Dr. Smith joined the School of Nursing faculty as Assistant Professor in 2001 being named the Kay K. Chitty Professor. In this position, she taught in the undergraduate and graduate programs and practiced as a Family Nurse Practitioner two days a week in community clinics serving vulnerable populations. She was appointed Coordinator of the Family Nurse Practitioner Concentration in 2005 and was promoted to UC Foundation Associate Professor in 2009.  In 2012, she assumed the position of Interim Director of the School of Nursing and was named the permanent director in January 2014. In 2016 she was promoted to Professor. Her primary teaching responsibilities are in the graduate programs, primarily the FNP concentration. She maintains national certification and continues to engage in faculty practice at Student Health Services at UTC where she precepts Family Nurse Practitioner Students.


Dr. Smith has published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at several national conferences. She has been recognized as a Leader Among Our Midst by the Chattanooga Women’s Leadership Institute, has received the 2007 Distinguished Alumna Award at Girls Preparatory School, the Boys and Girls Club Dedicated to Youth Service Award and the Key Stone Award and the Girls’ Inc. Unbought and Unbossed Award. She was also named a Woman of Distinction by the American Lung Association.  She has served on many boards in the Chattanooga area and is currently the chair of the Board of Trustees at Girls Preparatory School. At UTC, she has received the CHEPS Outstanding Service and Outreach Awards, and the Outstanding Faculty Award. She was named the College of Nursing Top 60 Alums for East Tennessee State University. She has been awarded more than $6 million in HRSA funded grants. The most current grant addresses obesity across the lifespan and is an interprofessional effort.