In over a decade of travels throughout the world, I have spent time with people on all sides of conflicts. Interacting with them and sharing their life experiences, I have found that individual stories are the key to dispelling stereotypes, fighting misconceptions, and opening paths towards real understanding. It takes constant and conscious effort to see past the stereotypes that we create. Failing to do so, preconceptions are all that we see, missing the context and nuances of a given situation. This belief is interwoven in my photography, presentations and lectures, and the work I do with business leaders on opposite sides of geopolitical and religious divides.
Dick Simon shares the untold human stories behind the headlines in regions of conflict around the world, bridging the gap between “us” and “them”. His photographs and personal accounts from Syria, North Korea, Iran, Israel/Palestine and elsewhere have appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, BBC Persian, NPR/PBS, Huffington Post, and other major media. He has given presentations, using his images and stories to enhance awareness and educate at TEDx, RiseUp Egypt, Harvard, Tufts, YPO Chapters around the world, museums, and a variety of religious, community and business organizations. Exhibitions include Danforth Museum of Art, Griffin Museum of Photography, Minneapolis Photo Center, The Art Institute of New York and The New England Institute of Art. Simon is co-Founder and Chair of the YPO Peace Action Network (PAN). YPO has over 24,000 CEO business leaders in 150 countries. PAN enables them to utilize expertise, relationships and resources to make a difference globally. A serial entrepreneur and real estate developer, Dick is an active social enterprise philanthropist and committed changemaker.