Raised in south central British Columbia, I now reside in Alberta. As a professional Cartographer and Geographic Information Analyst, I have combined my career with my lifelong interest in mapping and the exploration of western Canada. This has led to the creation of numerous thematic maps built around the life experiences of such historic figures as Simon Fraser, Peter Fidler, Charlotte Small, David Thompson, and Captain George Vancouver.
These maps along with the years of research behind them have found their way into a variety of publications, newsletters, magazines and books including the long-awaited ‘The Writings of David Thompson’. I have also the good fortune to act as a consultant on many interesting writing projects such as the National Geographic publication, Crown of the Continent.
In the spring of 2009, copies of my maps highlighting the travels of David Thompson, along with a map displaying the travels of Charlotte Small based on the research and writings of my wife Leanne Playter-Korsos, soared into the night sky on the Space Shuttle Discovery. The crew of STS-119 delivered the maps to the International Space Station for inclusion in a fall broadcast to school children in Canada and the US. Never in a million years did I think that my maps would orbit the earth. It is a surreal feeling seeing a picture of your work floating in the window of the International Space Station as it circumnavigates the planet.
In the summer of 2009,my wife Leanne and I had the privilege of assisting the BBC in choosing filming locations in Jasper National Park for a documentary entitled Ray Mears Northern Wilderness. The documentary focused on the exploration of Canada and included a piece on David Thompson. A month later we were interviewed on-camera on the banks of the Blaeberry River below Howse Pass concerning the explorations of David Thompson and travels of Charlotte Small. It was a unique and exciting experience, and enjoyed working with host Ray Mears, producer Julia Foote and the production crew Sally, Andy and Allan.
My proudest achievement to date however is the renaming of Mount David in Banff National Park to Mount David Thompson, an effort finalized and approved in the fall of 2006 by the Geographic Names Board of Canada. It is a source of some humour among friends that this is a feat that a former Prime Minister could not accomplish (re: Jean Chrétien and Mount Logan).
I am presently a member of the Alberta Land Surveyors Association, the Association of Canadian Map Libraries and Archives, Canadian Cartographic Association and The Centre for Rupert’s Land Studies . I am also the originator of the 2008 David Thompson Brigade concept, a founding member and Past President & Chairman of the 2008 David Thompson Brigade Society.