President Norman Smith brings a distinguished record of accomplishment to Dowling College, spanning a 43-year career in higher education, both in the U.S. and overseas that includes three presidencies and two Harvard University deanships. Of particular note is his status as the only living President Emeritus of Wagner College, where he is widely credited with having elevated the College to one of the top ranked in the Northeastern U.S. and achieving its citation as a TIME magazine ‘College of the Year.’ Before Wagner, he was at Harvard University, where he earned his doctorate and served as Asst. Dean of the Harvard University Graduate School of Education. He subsequently became Asst. Dean of Harvard’s newly opened John F. Kennedy School of Government, where he was honored to be among the inaugural officers recruited from within Harvard University. Following 14 accomplished years at Wagner College, President Smith moved on to become President of Richmond, The American International University in London, with two campuses in London and satellite campuses in Rome and Florence, Italy. Richmond was, during Smith’s tenure, the only university in the United Kingdom with dual accreditation, both British and American. President Smith then went on to become Founding Chancellor of what was to become the largest American International University in the world, to be located on the Egyptian Mediterranean Sea, west of Alexandria. While under construction, the project was terminated by the post-Mubarak government, following the Arab Spring revolution.
President Smith is the author of Selecting the Right College, an advisory book for high school students undertaking their college search. He also wrote From Bottom to TOP TIER in a Decade: The Wagner College Turnaround Years, which was cited by the Council of Independent Colleges as a “Book of Note for College Presidents and Academic Leaders.” Most recently, he co-authored What College Trustees Need to Know, with George Matthews, Chairman Emeritus of Northeastern University and Bryan Carlson, President of the Registry for College and University Presidents.
Awards and distinctions include the President’s Medal from New York University, presented in recognition of distinguished presidential leadership. He has been conferred honorary doctorates from Philadelphia University, Richmond University and Wagner College. He was also an inaugural inductee into Drexel University’s Alumni Hall of Fame, The Drexel 100 citing the top one hundred graduates from among over 20,000 alumni.
Dr. Smith has held full professor rank for over 25 years and has taught courses in business, marketing, organizational behavior and higher education leadership. He has chaired a number of college and university accreditation teams and has repeatedly been cited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education for accomplished presidential leadership. He also convened and hosted the Presidents and Provosts, while in London, of the world’s top ranked American International universities.