News & Events
Smith Named Outstanding Staff Member
May 11, 2009
Contact: Barbara Peck, (614) 292-0283
Assistant Dean Monte Smith
After 16 years, Monte Smith left his job as a judicial clerk to return to his alma mater as the assistant dean for academic affairs. And just three years later, he’s been voted by the graduating class of 2009 as the Outstanding Staff Member.
“I’m honored,” Smith said. “I feel like I should be giving them an award, not the other way around.”
Smith graduated from the Moritz College of Law in 1990, and he also received his bachelor’s degree in English from The Ohio State University.
Following graduation from Moritz, Smith worked as an associate for Jones Day in Columbus. At Jones Day, Smith’s practice primarily focused on bankruptcy issues.
He then went on to clerk for the Honorable Sandra S. Beckwith in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio in Columbus and Cincinnati. Between Judge Beckwith and a one-year stint with the Honorable Mark R. Abel, Smith spent 14 years as a judicial clerk. He drafted proposed opinions and orders, consulted the judges on various issues, and trained new clerks and externs. “It was a dream job for me; I am still surprised I mustered the courage to leave.”
Smith and his wife, Lisa, wanted to return to Columbus so that their children could be closer to their grandparents. In 2006, Smith accepted the assistant dean of academic affairs position at Moritz.
Here, he oversees or participates in several initiatives, including registrar’s office operations, Mentoring and More @ Moritz, academic advising, the judicial externship program, and clerkship advising. He also teaches an annual Legal Writing and Analysis course and this summer will instruct a Civil Procedure II course.
“What I enjoy most are the one-on-one interactions with students,” he said. “They often apologize for interrupting or taking my time, but their visits are the best part of my day.”
Smith has the opportunity to work with Moritz students through many of the challenges that law school presents. From finding a summer clerkship to help in the classroom, he continually provides students with valuable support and advice.
To this year’s graduating class, Smith had one final piece of guidance. “You will be in a position, personally and professionally, to help so many people. Most of the time, you only have to be willing, and you will reap the rewards long after you have forgotten the minor inconvenience.”