February 24, 1968
Dr. Rufus Burr Smith will be installed as the first William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor Saturday, February 24 during the annual Founders Week Convocation in Knowles Memorial Chapel on the Rollins College Campus.
Dr. Smith, who was appointed Professor of Economics in the College's Roy E. Crummer School of Finance and Business Administration this fall, has a long background as a senior foreign service officer with the United States Government.
The William R. Kenan, Jr. Professorship was established at Rollins in June, 1967 with a $500,000 grant from the trustees of the charitable trust founded by the late North Carolina philanthropist.
The Kenan trustees left it within the province of the College to select both the professor and the department with which he is affiliated, saying "it is our wish to support a college teacher whose enthusiasm for learning, commitment to teaching and interest in students will make a notable contribution to the College's undergraduate community."
Smith teaches undergraduate courses in finance and banking and international economics, and directs seniors in independent study of international economic problems.
His background encompasses a brilliant career in teaching, research and public service. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Princeton, he received his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from New York University.
Prior to his appointment at Rollins, Dr. Smith was a Senior Foreign Service Inspector with the personal rank equivalent to Ambassador. He served with the U.S. State Department at missions in Mexico, Guatemala, Belgium, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries.
He was the U.S. representative to many international conferences, including the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East, the Colombo plan, SEATO and CENTO. Dr. Smith also served on the War Production Board, and Army-Navy Munitions Board and as coordinator of research to the Supreme Commander of Allied Powers in Japan.