The man who would one day dominate the published Chicken Soup series, Jack Canfield, was born August 19, 1944 in Forth Worth, Texas. Not much is said about his parents or his childhood in the media, but we do know that Jack attended Linsly Military Institute, a boarding school in Wheeling, West Virginia. After high school, Jack left West Virginia for Harvard, from which he graduated in 1966 with a bachelor’s degree in Chinese history.
In 1971, Jack married his first wife Judith, whom he met while studying for his master’s degree at the University of Massachusetts. The couple had two children before divorcing in 1976. Just two years later, Jack married Georgie Lee Noble and together they had a son.
The consummate student, Jack received an honorary Ph.D from the University of Santa Monica in 1981. And nearly a decade later, in 1990, Jack met Mark Victor Hansen, with little knowledge that the two would become successful business partners. Mark and Jack had the idea of collecting inspirational stories and compiling them into a single book that would appeal to everyone. Three years later, Chicken Soup for the Soul was published, and together Jack and Mark climbed to the top of bestsellers‘ ladder.
After the success of his first book, Jack continued to write more books with Mark. The team ballooned to the top of the bestsellers with multiple follow-ups to Chicken Soup for the Soul.
Jack created Canfield Training Group in Santa Barbara, CA where he helped train and motivate people to achieve their professional and personal goals. The Foundation for Self-Esteem in Culver City, CA was born shortly after and works to build resources for human resources professionals, social workers, and welfare recipients. Jack has toured the world giving speeches and lectures on college campuses, conferences, and to world leaders.
As Jack’s success climbed, his marriage came to an end in 1999. Never single for long, Jack’s third marriage was to self-help mogul Igna Marie Mahoney.
Jack’s success has continued to soar into the new millennium. He has written more than 150 pieces during the past 15 years. Jack’s books, besides Chicken Soup for the Soul, are: The Power of Focus, The Aladdin Factor, Dare to Win, The Success Principles, and How to Get From Where You Are to Where You Want to Be. Rhonda Byme also features Jack in The Secret.
He has been named “America’s #1 Success Coach” and praised for his motivational principles. Jack has received numerous awards throughout his lifetime, which include:
- Outstanding Young Man of America – 1978
- American Booksellers Book of the Year – 1995
- Body, Mind, and Soul Award – 1996
- Chancellor’s Medal -1998
- Promise of Earth Award – 1998
- Oprah‘s Angel Network Award- 1999.
Although Jack Canfield has succeeded in the publishing and motivational field, he continues to write and produce inspirational materials for people across the world.
image via umassmag.com