Meet the Women In Peace Team

James W. Gould, PhD  – Founder, developed the women peacemakers database

Jim is a veteran of five years in World War II as a combat infantryman from Normandy to the Elbe. He earned five battle stars and a Purple Heart. This experience of witnessing senseless deaths, the total ruin of once beautiful cities, and the reality of mass death in a liberated concentration camp made him a firm opponent of all war, but not a pacifist, yet… Convinced that diplomacy was a superior method to resolving conflict than war, Jim served in the US diplomatic service for five years. Two of his assignments were to areas of war: the Indonesian War of Independence, and the Civil War in China. Jim recognized that war can bring change, and even liberation, but at a terrible cost.

Jim then attained a PhD in International Relations at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, which helped him to  explore alternative means of preventing and ending wars. In 1955, he then took a job teaching International Relations at Claremont Men’s College in Claremont California, which led him to examine the philosophical study of nonviolence, especially the writings of Leo Tolstoi. Jim found the practical application of nonviolent theory in the successes of Mohandas Gandhi in South Africa and India. He became an absolute pacifist in the rejection of all violence during this time.

His decision to become an absolute pacifist led Jim to join a community of activists who applied the principles of nonviolence, the Society of Friends, or Quakers. He made vigils at General Dynamics against the manufacture of weapons that were killing civilians in the Vietnam War, and joined boycotts of grapes to support the nonviolent protests of César Chavez.

The connection of nonviolence and women came while teaching courses in peace studies at Scripps College for women in the 1960’s. In Jim’s classes, young women found liberation from patriarchal norms, and challenged the militarism of American foreign policy. A course in the Humanities on Women and Peace opened new visions of the power of women. His courses celebrated the birthdays of great women peace makers such as Jane Addams and Bertha von Suttner, and read the testimonies of Dorothy Day and Vera Brittain. Out of this course emerged Jim’s first idea about developing a calendar of woman peacemakers’ birthdays, accomplishments, and insights into a world without war.  The database of women peacemakers grew over a 40 year period to what it is now, the Women in Peace website.

Elizabeth Gould, MLIS, MAIR - WIP Site Manager  

Elizabeth is proud to have been raised by a feminist peacemaker and a mom who was active in women’s family planning. Following her first Master’s degree in Library and Information Sciences, Elizabeth conducted research examining the socioeconomic impacts of information and communication technologies in emerging and developing economies (including how women are less represented in the technology sphere). For her second Masters degree in Intercultural Communication, Elizabeth wrote her thesis on how ecotourists can be both environmentally and socially responsible.

Linn Gould, MS, MPH - WIP Website Advisor

Linn is the executive director of Just Health Action, a non-profit that advocates for reducing health inequities that result from social, economic, environmental, and political conditions. It goes without saying that war and its root causes, including but not limited to racism, classism, and sexism are significant determinants of health. Linn believes that both promoting women and ending wars will result in a much healthier and more equitable world and as a result loves advising on the Women in Peace website.

Steven G. Gilbert, PhD, DABT - First put women peacemakers on Toxipedia website   

Steve is the executive director of the Institute of Neurotoxicology & Neurological Disorders (INND) and creator of the Toxipedia website with the purpose of putting scientific information in the context of history, society, and culture. His interest in developing the initial Women in Peace (WIP) website stemmed from a longstanding focus on history and nonviolence. Steve, is convinced that a deeper knowledge of global women peacemakers will inspire others to work toward a more peaceful and healthy world.

Jeff Williams - WIP Site Editor

Jeff Williams has maintained the Women in Peace website since its inception as editor and fact-checker. He is a firm believer in the importance of clear communication, having worked as an editor, educator, and translator. He holds a bachelor's degree from Oberlin College, with further academic pursuits at Doshisha University and the University of Washington.