Mark Johnston (b. 1960) was born in Hobart, Tasmania and educated at the Friends' School and the University of Tasmania. After teaching at George Town High School and Claremont High School, he moved to Melbourne in 1996 to complete a Master of Arts in History at the University of Melbourne. Between 1988 and 1991 he researched and wrote his PhD in History. It concerned the experiences and attitudes of Australian soldiers in the Second World War. The thesis became the basis of his first book, At the Front Line, published in 1996. The research he undertook for the thesis continues to be useful to him almost every day. Since then he has written nine books, all but one of them on the Australian Army in the Second World War. The exception was his book on the RAAF in the Pacific War. He has felt privileged to speak and write to hundreds of veterans of the war in that period. One highlight of his writing career was travelling to Egypt and London to research the book Alamein: The Australian Story, which he wrote with his friend Peter Stanley. Another highlight was becoming patron of the 9th Division Association in Victoria. His writing has led to numerous speaking engagements, especially at the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne and the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. He is most interested in the experience of ordinary Australians at war, and has established a reputation as one of the leading experts on Australian involvement in World War II.
Mark is the Head of History at Scotch College in Melbourne, where he has taught since 1991. In 2014 and 2015 he was also an Adjunct Senior Lecturer at the Australian National University's Strategic and Defence Studies Centre.