A dedicated and lifelong educator, Dr. Jack Smith has worked as a teacher, principal, curriculum director, local superintendent of schools, and for the Maryland State Department of Education. In each of these roles, he worked tirelessly to provide all students, regardless of background, with options and choices upon graduation. His expertise includes facilitating collaboration with school boards on behalf of students and communities, creating strong fiscal and operational systems at the district level, and promoting effective teaching and leadership in school buildings.
Jack’s career began as a teacher in Richland, Washington in 1980. He served there as Activities Director, Assistant Principal and Principal before relocating to Tokyo, Japan, to work as a principal at an international school. He returned to the United States in 1998 and joined Calvert County Public Schools (Maryland), where he served in numerous leadership roles and as Superintendent of Schools for seven years.
Jack joined the Maryland State Department of Education as the Chief Academic Officer for the Office of Teaching and Learning in August 2013. In September 2015, he was asked to be Interim State Superintendent. In these roles, he worked closely with the State Board of Education, local school systems, parents, businesses, teacher associations, institutions of higher education, and government agencies at both the state and national level to ensure high-quality teaching and learning for all students. He then served as Superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland for the next five years, overseeing a multi-billion-dollar budget, and guiding the school system through the COVID-19 pandemic as well as other complex and difficult situations. Additionally, he worked with staff to develop the Be Well 365 system to support student well being. He also designed and implemented an equity and achievement framework to increase access and opportunity and support learning for historically underserved populations.
Jack has been recognized with many awards and honors, including being named Maryland Superintendent of the Year in 2013 and receiving the 2010 Charge Agent Award from the Maryland State Department of Education’s Division of College and Career Readiness. He is a member of Leadership Maryland’s Class of 2011, and he has served on a variety of volunteer boards.
A graduate of Eastern Washington University, with a Bachelor’s degree in English and Communications and a Master’s degree in School Administration, Jack received his Ph.D. in Instructional Leadership for Changing Populations from Notre Dame of Maryland University. He and his wife, Gayle, have been married for over forty years and have five children and eight grandchildren.