Stephen Smith was born and raised in Sherwood Forest, but Stephen sees himself as less of a Robin Hood and more of a Billy Elliot. The region had many working class mining villages ...read more
Stephen Smith was born and raised in Sherwood Forest, but Stephen sees himself as less of a Robin Hood and more of a Billy Elliot. The region had many working class mining villages where he grew up as someone with big dreams.
To understand Stephen is to embrace his duality. He’s a theologian who evangelizes about interactive technology. He immerses himself in the heavy academic pursuit of genocide research, but can also be seen riding his scooter through the office.
"Serious goals should still be fun."
A scholar who holds a UNESCO chair, Stephen is also an accomplished baker. As a young man, he started his own bakery in England, which he sold before creating the UK National Holocaust Center and the Kigali Genocide Center in Rwanda — endeavors that brought him regal recognition as a Member of the Order of the British Empire. That said, he leapt the pond to USC Shoah Foundation, and not even the Queen could keep him from becoming an American Citizen in 2017.
A year ago, Stephen suffered a life-threatening heart attack, then a few months later, finished a half marathon. Refocused, he turned back to his passion for improving the world creating greater connectivity between memory and story. He walks the walk when he says,
"Everyone has a story to tell!"
Stephen D. Smith, Professor of Religion & Director of the USC Shoah Foundation (EG12)