Wiliam “Chip” Smith

Chip Smith smiling in a suite and tie with a dark background
Wiliam (Chip) Smith
Biographical profile

Wiliam (Chip) Smith was born in Sparta, Tennessee (TN). He has Lived in TN his entire life and has lived in all 3 grand divisions of the state. he has been back in Nashville since November 1993.

He graduated from the University of Tennessee with a degree in Business Administration Management.

Smith joined the state government ranks in November 1993 as the Executive Assistant to the Commissioner of Economic and Community Development. Smith’s experience and bi-partisan appeal allowed him in 1994 to continue as the top assistant to the commissioner of economic and community development despite a change in state administrations.

His big opportunity came in 1995 when then Finance and Administration Commissioner Bob Corker (now former U.S. Senator Bob Corker) tapped Smith as his executive assistant. It was during this time that Smith navigated the halls of the capitol and the legislative plaza to promote the governor’s legislative agenda, including the state budget and TennCare. During his time with F&A, the TennCare program was under the auspices of the department and he saw first-hand the intricacies involved in TennCare. In addition, Smith gained experience in working with the various TennCare constituencies including providers, MCOs, BHOs, advocates and enrollees.
Smith served at the Department of Health as executive assistant and director of legislation for the commissioner. Smith’s duties involved the coordination of health related legislative matters including TennCare (which was transferred out of F&A back to Health) BHOs, MHMR issues and general health related issues.

Smith topped off his State service as Deputy Commissioner of the newly formed Department of Labor and Workforce Development in 1999. In 1998, Smith became the Chief Operating Officer of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Development. During this time, he was responsible for coordinating the state’s transition under the Federal Workforce Investment Act. Moreover, Smith was an integral part of the successful passage of legislation consolidating the departments of labor and employment security.

Since 2002, Smith has operated as a private, governmental consultant. In this capacity, Smith has represented numerous clients on state legislative issues. In addition, Smith has assisted clients with relationship building and strategic management relative to local and state government officials.

Smith broke into the government relations arena 30 years ago when he was hired as VP of Governmental Affairs and Education for the Greater Knoxville Chamber of Commerce.
Chip’s fellows’ sight him as an extremely driven person who communicates well and is adept at building consensus and creating win-win solutions.

He enjoies the fast pace, diverse daily activities which present themselves. Moreover, he cherishes the opportunity to be involved in efforts that make a distinct difference in people’s lives. He often takes on challenges which allow him to be a voice and advocate for the “voiceless.”

His dad has had a career in both public and private sector work. He served for 8 years as Commissioner of Education for the State of Tennessee. In addition, he has served in leadership roles in higher education having been the head of 2 different University of Tennessee campuses and as the head of the Tennessee Board of Regents. He also was appointed by President Bush to serve as the Executive Director of the National Assessment Governing Board which was responsible for the implementation of No Child Left Behind.

He wants to put more time and focus on making a positive difference in lives of other people.
His message to everyone is to: “Wake up everyday and be grateful. Take the blessings given and use them to be a difference maker. Always look for opportunities to brighten someone else’s day.