John Hemmingsen, as a Metallurgical Engineer, was Vice President for a global corporation and spent 46 years in the Steel Industry in Canada and the USA. He ran and eventually built steel foundries in several different countries, lastly, and with most personal impact, China. He and his wife Cherie have residences on Quadra Island, in Tega Cay, South Carolina and Portland, Oregon.

Hemmingsen's self-published memoir entitled 2000 days in China"; (1998-2009) describes his efforts to help establish a business in Taiyuan, Shanxi Province. This undertaking gave rise to his development of relationships, particularly four children and their families. These four children were brought to Canada for a visit and cultural exchange. While deeply appreciative of Chinese history, Hemmingsen frankly describes "the massive problems that continue to plague China in that country's incredible race to a permanent status as a dominant industrial power."

[BCBW 2010] "Mining"