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Jim Guidry Commentaries
Texas A&M University at Galveston
Smith Appointed to Top Post at TAMUG
Friday, February 04, 2011
-Rear Admiral Robert Smith III US Navy (retired), currently senior vice president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas with responsibility for Houston-based operations, was appointed today by The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents to serve as a vice president at Texas A&M University and president/chief executive officer at Texas A&M at Galveston. Smith, who attained the rank of rear admiral during a nearly 35-year Navy career of active duty and reserve service, will assume his new duties on April 18.
Texas A&M President R. Bowen Loftin, who held the top position at Galveston from 2005 until 2009, said Smith's strong financial, economic and budgetary background, as well as his proven record of effective leadership and strategic management, were important factors in his selection.
" After having served as a Texas A&M University vice president and chief executive officer for the Galveston branch campus for four years prior to becoming president of Texas A&M, I am very much aware of the leadership skills required as well as the responsibilities and demands placed on the individual who has the privilege of serving in this important position," Loftin said. "Smith's credentials and outstanding record of service to our state and nation are impressive. He offers a unique blend of strong financial management and leadership skills, unwavering commitment to public service and familiarity with the Galveston campus and its operations.
"Smith was selected following an extensive nationwide search that produced a distinguished pool of qualified applicants. I am confident that we have identified t he right person to help us continue to enhance the marine-oriented Galveston campus as it moves forward with its tremendous teaching and research programs."
Smith, a member of Texas A&M's Class of 1961, has held his current position as senior vice president in charge of the Houston branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas since 1987. Prior to his present role, Smith held increasingly responsible leadership positions at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, including vice president and secretary, and public information officer and assistant secretary of the board. Also, he successfully managed numerous special assignments coordinating Federal Reserve System and Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas responsibilities. He also served as assistant secretary of the board of governors in Washington, D.C. during 1975.
Smith, who earned a bachelor of science degree in agricultural economics from Texas A&M, is also a graduate of the School of Banking of the South at Louisiana State University. In addition, he attended the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, completing studies in national and international security.
Smith's long and distinguished military career began in 1962 as a commissioned officer in the Navy following graduation from Texas A&M. He worked his way up through the officer ranks. His final duty station was chief of staff, US Pacific Fleet, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. After almost 35 years of service, Smith retired from the Navy in 1996.
He has an extensive record of service to Texas A&M and its Galveston campus, currently serving as chairman of the President's Council of Advisors and a member of the advisory board for the Department of Finance. He is past president of The Association of Former Students and former trustee and chairman of the Texas A&M Foundation. Additionally, he served on the Board of Visitors for the Galveston campus and as a member of the Texas Maritime Academy board.
Smith's many awards, honors and accolades include induction into Texas A&M's Corps of Cadets Hall of Honor and he holds "distinguished alumnus" designation from the university and its College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. He has also served on numerous local, state and national civic boards.
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