Brad Smith ’82, ’83, ‘85 Receives the 2023 Distinguished Service Award
Accomplished design professional. Dedicated civic volunteer. Inspiring mentor and alumnus.
Brad Smith, a Spartanburg native and Greenville resident, is a three-time Clemson graduate whose impact on his alma mater can be seen, literally, all over campus – and beyond. With bachelor’s degrees in design (1982), building science and management (1983) and architecture (1985), he has become one of the most prominent architects in South Carolina.
As principal-in-charge of Clemson projects ranging from the Lee Hall restoration, renovation and addition to new buildings such as the Larry B. Penley Jr. Golf Facility, he has helped to imagine and design highly acclaimed environments that inspire Clemson students, faculty and staff to excel.
Brad, a member of the American Institute of Architects, is a founding principal of McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture, which has eight offices in South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia. His role includes staff development, firm culture building and internal communications. A registered architect in 38 states, he has a diverse background of experience in higher education, healthcare, commercial, civic and community projects.
He has overseen new facilities or renovations for AnMed Health, the Prisma Health System, the Medical University of South Carolina and the University of South Carolina School of Medicine at Greenville. He was principal-in-charge for Aiken County’s new government office complex; the planning and design for multiple YMCA facilities; conference room additions and master planning for the Columbia Convention Center; and hundreds of other community, church, public and private projects.
As a Fellow in the Riley Institute’s Diversity Leadership Initiative, he helped lead a program that partnered with local organizations to deliver financial literacy for children in grades 4–6. His leadership and advocacy for United Way of Greenville County initiatives led to McMillan Pazdan Smith being named 2021’s “Rising Star Engagement” recipient, with 100-percent firm wide participation in food drives, school tools, virtual seminars and community improvement projects. Other organizations benefiting from his service include the Hospice House of Greenville, the Cancer Society of Greenville County, the Poinsett Club and the Caine Halter Family Branch of the YMCA.
He is past chairman and a former Board member of South Carolina’s State Board of Architectural Examiners and is past Chairman of the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards’ Professional Conduct Committee. He also serves on the Greenville Construction and Maintenance Board of Adjustments and Appeals.
For Clemson, Brad is a current member and past president of the Clemson Architectural Foundation and a past member of the Clemson Alumni Association’s board of directors. He was instrumental in establishing an endowment for the School of Architecture that provides scholarships, named in honor of Professor Emeritus John Jacques, and supports diversity initiatives. He and his firm also provide a fellowship and assistance for students who want to pursue research and scholarship related to the intersection of human health, healthcare and architecture while working for the firm over the summer.
He is a member of the Greenville Clemson Luncheon Club and regularly represents McMillan Pazdan Smith in Clemson career fairs. In 2013, he participated in events marking the 40th anniversary of Clemson’s Charles E. Daniel Center for Building Research and Urban Studies in Genoa, Italy. He is returning to Genoa again this year to celebrate the 50th anniversary.
Brad and his wife, Lyle, have two children: daughter Caroline and son Brad Jr., who is a 2020 Clemson graduate.
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