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Timothy Smith

Emeritus Professor

Prof. Timothy D. Smith joined the School of Journalism and Mass Communication faculty at Kent State University in 1986 after working for 19 years for the Akron Beacon Journal, leaving as managing editor. He has also worked for the Columbus Dispatch, the Painesville Telegraph and United Press International.

He has bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from Ohio State University and a law degree from the University of Akron. He is the founder and director of the Ohio Center for Privacy and the First Amendment, which specializes in access-to-government issues, headquartered at KSU.

In 1991, while on leave from the university, he served as a law clerk for now-retired Ohio Supreme Court Justice Craig Wright. In June 1991, he was named acting director of the School, a post he held until June 1994, when he returned to teaching reporting and media law courses. He has served as adviser to the Daily Kent Stater, the student newspaper, and is now legal adviser for all student media.

In addition to his teaching duties, Smith serves as a newspaper consultant, an expert witness in media law cases and as a lecturer on media relations, libel, invasion of privacy and public records issues. He is a member of the American and Ohio State bar associations and a founding member of the National Freedom of Information Coalition.

In 1996, he was given the John S. Knight award for excellence in the service of journalism by the Buckeye Chapter of the Society for Professional Journalists. In 1997, he was selected as a fellow of the American Society of Newspaper Editors Journalism Excellence program, a summer newspaper residency for journalism professors. In 2000, he was one of three faculty members to receive the Distinguished Teaching Award from the Kent State University Alumni Association and the University Foundation. He was on Professional Development Leave in Fall 2003, working in the Portage County Public Defenders Office.

Smith and his wife, Jane, an Akron school teacher, have three grown children, Randall, Rachel and Bryan.

Research Areas
  • Libel
  • Privacy
  • Access
  • Defamation
Timothy Smith
School of Journalism and Mass Communication

MT 3-4:30 PM
W 10-12 PM
and by appointment