John has spent more than 30 years in Africa, South, East and Southeast Asia, including 10 years as CIFOR’s Director of Communications, where his team increased citations of publications more than ten times, media citations from 75 to 1900 per year, built more than 35 websites, and grew all social media platforms by double or triple digits from 2009–2019. In 2013, John and his colleagues developed and launched the concept of the Global Landscapes Forum, today the world’s largest forum on integrated land use with a social media outreach of 310 million and media outreach of 340 million.
John spent more than 12 years as a foreign correspondent in radio, broadcast and print, and five years with TIME Magazine where he served as Hong Kong Bureau Chief. As a journalist, he won numerous international and national awards. He has BS in forestry and an MAg in Technical Communication, both from the University of Minnesota, an MA in Economic Geography from the London School of Economics, and an MS in journalism from Columbia University in New York.