ICYMI: Innevator Spotlight on Meredith Smith

By Innevation Center 3 years ago
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Meredith Smith
Nevada Succeeds


Job Title
Policy Director

What does your company do?
Nevada Succeeds is an education policy non-profit. Our mission is to educate and mobilize Nevada businesses to lead the community in supporting our professional educators to maximize the effectiveness of all public schools through human talent optimization.

What is your role?
Officially, I essentially serve as the key liaison with state legislators, relevant offices within the state executive branch, and the other key stakeholders and advocacy groups in education policy. That said, Nevada Succeeds is a very small non-profit, so I also sometimes do things like order office supplies.

Where did you grow up and attend school?
Different states in the Southeast
University of Tennessee Knoxville
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

What brought you to The Innevation Center?
My work with Nevada Succeeds brought me to the Innevation Center.

What is your favorite local spot?
Le Thai
Springs Preserve
The Smith Center

Phone call or text message?
Either…actually both. Clarity in communication is essential.

Twitter or Facebook?
Facebook! I have had a Twitter account since 2008 but have tweeted only a handful of times.

Who would you most like to have dinner with (dead or alive)?
My grandmothers. Both my mother’s mother and my father’s mother passed away pretty unexpectedly a few years ago within a few weeks of one another. I feel I have lived so much life since I saw them last, and I would love to be able to ask them questions about adulthood and their lives that I never knew to ask them while they were alive.

If you could time travel, would you go forward or backward?
These types of questions are really hard for me because time traveling is not possible, and knowing that makes it nearly impossible for me to consider. That said, I would probably go back in time to apologize more quickly when I have said something I regret (or maybe even just not say it!). I do believe, though, that we all learn (or should learn) from our shortcomings and, if we allow them to, they ultimately make us better, more empathetic people.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
“This is as much your journey as it is his.”
I am a military spouse. My husband is in the Air Force, and it is often very difficult for military spouses to find meaningful work and employment. Early in our marriage, I asked another spouse what her best advice was for someone who also wanted to pursue a career alongside a service member spouse, and she told me to remember that this is as much my journey as it is my husband’s. I have always been a very driven person, but having someone who had already faced the challenges I was going to face remind me to remember my passions and interests was incredibly affirming. I cannot even count the number of times I have repeated this to myself when it has been difficult to see how my goals and aspirations would be able to mesh with the uncertainty of an active duty military lifestyle.

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