Born in 1945, at Qormi, Malta, the son of Lawrence and Kathleen-Joan neè Whitcher, Dr Joseph F. Grima was educated at St Monica School, The Lyceum and the University of Malta from where he graduated BA(Hons), MA and PhD in History and also obtained a Diploma in Educational Administration and Management. He is also a member of the Malta Institute of Management. He was awarded bursaries by the Council of Europe and attended courses in Naples, London, Tarquinia, York and Lecce. During a career wholly connected with Education, he was a teacher of History in Secondary Schools, Junior Lyceums, Sixth Forms, visiting lecturer/examiner in History at the University of Malta, and chairman/member of a number of boards in MATSEC, the local Matriculation Board.
He worked in the Education Division as Head of Department of History, Assistant Head of School, Head of School and retired on pension in 2006 in the grade of Assistant Director of Education. Between 2003 and 2006 he was a member of the European Union’s Education Sub-Committee based in Brussels and was the Education Ministry’s representative at the Arts Faculty Board of the University of Malta from 2000 to 2009.
He is a member of various local cultural and history-based societies and parish councils, and held the post of Honorary Secretary of the Malta Historical Society from 1979 to 2011. In 2000 and 2001 the Qormi Local Council honoured him with its award of Għarfien Il-Ħila for Literature and Ġieħ Il-Belt Pinto, its highest honour, in 2006. He was married to the late Connie neè Cardona (+ 2011) and has a son, David.
He has written numerous articles of a historical and cultural nature in the local press, together with original papers in Melita Historica, Storja ’78, Proceedings of History Week, Proceedings of the 2005 International Conference on The Ritual Year, The Order of St John from Jerusalem to Malta, Journal of the Monastic Military Orders and Sacra Militia together with papers in collective publications on Good Friday in Malta, Maltese Band Clubs, and Maltese Parish Churches and Feasts. His publications include six books on the history of his native Qormi and its two parishes, a history of The Order of St John in Malta, France and Malta 1798-1800, Printing and Censorship in Malta 1642-1839, Legacy of an Order 360˚ (2 volumes), The Historic Chapels of Malta and Gozo 360º (2 volumes), The Holy Week Processional Statues in the Maltese Islands and The Unione Cattolica San Giuseppe – Founder of APS Bank Ltd.. For the Malta Historical Society, he was the editor of Proceedings of History Week 1992, 60th Anniversary of the Malta Historical Society – A Commemoration and five issues (1999, 2008-2011) of the annual history journal Melita Historica.