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UT Center for Ethics Awards Smith

Published: November 24, 2003

The 2003 Tampa Bay Ethics Award was presented to William Reece Smith Jr. last October at the 13th annual Tampa Bay Ethics Award Breakfast in the Fletcher Lounge.


For the past several years, the UT Center for Ethics has recognized an individual whose personal, business and professional life reflects those classical ethical standards that contribute to all that is good in our society — responsibility, respect, trustworthiness, caring, justice and citizenship.


According to his nomination by Kathleen S. McLeroy of Carlton Fields, P.A., Reece Smith has served his community, state and country with distinction. The Tampa attorney is the only American lawyer to have served as president of a local, state, national, and international bar association.


He won the American Bar Association’s Gold Medal for his efforts to preserve funding for the Legal Services Corporation and his nationwide effort to increase the amount of pro bono legal work performed by members of the bar. He also made the lead gift to Bay Area Legal Services to create an endowment fund to provide local legal services to the poor.


Smith’s commitment to ethics also has been exhibited by his efforts to enhance professional ideals and legal ethics in the practice of law. He served for several years on the Professionalism Committee of The Florida Bar, published several articles, and chaired a committee that published a two-volume work on the subject. He holds the position of Distinguished Professional Lecturer at Stetson University College of Law, where he has taught Professional Responsibility (Legal Ethics) since 1991.


Smith has numerous involvements in both the community and education, and received the Civitan Club’s award as Tampa’s Outstanding Citizen in 1986. He is recognized and respected for excellence in his profession and for his lifelong ethical conduct, as well as his selfless dedication to equal access to justice.

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