The Rev. Kenneth Lee Smith (Class of 1987) died peacefully on November 12, 2014, after a brief illness at the age of 79. Ken is survived by his cherished wife, Portia (née Miles); son Craig (Cindy); step-daughter Elizabeth; granddaughters Laura (Nick) and Heather (Ben); and great-grandchildren, Reese, Creighton, Solomon, Abram and Ezra. Ken was preceded in death by his daughter, Karen. Born in Ashtabula, Ohio, to James Scott and Leta Smith, Smith graduated from the Fisher School of Business at Ohio State University and served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force. Upon his return home, he went into banking, where he retired as CEO of New Albany Savings and Loan. Answering a new calling, he received his M.Div. from The General Theological Seminary in 1987 and was ordained in the New England Conference of the United Methodist Church, where he served seven churches and was chair of the General Commission on Religion and Race for the entire New England Conference.
Upon retiring from the ministry, Smith received a Maine legislative citation for his contributions to the state and for negotiating legislation to keep toxic waste out of Maine. He and his wife returned to Cleveland after 50 years because of their love for the Cleveland Orchestra and Art Museum. The family is grateful for the competence of the Cleveland Clinic and for the respect and dignity that was afforded Ken. A memorial service was held at Disciples Christian Church, Cleveland Heights, Ohio on November 21, 2014.