Maurice Smith Named Chair of IEI National Advisory Board
The Institute for Emerging Issues (IEI) at NC State University is pleased to announce that Maurice Smith has been named the next chair of the IEI National Advisory Board. Smith is an attorney at M Smith Law and the recently retired president/CEO of Local Government Federal Credit Union (LGFCU) and Civic Federal Credit Union.
“The National Advisory Board is blessed with talented, smart, insightful and dedicated individuals,” said Smith. “Each discussion is a master’s class on how to discover, explore and address emerging issues. The Board brings unique approaches to each dialogue. I feel like our Board has eyes on the various issues that face our state. I am inspired to have a small role in our discussions.”
Smith retired in January 2023 after 43 years in the credit union industry. He began his career in financial services as a loan officer for State Employees’ Credit Union. Smith served in several capacities including vice president/city executive and vice president of marketing and training. He joined LGFCU in 1992 as the executive vice president and was promoted to president in 1999.
Smith earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and his Juris Doctorate from the North Carolina Central University School of Law.
“IEI is incredibly lucky to have Maurice lead the National Advisory Board,” said IEI Director Sarah Hall. “He brings a wealth of expertise and wisdom to the role, not to mention a real love for the state and its people.”
Smith replaces Jack Cecil, who served as board chair from 2014-2023.
Get to know IEI’s new National Advisory Board Chair Maurice Smith in the following Q&A:
Q: Tell us a bit about your background and how you came to be involved with IEI.
A: My involvement with IEI grew out of two points of interests. First, my career with the Local Government Federal Credit Union offered the opportunity to explore IEI’s work and align our institutional interests. The Credit Union invested in IEI because we shared a commitment to helping North Carolina communities thrive.
Secondly, my personal affection for IEI comes from my love for North Carolina. I am a lifelong citizen of the State. I have visited most of the State and delved into the local lifestyles that make our communities rich with local flair. I appreciate North Carolina even more when I look through the lens of someone who has traveled to other places. I have found no other place as special as our state, its people, and our beautiful landscapes.
Q: What interests or excites you the most about being on the National Advisory Board at IEI?
A: I am a firm believer in the power of conversation. I believe with collaborative discourse, we can find common ground to many of the big, hairy societal challenges that face us. Challenges seem to exasperate when parties stop exchanging ideas.
Here’s a little inside baseball. The National Advisory Board is blessed with talented, smart, insightful, and dedicated individuals. Each discussion is a master’s class on how to discover, explore and address emerging issues. The Board brings unique approaches to each dialogue. I feel like our Board has eyes on the various issues that face our State. I am inspired to have a small role in our discussions.
Q: What do you believe is the biggest emerging issue facing our state?
A: To my way of reasoning, I believe our biggest emerging issue is facilitating even-handed growth for all North Carolinians. One of the advantages North Carolina enjoys is the variety of typographies, industries, and communities. I believe diversity is a strength. However, one need not ponder too long to realize that progress is not evenly distributed. As a statewide community, there is bilateral dependency we have on each other. I imagine a North Carolina where we can expand on opportunities for every community.
Q: What kinds of things do you like to do for fun?
A: That’s a hard question. I like to work and find meaningful ways to contribute to society. After retiring from the Credit Union, I keep myself busy practicing law and consulting. But that’s probably not the answer you were seeking. For less stressful engagement, I like photography and traveling. When I can combine both, even better.