John David Smith Memorial Scholarship Endowed By Concord University Foundation

ATHENS – A scholarship fund has been endowed by the Concord University Foundation, Inc. in memory of Professor of Social Work Dr. John David Smith. Dr. Smith died suddenly Saturday morning, Oct. 21 from a brief battle with cancer.
The John David Smith Memorial Scholarship will benefit Concord University students and will serve to continue Dr. Smith’s legacy at Concord and in higher education.

Dr. Smith’s involvement at Concord encompassed many levels ranging from academics to administration to alumni activities. He was a beloved mentor to students, a respected faculty member, a dedicated alumnus and a leader in higher education beyond Concord. His community involvement extended to the Town of Athens where he made his home.

Born Sept. 14, 1956 in Hinton, he was the son of the late David Elmo Smith and Mildred Parker Smith. John David was a graduate of Hinton High School and received his Bachelor of Social Work in 1976 from Concord College. John David valued education and was a life-long learner, going on to obtain a Master’s of Social Work from WVU in 1981, Master of Arts in Psychology from WV College of Graduate Studies in 1988, Juris Doctor from the University of Toledo, College of Law in 1991 and an LL.M. in Health and Administrative Law from DePaul University, School of Law in 1998.

John David returned to Athens to become an Associate Professor and Director of the Social Work Program at Concord College. In 2001 he was named Chair of the Division of Social Sciences, and Professor and Director of the Social Work Program until 2005. At that time he assumed the responsibility of Professor and Director of the Social Work Program, Legal Studies and Pre-Law programs, Counseling Center, and the Public Service Initiative.

In 2006 he was appointed as the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, until 2009 at which time he served as Interim Vice President and Academic Dean. In 2010 John David was appointed as Vice President and Academic Dean until 2011 at which time he served as Professor and Chair of the Social Work Department, MSW Program Director, Director of Legal Studies and Pre-Law, Primary Investigator Public Service Initiatives, and Director of Appalachian Leadership and Education Fellows, positions he held until his death.

John David was active on many levels in the community. He was currently serving as the Chair of the West Virginia Social Work Education Consortium. He also served on the boards of Southern WV Community Corrections, Governor’s Committee on Community Corrections, Concord University Research Corp., Mercer Co. Drug Court, Appalachian Area Agency on Aging, Concord University Alumni Association and was affiliated with various fraternities and honor societies.
Previous board affiliations include West Virginia Developmental Disabilities, Hospice of Southern West Virginia, National Network of Social Work Managers, WV National Association of Social Workers and various others.

Over the course of his career, John David was honored by numerous agencies and organizations, as well as being named the Social Worker of the Year in 1995, NASW Region I. He also received the Hawey Wells Citizenship Award, Fraternity Alumni of the Year, Pi Kappa Alpha, Concord University Outstanding Alumnus award in 2010 and Alumnus of the Year in 2012. John David also served on the Athens Town Council since 2005.

Donations to the John David Smith Memorial Scholarship may be made online at
Contributions may also be made by check to the Concord University Foundation, Inc. Write “John David Smith Memorial Scholarship” on the memo line of the check and mail to Office of Advancement, Concord University, P.O. Box 1000, Athens, WV 24712-1000. Donations may also be hand delivered to the Office of Advancement in University Point on the Athens campus.

For additional information about please contact the Concord University Foundation at or 304-384-6266.

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