Smith benefits university as Staff Council chair
Mississippi State University employs around 3,500 staff members. With so many varied positions, a governing body exists for the purpose of advising the university president and other administrators on matters involving MSU's staff.
Assistant Dean of Students Cade Smith serves as the 2012 chair of Staff Council. A native of Grenada, Miss., Smith completed his undergraduate degree in biology at Rhodes College in 1991, followed by a master of science at the University of Arkansas in 1996. He earned his doctorate from Mississippi State in 2002 in plant and soil sciences.
Smith, who is also the director of the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement, was nominated to serve on Staff Council in 2010 and was elected as vice chair in 2011.
“MSU’s Staff Council fulfills our mission by enhancing communication between staff and the administration with our annual staff satisfaction survey, and by providing forums for staff to discuss matters affecting them,” Smith said. “We also evaluate proposed policies and procedures, recommend new policies and procedures, and recommend changes to existing ones.”
As the chair of the Staff Council, Smith’s duty is to work diligently to ensure that the council strives for excellence in fulfilling all aspects of its mission. Smith cites university president, Dr. Mark Keenum, as his inspiration for becoming involved with Staff Council.
“Dr. Keenum’s administration is notable for embracing the shared governance model for university leadership,” he stated. “This means that the Faculty Senate, Student Association and Staff Council have all played a very active role in leading this university.”
Smith says he has seen Staff Council evolve since he joined in 2010, and the organization has become more effective in serving the needs of the staff at MSU. In 2011, then-chair Amanda Bell organized a retreat for the Staff Council to evaluate a new strategic plan. Smith says the most valuable experience as chair of Staff Council has been implementing this strategic plan.
“The retreat resulted in Staff Council having a greater clarity of its defined roles, the constitution and bylaws, and the overall structure of the organization,” said Smith.
Smith’s wife, Becky, is an economist in the Department of Agricultural Economics, and has previously worked in the College of Business as part of her 10-year career at MSU. Smith has two children, Hunter and Alex, and three stepchildren: Carter Campbell, John Geoffrey Campbell and Wendy Campbell. Smith is an avid runner and attends weekly gatherings with Boardtown Runners, Starkville’s local running club.
The MSU Alumni Association thanks Cade Smith and all those serving on the Staff Council for their service and dedication to the staff and people of Mississippi State University.