Randall D. Smith, President

In August 2009, Randall Smith joined the Missouri School of Journalism as the first Donald W. Reynolds Endowed Chair in Business Journalism. Prior to that, he spent 30 years at The Kansas City Star, working on both the news and business sides. He started as a copy editor, rising to business editor and deputy managing editor, and most recently, to director of strategic development.

Randy is a former president of the Society of American Business Writers and Editors (SABEW) and a recipient of the organization’s Distinguished Achievement Award. He played a major role in conceiving the idea and raising the money for the School’s SABEW endowed chair.

He is the president and first non-family member of the board of the Alfred and Jean Friendly Foundation. He wrote the book A Kenyan Journey and has lectured in classes in China, Africa and the U.S.

Throughout his career Randy Smith has helped promote young minority journalists, and he played a key role in getting Knight Ridder newspapers to adopt the Rotating Internship Program, which placed more than 250 journalists in newspapers during its 20-year run.

As an editor, Randy worked with award-winning newsroom teams that earned the profession’s top awards and honors. One won a Pulitzer Prize in 1982 for coverage of the Kansas City Hyatt Hotel skywalks disaster in July 1981. Other staff recognitions include a Sigma Delta Chi award, an Eppy award, a Philip Meyer Award, 12 Missouri Press Association Gold Cups and a Nancy Dickerson Whitehead Award.

He graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism in 1974 and received the Mizzou Alumni Association’s highest recognition, the Faculty-Alumni Award, in 2005.

Randy and his wife Joyce have three children.


Donald W. Reynolds Endowed Chair in Business Journalism
The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation awarded the Missouri School of Journalism a $2 million grant to establish the Donald W. Reynolds Endowed Chair in Business Journalism in 2008. The chair is the second in business journalism at the School, joining the Society of American Business Editors and Writers Chair, established in 2000. The Reynolds Chair works with other Missouri faculty to increase undergraduate and master’s course offerings at the School. The chair also works with journalism professionals and Reynolds Business Journalism Chairs at other universities to offer advanced training in business and financial journalism for working journalists. Working with other faculty and staff of Missouri’s Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute, the Reynolds Chair helps develop, test and write about new digital models of journalism and advertising.

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