In Memoriam: Walter Addison Smith
Walter Addison Smith
Media Relations Office
March 27, 1998
The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution announces with great sorrow the death of Walter Addison Smith, Honorary WHOI Trustee and Corporation Member and longtime supporter and friend of the Institution, on March 24, 1998. Walter Smith was honored by WHOI in October of 1997 when he was given the Cecil H. Green Award to honor "an individual who has made outstanding contributions to oceanographic research at WHOI."
Certainly, that award personified Walter Smith, who served in many capacities during his 14-year affiliation with the Institution, among them Corporation Member, Development Committee Chairman, and member of the Capital Campaign Committee. Generous financial gifts from Walter and his wife, Hope Noyes Smith, established the Walter A. and Hope Noyes Smith Special Studies Fund in 1986, which supported a broad range of scientific and engineering activities, and in 1996 the Smiths established the Walter A. and Hope Noyes Smith Chair, currently held by Robert Beardsley of the Physical Oceanography Department. WHOI Director Bob Gagosian noted, "With respect to his very significant contributions, Walter Smith was a wonderful friend of the Institution. The organization is all the better for his long-standing devoted service. He will be greatly missed."
Walter Smith grew up in Buffalo, New York and received a bachelor's degree from Stanford University in 1942. He served in the US Navy and pursued graduate studies at Columbia University. His early career included a position as an underwriter for Lloyds of London and as a regional Operations Manager for Exxon before pursuing a career in commercial and industrial real estate and investment banking. He also served as a member of the PresidentÕs Circle of the National Academy of Sciences, and was a Director of Associates of Cape Cod.
He is survived by his wife, two sons, and three daughters. The family asks that memorial donations to honor his commitment to fostering excellence in ocean science research and education be sent to benefit the Walter A. and Hope Noyes Smith Fund at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, c/o Development Office, Fenno House, MS #40, Woods Hole, MA 02543.
Originally published: March 27, 1998