Born in 1897, John "Gee" Edward Ahern was educated at Saint Mary’s University before attending Law School at Dalhousie University. From there, he entered into the world of publishing and editing before launching his political career. He served as Alderman from 1941 until 1946, and was elected mayor of Halifax in 1946, finishing his term in 1949. He returned to politics in 1952 as Alderman before successfully running for the Halifax North provincial seat in 1956 as a member of the Liberal Party. He would be re-elected to serve a second term.
During his time in politics, Ahern was involved in many projects, including the building of the Halifax Memorial Library and the Angus L. MacDonald Bridge, but his proudest accomplishment was the establishment of the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame.
In his youth, Ahern was a well-known sportsman, playing hockey, rugby, and baseball. He dedicated his free time to the promotion of sport. Ahern organized numerous teams, competitions, leagues, and races during the 1920s, and his passion for sports inspired him to write sports columns for the Halifax Herald.
After securing a government grant to open the Sport Hall of Fame, Ahern created a Board of Directors who selected the original inductees. The first class of inductees included Nova Scotia sport legends such as Aileen Meagher, Johnny Miles, Sam Langford, and George Dixon. His love of sports encouraged him to collect a massive assortment of local sports memorabilia and photographs, which he donated to the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame. Ahern's collection remains the largest single donation to the Hall of Fame.
Gee Ahern passed away in 1969, having dedicated his life not only to local sport but also to the service of his community. He was posthumously inducted into the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame as a builder in 1983.