul Harris Fellowship from Rotary International (personal)


For work, as a non-member of Rotary International, in fund raising and awareness promotion for Polio Plus in the world-wide fight against polio (self-published Better Than A Cure: One Man's Journey to free the World of Polio).

Yukon Commissioners Award for Public Service, 1998 (personal)


For work on the preservation of northern history and culture and fostering international relationships between the United States and Canada as chair of Yukon Quest International

Education (1)

university of British Columbia: Bachelor of Fine Arts, Creative Writing 1976

Canadian Centre for Studies in publishing, Book Editing, Simon Fraser University, August 2000 Rotman School of Management, Sauder School of Business, Governance Essentials for Directors of Not-For-Profit Organizations, November, 2010

Affiliations (1)

  • Writers Union of Canada

Event Appearances (5)

Master of Ceremonies

Yukon Foundation Annual General Meeting  Whitehorse, Yukon


Introduction of award recipient

Commissioner's Awards  Whitehorse, Yukon


keynote speaker

One Mush book readings and talks  Whitehorse, Yukon/Toronto, Ontario/Ocho Rios, Jamaica


keynote speaker

Rivertime book readings and talks  Whitehorse,Yukon/Vancouver, B.C./Calgary, Alberta/Edmonton, Alberta, Hay River, N.W.T


keynote speaker

Rotary International meeting, talk on charitable giving  Whitehorse, Yukon


Sample Talks (1)

the desire for literacy and the unknown

Using the book, One Mush: Jamaica's Dogsled Team, the talk will focus around how an individual's desire to learn how to read, challenge stereotypes, change his place at the bottom of society and tempt fate took him to places he could scarcely imagine and some he couldn't even conceive of.



  • Keynote
  • Panelist
  • Workshop Leader


100 to 1000 *Will consider certain engagements for no fee