Alan D. Ridge was born in Brighton, England in 1926 and graduated from the University of London in 1947, specializing in History and Archives Administration. His career as an archivist began with the London County Council Archives, followed by his appointment as Head of the Records and Registry Service of the National Coal Board.
Alan’s archival career in Canada began in 1962, when he moved to Montreal to establish the archival program at McGill University. In 1968 he became Provincial Archivist of Alberta, succeeding Hugh Taylor. He served as Provincial Archivist for 16 years, during which time he oversaw the development of the Archives into a major research institution, and effectively initiated the records management program in the provincial government. He retired as Provincial Archivist in 1984.
He was active in many professional associations, including the Association of Canadian Archivists, the Alberta Society of Archivists, and the Historical Society of Alberta. He also taught archives and records management courses at the University of Alberta. In 1985 he was invested in the Order of Canada. He died in 1997.