Biographical Sketch for Tommy Smith
Dr. L. Thomas (Tommy) Smith, Jr. is vice president for academic affairs/provost at Johnson University, Knoxville, Tennessee. A native of Carter County, Tennessee, he is a graduate of Johnson University (B.A., 1978), Emmanuel Christian Seminary (M.A.R., 1986), and the University of Tennessee (Ph.D., 1990). He has served as professor of history and theology at Johnson University (formerly Johnson Bible College) since 1989, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences (2012-2014), and was appointed provost in October 2014. Tommy has held associate, youth, and worship ministries in Knoxville and Valley Forge, Tennessee, and preaching ministries in Jonesborough, Kingston, Embreeville, Knoxville, and Farragut, Tennessee. He is the author of Above Every Other Desire: A Centennial History of Johnson Bible College (1992), and has contributed essays, articles and book reviews to various publications. In addition to his administrative and teaching responsibilities, Tommy keeps an active speaking schedule including revivals, workshops, retreats, and seminars, and has conducted short-term mission trips to Haiti, Honduras, China, and Ukraine. He has engaged in interim preaching ministries in Knoxville, Rockwood, Morristown, Farragut, Chattanooga, and Seymour, Tennessee, seeking to assist churches during important transitional periods.
During his tenure as provost Johnson University received reaffirmation of accreditation from SACSCOC, including approval and successful implementation of the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), programmatic accreditation of the Bible and congregational ministry programs from ABHE, and CACREP accreditation for the graduate counseling program. He has overseen the addition of five new certificate programs, four new associates degrees, eleven bachelors programs, and three graduate programs. Under his leadership Johnson has expanded its offerings to include academic programs in four ExtendEd sites (Indianapolis, Louisville, Orlando, and downtown Knoxville), developed the academic strategic plan for the Florida campus, and very successfully completed the first year of the Future of Hope theology institute.
Tommy and his wife, Deborah, live near the campus of Johnson University in the Kimberlin Heights community and have two married sons, Jacob and Joshua, and six grandchildren. They attend the Crossings Knoxville church.