ODOT Civil Rights Transportation Symposium to feature Dr. Julian M. Earls, Gene Smith and the Central State Choir

Gene Smith

ODOT Civil Rights Transportation Symposium to feature
Dr. Julian M. Earls, Gene Smith and the Central State Choir

Don’t miss out on Ohio’s 2nd Annual Civil Rights Transportation Symposium, April 10-11.  Join us on April 10 to hear luncheon keynote speaker Dr. Julian M. Earls and April 11 to hear the keynote speaker Gene Smith, Director of Athletics, The Ohio State University along with a performance by the Central State Choir.

Dr. Julian M. Earls

Dr. Julian M. Earls is Executive in Residence at the Monte Ahuja College of Business at Cleveland State University in Ohio. He retired from the position of Director of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland (GRC). As Director of GRC he managed a budget of $740 million and a workforce of over 3000 personnel. In one year as Director of GRC, he awarded over $180 million in contracts to socioeconomic businesses and grants to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU’s), Tribal Colleges, and Hispanic Serving Institutions. He co-chaired the Science and Mathematics Education Policy Advisory Council (SAMEPAC) for the State of Ohio. SAMEPAC, upon appointment by the Governor of the State Of Ohio, produced a report defining initiatives to improve science and mathematics education in Ohio, grades P-K through 16. Also Dr. Earls is President of Entrepreneurial Engagement Ohio (EEO). EEO, in collaboration with the Ohio Academy of Science, was granted $5million for scholarships to Ohio High School Students who create projects in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) and Entrepreneurialism.

Dr. Earls has been married for over 54 years to his college sweetheart, Zenobia, a retired Cleveland Public School teacher. They have two sons, Julian Jr. and Gregory.

Gene Smith

At Ohio State, the 61-year old Smith oversees the nation’s most comprehensive and one of its most successful collegiate athletic programs.  The department sponsors 36 fully-funded varsity sports with more than 1000 student-athletes competing for Big Ten Conference and NCAA championships.

Smith has additional oversight responsibility for the Business Advancement division of Ohio State which includes:  Schottenstein Center, Nationwide Arena, Blackwell Hotel, Drake Union, Fawcett Center, and Trademark & Licensing.

Smith is known for outstanding fiscal controls.  The athletics department is completely self-supporting; it receives no university funds, tax dollars or student fees.  In fiscal year 2015-16, the department transferred nearly $39 million in assessments to the university, including more than $19 million in grant-in-aid reimbursement.  Both athletics and the university will derive benefit from the unprecedented $252 million partnership agreement signed with NIKE in 2016.

As a highly-recruited student-athlete and member of national championship teams as a college athlete, coach, and administrator, Smith is passionate about the well-being of student-athletes and the championship experience.

Under Smith’s leadership, the Ohio State athletics department has thrived, winning myriad conference and national, individual and team, athletic championships and awards.  In 2015, Forbes recognized the Ohio State Athletics Department as one of the ten best organizations to work for in sports.  Smith is credited with creating a collaborative culture within the department, as Forbes cited it for having “developed an incredible reputation in the industry for the positive way they treat their employees.”

Smith grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, and attended the University of Notre Dame on a football scholarship.  He played four years of football as a defensive end for the Irish and was a member of the 1973 Associated Press national championship team.

Smith received his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Notre Dame in 1977.  Following graduation, he joined the Notre Dame coaching staff under Dan Devine and remained in that capacity until 1981.  The 1977 Notre Dame team captured the undisputed national championship.

Gene and Sheila have four children:  Matt, Nicole, Lindsey and Summer, and seven grandchildren:  Marshall, Steele, Addison, Grayson, Tyson, Elijah and Maya.

Registration information for the Symposium is available online at http://www.dot.state.oh.us/ODOTCivilRights/Pages/registration.aspx

Published in OhioMBE – March 15, 2018 – pdf