Executive Office

D. Brenton Simons

President and CEO

D. Brenton Simons has served for more than fifteen years as President and CEO of American Ancestors - New England Historic Genealogical Society. The founding genealogical institution in America, it now serves almost 400,000 members in 139 countries, and millions of online users, with 1.4 billion records at American Ancestors.org, and is the anchor location of the PBS series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Simons is the recipient of several honors, including The Bradford Award, the History Award Medal, The John Adams Medal, and the Award of Merit from the American Association for State and Local History.

He serves as Secretary of the Board of The New England Quarterly, the premier journal of New England’s cultural, literary, political, and social history, and most recently as Vice Chair of the Plymouth 400th Anniversary State Commission, by appointment of Governor Charles D. Baker of Massachusetts. He is currently a member of the Commission to Investigate the Seal and Motto of Massachusetts, also by appointment of Governor Baker.

An award-winning author, his most recent book, Boston Beheld: Antique Town and Country Views, was hailed as “the book Jane Austen might have written had she run into Charles Dickens after his return from his Boston visit of 1842.” He is also the author of Witches, Rakes, and Rogues, a popular anthology in nonfiction Boston history.

A graduate of Boston University, Simons is an officer of the American Friends of St. Georges Chapel Windsor (UK); and a member of The Venerable Order of Saint John; the American Antiquarian Society; the Society of the Cincinnati (CT); the Society of Colonial Wars (MA and FL); a Fellow of the Massachusetts Historical Society; and a Proprietor of The Boston Athenæum.