Anglo-American University is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Professor Simon Gordon-Smith, who died peacefully on Tuesday, December 26, 2023, in Marbella, Spain. 

Simon was a beloved faculty member of the School of Business Administration and taught various management-related courses at AAU for a decade. He was well-respected by both faculty and students and known for his cheerful and helpful demeanor and the great gift of getting along well with everyone. 

Simon’s work in project management and civil engineering will be remembered for years to come, along with his contributions to the development of the university, where he served as chair of the AAU Strategic Planning Committee for several years. Additionally, the AAU Strategic Plan, which was developed under his expert supervision, was greatly appreciated by both US and Czech accreditation authorities.   

Dr. Miroslav Svoboda, Vice President for Academic Affairs, who worked alongside Simon during his time at AAU, remembered his colleague with great fondness.

“He was clearly one of the key people [here]. I admired him not only for his expertise, but especially for his kindness and constant willingness to help,” said Svoboda. “He was one of the symbols of the school, and many graduates remember him as a great thesis advisor!”

Simon was born in Nanyuki, Kenya on April 14, 1948. Growing up in England, he attended Sedbergh Boarding School in the Lake District, serving as captain of the school’s award-winning shooting team, and graduated with a degree in civil engineering from the University of Westminster. Later, he earned an MBA from City University of Seattle. 

Simon spearheaded construction projects in various countries, from Brazil to Japan, and helped build in his late twenties what was, at the time, one of Brazil’s longest pipelines. Later, he worked on the original Vancouver Island pipeline project. Simon likewise served as civil engineer and project manager in the construction of over a dozen chapels and church buildings in Thailand, the Philippines, Ukraine, and Russia. In his forties, he entered the corporate realm, working with Chase Bank and helping build their operation center in Yokohama, Japan. 

Simon was also a passionate sailor and took up the sport of competitive mountain biking in his sixties. A devoted husband, father, and grandfather, throughout his life, he dedicated innumerable hours in the service of others and acted as bishop, high counselor, elders quorum president, and minister.

Simon is survived by his wife of 50 years Rostya Gordon-Smith; four children David (Alyson), George (Charakie), Richard (Jwami), and Henry; brother Russell Gordon-Smith; sister Lena Blower; and eleven grandchildren. 

Memorial services will be held in England and in Utah, respectively, on Monday, February 5, 2024, 2:30 pm, at Chesil House, 4 Chesil Street, Winchester, Hampshire, England; and Saturday, February 24, 2024, 11 am, at the Draper LDS Chapel, 13112 South 700 East, Draper, Utah.

Those unable to attend the Winchester service in-person may view the event via live stream at The password is “simon”. The page will only be accessible on the day from a few minutes before the start of service until shortly after it has ended. 

Condolences and remembrances may be posted at

Simon will be greatly missed by all those who had the pleasure of knowing him, and our deepest condolences go out to his family and friends.