LAUREL SMITH, APR

OF COUNSEL

Laurel joined the firm in 1984 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Florida. In 1988, the Southwest Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association named her PR Professional of the Year, and in 1991, she achieved professional accreditation from FPRA. Her work on behalf of South Florida Water Management District, Bonita Bay Group and Southwest Florida International Airport were recognized with awards from FPRA and the Airport Operators Council International. An alumna of Leadership Lee County, Laurel served for 18 years on the board of United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades and Okeechobee, including terms as campaign chair and board chair. She is a trustee of the CREW Land & Water Trust and Alvin A. Dubin Alzheimer’s Resource Center and has been an FPRA member since 1986. After more than 30 years of stellar client service and counsel, she stepped back from day-to-day operations at the firm in 2016.

What’s on your bucket list? Visiting every national park in the USA. My husband, our dog and I have made a good start; we’ve camped in each of the lower 48 states in our Airstream and marvel at the vastness and gorgeousness of our country.

Describe yourself in a word. Curious. For PR practitioners, each new client or project provides the chance to learn something new. The process of researching a topic, understanding it and communicating its significance to a target audience was one of my favorite assignments. Interviewing was another, although I sometimes walked a fine line between curious and nosy.

Red or white wine? Vodka, please.

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