Steven Escar Smith is dean of libraries at the University of Tennessee’s flagship campus in Knoxville. He was formerly associate dean for collections, services, and advancement at Texas A&M University Libraries, where he oversaw collections, technical services, special collections and archives, preservation, records management, and three branch libraries as well as public services. He serves in numerous professional library and higher education organizations. He recently concluded service on the board of the Association of Research Libraries. He has been a member of the Tennessee Advisory Council on Libraries for more than six years, and he previously served on the board of the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries, as board member and secretary for Tenn-Share, as chair of the Digital Preservation Network pricing task force, and on the board of the Texas Digital Library. He has served as a reviewer for IMLS grants, for SACS accreditation, and on the editorial boards for the TAMU Press, the UT Press, and various scholarly journals. Under his leadership and in partnership with Tenn-Share and the State Library, the UT Libraries has become the state service hub for DPLA.
He holds adjunct appointments in the School of Information Sciences and the Department of English at the University of Tennessee, and previously held adjunct graduate faculty appointments in the Department of English at TAMU and in the School of Information and Library Sciences at the University of North Texas.
Smith earned his BA, MA, and MLS from the University of South Carolina, and his PhD from Texas A&M University. He is a graduate of the first class of ARL Leadership Fellows, the University of Tennessee Leadership Institute, and the Disney Institute professional development programs in Quality Service and Leadership Excellence.