John attended the University of Montana and School of Law and received his juris doctor, with honors, in 1967. He was a member of Phi Delta Phi and an associate editor of the Montana Law Review. In 1967-68 he clerked for Judge Walter Pope of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco. He practiced in all levels of Montana courts including the U.S. District Court and the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

John moved to Missoula joining Dan Spoon in 1991; they practiced law together for 20 years. Partners Will Ballew and Bryan Spoon had the opportunity to know and work with John.

John passed away in February 2011 after complications from lung cancer. While he is greatly missed within the firm, his beliefs and values remain. While active in his community, John was recognized and well known as the ultimate professional; always firm but fair to his adversary.