Dr. R. Eugene Smith was associated with the University of Memphis from 1963 until
his retirement in 2000, serving in the administrations of five U of M presidents.
The most recent, Dr. Shirley Raines, calls him “legendary.”
|Dr. R. Eugene Smith
“He had a profound influence on the development of the University of Memphis for several
decades, beginning with the administration of Dr. Cecil C. Humphreys,” said Raines.
“He hired many of the people who have worked and still work for the Division of Business
Smith, a former vice president of Business and Finance, died in July.
“He was deeply rooted in University history, and was always loyal and generous,” said
current Business and Finance vice president David Zettergren. “Dr. Smith listened
to all employees and championed programs to show the University’s appreciation.”
Smith earned his bachelor’s degree in business at Middle Tennessee State University
in 1957. He came to work for the University in 1963 and eight years later became the
school’s Business and Finance vice president, a post he held until his retirement.
While working at Memphis, Smith earned a master’s degree, followed by a doctorate
from the University of Mississippi. He also combined the duties of an administrator
with those of a professor, teaching educational administration at the U of M, and
he served on numerous committees for the University, the Tennessee Board of Regents
and the Tennessee Higher Education Commission.