Ken Simons: web designer, editor, and archivist

Curriculum vitae

Ken Simons
born 1956 in British Columbia, Canada
lived until 1979 in BC, from then until 1996 in England, and subsequently in Toronto.
Email: info at
Spouse: Maggie Helwig link
Children: one daughter, Simone Helwig (born 1995)
Parents: Arthur and Margaret Simons [Salt Spring Island, BC]; siblings Wayne Simons [BC] and Bob Simons [died 1999] link


Bachelor of Arts: Honours First Class (Iberian and Latin American Studies), 1989 University of Southampton, England.
Dissertation title: “A política nuclear no Brasil 1945-1988”

Earlier education:

  • Attended University of Victoria, BC Canada from 1973-75
  • Gulf Islands Secondary School, Ganges BC Canada 1968-73; Saltspring Elementary, Ganges BC Canada 1966-68; Marlborough Elementary, Burnaby BC Canada 1962-66


Paid editorial work

  • Managing editor Peace Magazine 2002-present [on acting basis for individual issues 1997-2002]
  • Production manager Canadian Forum 1999
  • Office manager Peace Magazine 1997-present
  • Editor/production worker Peace News (UK) 1990-1996
  • Production manager The Martlet 1981
  • Editor-in-chief The Martlet (University of Victoria) 1978-79

Freelance work

Websites designed, edited, and maintained

Currently webmaster for: (since 1997); / and subsidiary sites (since 1999); / (since 2002); (since 2003); (since 2004); and subsidiary sites (since 2005); (since 2008); (since 2008); Science for Peace (since 2009); Collected Works of Florence Nightingale (since 2010); The Russian Quest for Peace and Democracy (since 2010); Saint Stephen-in-the-Fields Anglican Church (since 2011); Hiroshima Day Coalition (since 2012); The Nightingale Society (since 2012); Canadian Sanctuary Network (since 2012), Toronto Urban Native Ministry (since 2013), Golden Rule Dog Training (since 2015), Canadian Pugwash Group (since 2017). Also designed (but do not maintain) the updated website for Canadian Network Against Nuclear Weapons.

Was original designer and webmaster for for 11 years, Oct 1997-Nov 2008;, 2008-2018; and Mar 2009-present (excepting a 12-month gap in 2018-19)

Monographs copy-edited and designed

  • Metta Spencer The Russian Quest for Peace and Democracy (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2010)
  • Nonviolence and Social Empowerment, Chris Ney, ed. (London: WRI, 2005).
  • The Lessons of Yugoslavia, Metta Spencer, ed. (London: Elsevier Press, 2000)
  • Separatism: Democracy and Disintegration, Metta Spencer, ed. (Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 1998)
  • PN Educational Offprints 1 and 2, Ken Simons, ed. (London: Peace News, 1993/94)
  • Nonviolent Struggle and Social Defence, Shelley Anderson and Janet Larmore eds. (London: WRI, 1991)
  • Opening Doors to Peace, Mitzi Bales ed. (London: WRI, 1991)

Editorial work on shorter papers and dissertations

I have edited academic papers and dissertations in the UK and Canada; have done editorial and design/layout work on a number of reports, book chapters, and newsletters; converted print manuscripts to ebook format; and have designed maps, charts, and schematic diagrams for print publication.

Consultancy work

I do computer troubleshooting and consulting on a freelance basis, including network setup, hardware and software upgrades, data rescue, and document layout (Quark or Scribus).

Other fulltime work in the nonprofit sector

  • Worker, Balham Food and Book Co-operative, London UK, 1983-85
  • Assistant warden, Youth Hostels Association, London UK, 1980-83
  • Fulltime volunteer, Clapham Action for Vocational Education (adult literacy), London UK, 1979-80
  • Coordinator of Salt Spring Island recycle depot, 1974

Committee work

  • Peace Magazine editorial group, 1996-present
  • Personnel selection committees, War Resisters’ International and Peace News, 1992-1996
  • Newsletter committee, National Peace Council 1992-94
  • Organising committee for post-Gulf War conference, 1991
  • Urgent response network, National Peace Council 1990-93
  • Peace News Trustees board, 1990-1996

Talks, lectures and courses taught

  • Talk on Kosovo to the Communities in Conflict working group, University of Toronto 2000
  • Workshop on solidarity movements, “Choosing Peace Together” conference, Porec, Croatia, 1998
  • Workshop on former-Yugoslavia, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Cardiff, Wales 1993
  • Workshops on peace journalism, War Resisters’ International conferences in 1990, 1991, 1992, 1994
  • Bicycle maintenance teacher, Clapham and Battersea Adult Education Institute, London UK 1981-1984
  • Bicycle maintenance teacher, Braziers College, Oxfordshire 1983
  • Lecture on wholefood cookery to 6th form domestic science class, Bedford UK 1983
  • Adult literacy animateur, Frontier College, BC/Alberta 1981
  • Literacy tutor, CAVE adult literacy club, London UK 1978-1980



Numerous articles in Sanity (UK), Peace News (UK), The Martlet (Canada), Peace Magazine (Canada)

Also: Nonviolent Activist (USA), Tribune (UK), Comeback (UK).

Chapters in books

Civil society and the Kosovo crisis, 1981-1999 in Metta Spencer ed. The Lessons of Yugoslavia (London: Elsevier Press, 2000)


Studied Portuguese to degree level, Spanish to second-year university level, and French to high-school level. I have done translations of articles from Portuguese, Spanish, and French for publication; and have cleaned up other translations from/to the above languages, including much of the pre-2009 material on the website. I also understand some German and Italian, and have a rough working knowledge of the south Slavic languages.

Technical skills

I learned cut-and-paste layout skills back in the days of photo-offset newspaper production, together with experience in early (punched-tape) photosetting computers.

In late 1980s, I began to use PCs for word processing and rudimentary programming. From 1990 onwards, desktop publishing (with Ventura Publisher) was a core part of my working life. [I now use Quark and Scribus regularly for page layout.]

I began designing websites in 1996. I have upgraded site architecture as new standards became expected — for instance, introducing CSS layouts from 1998; integrating and adapting Perl scripts in the late 1990s; PHP and flat-text databases in the early 2000s; SQL in the late 2000s; and responsive layouts (with HTML5) in the early 2010s.

I now have a range of sites which run on either flat-text or SQL content management systems. My preferred CMS for large projects is Textpattern. For small sites, I use GetSimple and CMSimple.