Ozzie Gordon Simmons (1919--1988) was born in the Canadian city of Winnipeg to American parents. He studied sociology at Northwestern University (BA, 1941) and Harvard University (MA, 1948; PhD, 1952). Simmons' doctoral dissertation, "Anglo Americans and Mexican Americans in South Texas: A study in dominant-subordinate group relations," was based on field research he conducted in Gallup, New Mexico and San Antonio, Texas, under Clyde Kluckhohn and Talcott Parsons. Simmons also served in the Air Force during World War II.
Simmons served as field director in Peru for the Bureau of American Ethnology's Institute of Social Anthropology (ISA) from 1949 to 1952. The ISA was an autonomous unit of the Smithsonian Institution which aimed to train Latin American anthropologists. Field personnel taught and mentored students in the field, while also pursuing their own research interests in the host country. In Simmons' case, he became involved in a study on the use of alcohol in the Peruvian town of Lunahuaná. After the ISA came to an end in 1952, Simmons briefly worked in Chile for the Institute of Inter-American Affairs.
Simmons' later career included appointments at Harvard University, the University of Colorado Boulder, the Ford Foundation, and Fordham University's Hispanic Research Center. In 1962, Simmons received the Hofheimer Prize from the American Psychiatric Association. His research interests included Latin American culture and society, medical anthropology, the use of alcohol, social psychiatry, and population. His last book, Perspectives on Development and Population Growth in the Third World, was published in 1988, shortly before his death.
Ozzie Simmons passed away on November 26, 1988 at age 69 of lung cancer.
American Anthropological Association. 1989. Deaths: Ozzie Gordon Simmons. Anthropology Newsletter 30(1): 4.
Demb, Sarah R. 1999. Simmons, Ozzie Gordon, (1919-1988) Papers, 1947-1948: A Finding Aid. Peabody Museum Archives, Harvard University.
Obituary Editor. 1988. Obituaries: Ozzie G. Simmons, 69, Sociology Researcher. New York Times, November 29.
Simmons, Ozzie G. 1964. [Peru Research: Faculty Fellowship Application]. Ozzie Gordon Simmons Papers. National Anthropological Archives.
Born October 9 in Winnipeg, Manitoba
Joins the Air Force for four years during World War II
Earns BA from Northwestern University
Conducts field research in Gallop, New Mexico and San Antonio, Texas under Clyde Kluckhohn and Talcott Parsons at Harvard University
Earns MA in Sociology from Harvard University
Field Director Peru, Institute of Social Anthropology, Smithsonian Institution
Visiting Professor, National University of San Marcos, Lima, Peru
Earns PhD in Sociology from Harvard University
Consulting Anthropologist, Institute of Inter-American Affairs, Chile
Lecturer to Associate Professor of Anthropology, Harvard University
Director, Harvard Community Health Project, Harvard University
Professor of Sociology, University of Colorado Boulder
Director, Institute of Behavioral Science, University of Colorado Boulder
Senior Faculty Associate in Research, Brandeis University
Receives Hofheimer Prize from the American Psychiatric Association
Program Advisor for Latin America and the Caribbean, Ford Foundation
Program Director for Social Science, Ford Foundation
Joins Hispanic Research Center, Fordham University
Dies of lung cancer on November 26 in Westwood, New Jersey