RAFFAN, JAMES – loves canoes and canoeing and is a longtime friend of the Canadian Canoe Museum in Peterborough, service for which he just received Canada’s Meritorious Service Medal from Governor General Julie Payette. But it is storytelling that is JR’s real passion, and he’s one of the best. Over the years he has written and edited 24 books on topics ranging from canoes to biography, with the common thread running through them the connections between people and place. He has also written for film and television as well as for radio, both words and music, to evoke the themes and stories of the people and places he has visited. He is a frequent public presenter, speaking about risk, adventure, environment, reconciliation, education and the simple joys of self-imposed suffering.