Jim was born in Liverpool, England in 1929. He was in the Royal Air Force from 1947-49. Jim spent some time as a trader in West Africa before coming to Canada in 1954. He did research in Labrador-Ungava and Ellesmere Island with scientific ventures from 1955 to 1960. Jim joined the Department of Northern Affairs and National Resources as a planner and research officer in 1960-until 1966, then taught community development at St. Paul University, Ottawa from 1966 to 1971. He taught at Coady International Institute from 1971-73. Since then he has been a freelance writer, consultant and independent researcher. Jim has worked 25 different jobs, ranging from university professor to grouse beater. Recent volunteer assignments in community development have taken him to Slovakia, Nain, Egypt and Lesotho.
Jim Lotz received the first Canada Council “A” grant for non-fiction in 1992 and a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grant as a private scholar in 1989. He is a fellow of the Arctic Institute of North America. In 1954, he was awarded the Queen’s Commendation for Brave Conduct for rescuing a man from a murderous mob during riots in Kano, Nigeria, in May 1953, with three other Special Constables.