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John Heaton

Published: October 24, 2008
John Heaton

Image by Chris Strong

“The interesting thing about sailing — especially racing — is all the dimensions of it. It’s an interesting problem with some intellectual parts to it, some sporting parts, and some engineering parts. We race with eight people, so there’s the question of how you organize them to do something together. How do you make the boat go fast in one direction, which involves trimming the sails, understanding crew positioning, and responding to conditions? How do you respond to the competition? We go out just to cruise around, but I far prefer racing because all these other parts are more interesting to think about.”


John Heaton, Joseph L. Gidwitz Professor of Finance, was photographed by Chris Strong on his Beneteau 36.7 on Lake Michigan. He started sailing with his parents while growing up in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, and now sails weekly and races every two weeks, including major regattas and long-distance events like the Chicago–Mackinac Race. He owns the boat As You Wish with Sue Hogan and Grace Tsiang, a senior lecturer in economics in the College.—K.F.

Last Updated 5/14/09