Many of you will by now have heard the awful news that Simon Parrish died peacefully last Friday night after a long battle with cancer. Our thoughts go out to Chloe, his family and all those who have been touched by this sad passing.
A formal tribute will be posted on the IATI website later today, and there is a page on the DI website where you can send a personal message to Chloe or make a donation to the hospice where Simon spent his last days. We thought it would also be appropriate to open this topic for the IATI community to share their memories and tributes. Please feel free to post your thoughts, however big or small.
It is not an exaggeration to say that without Simon IATI might never have got off the ground. Simon led the research and evidence gathering that fed into the establishment of IATI in Accra in 2008. For the next three years he was both the lubrication and the glue that pulled together a disparate group of actors to create the IATI standard. He got tech geeks and policy wonks to speak the same language. He managed to get impatient civil society activists to find common ground with cautious statisticians and government officials. And fittingly it was Simon who presented IATI (with its 17 publishers!) at Busan at the end of 2011.
Bear in mind that in 2008 transparency, open data and multi-stakeholder initiatives were not the concepts we take for granted today. Simon stood in the forefront of this struggle and we will forever be in his debt.
He was also a really really good person. And a special friend.