Senior Vice President, Communications
John Balzar joined the executive staff in 2007 after a 33-year career as a journalist, writer, and adventurer.
His opinion columns celebrating the human-animal bond, published nationally via the Times-Post News Service, earned him a Genesis Award. As a staff writer at The Los Angeles Times, he traveled widely and received some of journalism's highest honors.
He has written about gorillas in the war zone of Rwanda's Mountains of the Moon and elephants in Kenya, as well as sharks in Palau, grizzly bears and bowhead whales in Alaska, farm cows in the classroom, and the larger meaning of the human-animal bond.
His book "Yukon Alone" (Henry Holt 2000) was named on The Times' Best Books of the Year and was translated into seven languages. The writer Tim Cahill called it "…the best book on the Far North since Barry Lopez's 'Arctic Dreams.'"
In quest of stories about nature and its creatures, Balzar has sailed across the Pacific, worked as a boatman on the rivers of the Brooks Range Mountains of Alaska, hiked on the Serengeti, explored the undersea continental shelf in a two-person submersible, and bicycled the furious byways of car-crazy Los Angeles.
He is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps and served in Vietnam.
Journalists seeking interviews with HSUS experts, please see our directory of media contacts.