Ryan O’Connor is an award-winning writer and historian. He is the author of The First Green Wave: Pollution Probe and the Origins of Environmental Activism in Ontario, which was published by UBC Press to critical acclaim in 2015. He is working on his second book, which examines the golden age of advertising in Toronto.

An Associate Member of the Centre for Environment, Heritage and Policy at the University of Stirling (Scotland), Ryan is a graduate of the University of Prince Edward Island, Queen’s University, and the University of Western Ontario, where he completed a PhD in Canadian history. His academic career has included stops at Trent University and the University of Prince Edward Island, where he taught Canadian studies, environmental studies, and history, as well as a two year, SSHRC-funded postdoctoral fellowship. His peer-reviewed research has been published in Acadiensis, Ontario History, and the Journal of Policy History. In 2016 The First Green Wave received the J.J. Talman Award, conferred annually by the Ontario Historical Society to "the best book on Ontario’s social, economic, political or cultural history." That same year his article, "Property, Technology, and Environmental Policy: The Politics of Acid Rain in Ontario, 1978-1985," co-authored with Owen Temby, was awarded the Riddell Award for "the best article on Ontario’s history." 

In 2017 he was named editor of The Island Magazine, the biannual publication of the Prince Edward Island Museum and Heritage Foundation.