Simon grew up in El Paso, Texas; he attended Mesita Elementary School, and in 1963 graduated from El Paso High School. He went on to graduate from the University of Texas at El Paso, and received a law degree from the University of Texas Law School in Austin.
At age 25, he became a founding member of Nader's Raiders, a high-profile public interest and advocacy group spearheaded by Ralph Nader which critically examined the Federal Trade Commission. As a result of the group's work, the FTC reformed and toughened its consumer protection and anti-trust enforcement.
He has testified to Congress, and published numerous articles and books on consumer advocacy issues. In the 1980s, he served as executive director of the National Citizens Committee for Broadcasting, a national advocacy group backed by Nader which drew attention to excessive violence on children's TV programming. The group, which often struggled with funding issues, was frequently in the news, and—following the breakup of the AT&T monopoly—worked to provide consumers with information to compare long distance services provided by various carriers.
Simon wrote an intensely personal play titled The Actual Dance, which chronicles an emotional family roller coaster that began when his wife was diagnosed with breast cancer. "It's sad when two loving souls face leaving each other because of a life-threatening illness," he told a Houston reporter in 2018.
Simon's father was a traveling salesman, and his mother worked as a bookkeeper. In 1966, he married his wife, Susan (née Kalmans), a former teacher and psychiatric social worker. They currently live in McLean, Virginia, and have two grown children and four grandchildren. Their son, Marcus Simon, is a state delegate serving in Virginia; their daughter, Dr. Rachael Simon Proper, is a pediatric dentist in Catonsville, Maryland.
- The Actual Dance website, retrieved September 29, 2019
- About the Artists website, retrieved September 29, 2019
- El Paso High School website, retrieved October 2, 2019
- The Actual Dance website, retrieved October 2, 2019
- Nader‐Raiding No Plush Job, by Nan Robertson, The New York Times, January 29, 1971, retrieved September 29, 2019
- Testimony of Samuel A. Simon, Executive Director, National Citizens committee for Broadcasting, before the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Consumer Protection and Finance, Committee on Energy and Commerce, December 9, 1981, retrieved September 29, 2019
- After Divestiture: What the AT&T Settlement Means for Business and Residential Telephone Service, by Samuel A. Simon and Michael Whelan, published June 23, 1985, Macmillan Publishing Company, Inc., retrieved September 29, 2019
- Washington Post LiveOnline, Long-Distance Plans: How Do You Rate?, September 21, 1999, retrieved September 29, 2019
- Reverse the Charges: How to Save Money on Your Phone Bill, by Samuel A. Simon and Joseph W. Waz, Jr., Random House, April 1, 1983, retrieved September 29, 2019
- Decision File: Televised Violence And Children, by Michael Decourcy Hinds, The New York Times, September 3, 1982, retrieved September 20. 2019
- TV Citizens Group in Financial Trouble, by Sally Bedell, The New York Times, July 20, 1982, retrieved September 29, 2019
- Choosing A Phone Company, by Elizabeth Tucker, The Washington Post, August 5, 1984, retrieved September 29, 2019
- "The Actual Dance" a public look at love and cancer in one-man play, by Aaron Howard, Jewish Herald Voice, October 4, 2018, retrieved September 29, 2019
- U.S. News Health medical professionals listing, retrieved October 2, 2019
- El Paso High School profiles, retrieved October 2, 2019
- Inside NOVA, October 20, 2016, retrieved September 2019
- Virginia Recreational Facilities Authority Act, retrieved September 29, 2019
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