BOONE, N.C. — Dr. Timothy J. Smith, professor of anthropology at Appalachian State University, is one of 24 University of North Carolina System employees taking part in the System’s third annual Executive Leadership Institute. The program aims to prepare and develop the next generation of leaders in the UNC System. Smith is the first App State employee chosen for the program.
In her nomination letter for Smith, App State Chancellor Sheri Everts wrote, “Throughout his career, Tim has shown a passion for service and demonstrated an unwavering dedication to administrative responsibilities with a measurable success in improving the lives of faculty, staff and students.”
Smith noted the support he received from the university, saying, “I owe a huge debt to my colleagues at App State for supporting me in various progressive leadership roles.” In particular, he shared that his selection for the institute demonstrates Everts’ strong support of faculty and staff across App State.
“This demonstrates Chancellor Everts’ commitment to expanding professional development opportunities for faculty with a special focus on strengthening the principles of shared governance, which requires faculty to have a working knowledge of our roles and responsibilities as employees of a constituent member institution of the University of North Carolina System,” said Smith.
The 10-month program, which began in June and continues to April 2023, is designed to deepen participants’ capacity to immediately contribute to the success of their institution as well as the broader UNC System.
Institute members gain an overview of the UNC System, its operations and leadership opportunities, and receive executive coaching on an individual level and in a team setting.
As part of the program, leading experts from across the UNC System deliver instruction via three learning modules designed to strengthen expertise essential for success at the executive level. These interactive and experiential immersion modules — executive leadership, leading teams and leading the enterprise — will be delivered via a hybrid of virtual and face-to-face instruction at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical University, UNC-Chapel Hill and UNC Charlotte over the course of the program. The team and individual executive coaching component is provided in partnership with UNC Wilmington.
Upon completion of the program, participants will receive a certificate and have the opportunity to pay it forward as mentors for future cohorts — ensuring promising talent continues to develop and advance in careers across the UNC System.
About Dr. Timothy Smith
Smith, a professor in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Anthropology, joined App State’s faculty in 2008. He served as chair of the department from 2016 to 2021, during which time the department grew to be the largest undergraduate-only anthropology department in the United States.
His teaching focuses on the cultural politics of representation and indigenous movements, cultural and political constructions of knowledge, language and culture, contemporary Latin America, identity formation and the practical application of theory/knowledge.
Smith is also the director of the Department of Anthropology’s honors program and has previously served on numerous leadership committees throughout the university, on which he advocated for the support of academics and ensuring that excellence in teaching, informed by research, remains the priority of App State.
He was inducted into the College of Arts and Sciences’ Academy of Outstanding Teachers in 2015. Additionally, he is the recipient of the college’s 2012 William C. Strickland Outstanding Young Faculty Award and the 2017–18 Jimmy Smith Outstanding Service Award. In 2019, he was one of six App State faculty recognized with a campus-level Excellence in Teaching Award, conferred by the UNC System.
In 2016, Smith was one of nine members chosen to participate in the inaugural Chancellor’s Academic Leadership Development Program (ALDP), which provides formal assistance and training to a diverse group of App State faculty and staff in their exploration and development of leadership capabilities. This fall, Smith serves as a Chancellor’s Advanced Leadership Experience Fellow — an initiative that builds on the objectives of ALDP and provides ALDP graduates with opportunities to further apply their leadership knowledge and skills on campus.
He holds a B.A. in Latin American studies with a focus on Mesoamerican linguistics and a B.S. in anthropology from Tulane University, as well as an M.A. and a Ph.D., both in anthropology, from the State University of New York at Albany.
In addition to his roles at App State, Smith currently serves as vice president of the UNC Press Board of Governors. He has served on the board since 2016.
What do you think?
Share your feedback on this story.
About the Department of Anthropology
The Department of Anthropology offers a comparative and holistic approach to the study of the human experience. The anthropological perspective provides a broad understanding of the origins as well as the meaning of physical and cultural diversity in the world — past, present and future. Learn more at https://anthro.appstate.edu.
About the College of Arts and Sciences
The College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) at Appalachian State University is home to 17 academic departments, two centers and one residential college. These units span the humanities and the social, mathematical and natural sciences. CAS aims to develop a distinctive identity built upon our university's strengths, traditions and unique location. The college’s values lie not only in service to the university and local community, but through inspiring, training, educating and sustaining the development of its students as global citizens. More than 6,400 student majors are enrolled in the college. As the college is also largely responsible for implementing App State’s general education curriculum, it is heavily involved in the education of all students at the university, including those pursuing majors in other colleges. Learn more at https://cas.appstate.edu.
About Appalachian State University
As the premier public undergraduate institution in the Southeast, Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives. App State is one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System, with a national reputation for innovative teaching and opening access to a high-quality, affordable education for all. The university enrolls more than 21,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and 80 graduate majors at its Boone and Hickory campuses and through App State Online. Learn more at https://www.appstate.edu.