2015 – Jennifer Simons

This year the Thakore Family Foundation, The India Club of Vancouver and the J.S. Woodsworth Chair in the Humanities at Simon Fraser University celebrates the 24th annual Gandhi Jayanti Celebration with an Award to Jennifer Simons for her work on nuclear disarmament, peace and human rights.

Jennifer is an award-winning educator, thought leader and nuclear disarmament specialist. As Founder and President of The Simons Foundation, an innovative private foundation based in Vancouver, Canada, Dr. Simons has pioneered research, advocacy and action in advancing nuclear disarmament, peace, human rights and global co-operation, and regularly speaks on nuclear disarmament issues at international conferences and other events. Dr. Simons is also personally committed to supporting the arts and cultural community in Vancouver.

On October 3rd, Jennifer will talk about her work on nuclear disarmament, peace and human rights.

Gandhi was able to both motivate and empower people – the common people – to stand against terrible injustice and take actions toward achieving a society based on principles of human community.  Jennifer Simons and Mahatma Gandhi both devoted their lives to creativity, commitment, and a deep concern for human rights. And both had a passion for peace and non-violence.

She was appointed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs to the Canadian Government Delegation to the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference at the United Nations in 2000, and again to the Non-Proliferation Treaty PrepCom at the United Nations in 2002 and was a member of the Steering Committee of the Foreign Affairs Canada Consultations on Nuclear Issues, as well as a member of the Executive Group of the Canadian Committee for the 50th Anniversary of the United Nations.

Dr. Simons is a Founding Partner of Global Zero, an international initiative of 300 world leaders dedicated to achieving the phased, verified elimination of nuclear weapons by 2030.

Dr. Simons was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2010 for her contributions to the promotion of peace and disarmament and received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.  She was also awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002 for her service to the global effort to eradicate landmines. Dr. Simons received the 2006 Vancouver Citizens’ Peace Award in recognition of her leadership, energy and effort to the promotion of peace and disarmament, and was honoured by Simon Fraser University and the Alumni Association with a 2009 Outstanding Alumni Award for her Service to the Community.  In 1998, she received the Anniversary Jubilee Medal Award of Highest Merit for Contribution to Development of Civil Society by Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic and Simon Fraser University honoured Dr. Simons with the Jennifer Allen Simons Chair in Liberal Studies and presented her with the Chancellor’s Distinguished Service Award in 1996. In 1999, she was honoured with an Award for Contribution to Education by Wilp Wilxo’oskwhl Nisga’a House of Wisdom, Nass Valley, Canada, received the First Annual Canadian Peace Award for Peace Philanthropy in 2000, and an Honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of Northern British Columbia in 2001.