Like so many who call Cary home, Jack Smith (District C) has roots that stretch far and wide. Jack grew up in Reading, PA and spent most of his adult years in and around Boston, but that’s actually later in his story. Jack was born in Furth, Germany.
Jack’s father was a US Army medic stationed in Germany as part of the occupying force that remained in Nuremburg after World War II; Jack’s mother was a volunteer at the same Army hospital.
Having a US father and a German mother meant that Jack had dual citizenship, which would have been fine if it weren’t for his wanting to serve his country. To become a US Army officer and obtain an Army commission, Jack could not keep his dual citizenship. The process required Jack to affirm allegiance to only one country by acquiring his US citizenship. He officially became a US Citizen on June 3, 1968.
Earning his US citizenship was one of the most important and impactful events in his life. Choosing to be American rather than simply being born that way contributed to Jack’s patriotism -- patriotism he proudly wears on his sleeve, both literally and figuratively. As a retired US Army Cavalry Captain, Jack frequently spearheads efforts and events that support and honor those who have fought and died for our freedoms.
Outside of his time in the military, Jack has always supported traditional American values, especially hard work. Whether as part of a large corporation or on his own as an entrepreneur, Jack works tirelessly.
In October 1986, Jack was promoted and transferred from Boston to Cary with Data General (now EMC), and it didn’t take long for him to fall in love with the community. He wanted to do everything he could for his new hometown. Believing that citizen involvement was and is a hallmark of the democratic process, Jack decided to run for Town Council to advocate for citizens and to assist the Town with developing a long-range perspective.
As an Executive Placement & Organizational Development professional, Jack helped companies improve their productivity by identifying critically important priorities to address and then finding them the ‘right person for the right job’. To do this successfully requires good analytical and listening skills coupled with in-depth problem-solving abilities – all excellent tools to call on as a Council member.
In 2014 Jack parlayed these skills in an entirely new direction and launched Custom Golf Travels, with a focus on Ireland, Scotland and South Africa, Jack helps golfers realize their 'bucket list' dreams.
Since the beginning of his public service over three decades ago, Jack’s four primary goals for Cary have been fundamentally the same: responsible growth, fiscal management, economic development and environmental stewardship.
Jack believes that Cary should grow in a responsible manner and not at the expense of current residents. Growth must pay for itself and not harm the community’s quality of life. The Town must protect neighborhoods, invest in parks and open space, and maintain high-quality recreational programs. At the same time, Cary taxes should remain as low as possible without forcing the Town to reduce its nationally recognized “best in class” services. This can be achieved through continued good planning -- striking the right balance between being business friendly and maintaining the community’s charm and appeal.
To sum it up, Jack is focused on keeping Cary clean and green, neighborhood-friendly, affordable, and well-planned.
Jack is proud of our award-winning greenway system and how it has brought neighborhoods closer together. He is proud of Cary’s efforts to curtail crime and keep citizens safe. He is proud that the Town leads the state in protecting the environment. He is proud of the diversity of our citizenry and how each person uniquely contributes to our quality of life.
As he serves Cary, his faith and his family provide him with the core values that guide Jack each day. He’s learned that while people may forget what you say and what you do, people never forget how you make them feel.
Place of Birth: Furth, Germany
Date of Birth:1947
Other placed (cities) lived: Reading, PA; Boston, MA; Norman, OK (college)
Number of Years as Cary Resident: Since 1986
Number of terms served on Town Council (including current):1989-1993 (first term); 1993-1997 (second term); 1997-2001 (third term); 2001-2005 (fourth term); 2005-2009 (fifth term); 2009-2013 (sixth term); 2013-2017 (seventh term); 2017 - 2021
Expiration Date of current term: December 2021
Other political offices and/or appointments held, now or in the past:RDU Noise Abatement Committee (Cary representative); Operations Committee (chair); Cary's Economic Development Commission (member and former Chair); Cary's representative on the Wake County Intergovernmental Liaison Committee; Cary's representative to the Wake County Economic Development Commission; Cary’s Liaison to the Greater Raleigh Convention & Visitors Bureau
Current Employer: Custom Golf Travels, an exclusive affiliate of Lazy Lizard Travel, LLC
Current Occupation: Designing International Custom Golf Packages to Ireland, Scotland and South Africa
Other occupations or previous employers of interest: Organizational Capability Services, LLC (founder); AIG; Data General (now EMC); Memorex
Branch of Service: US Army
Highest Rank Attained: Captain
Primary service role: Cavalry Troop Commander
Honors, medals: Viet Nam era veteran
Tours of duty: 1
Total years served: 11 (includes Active, Reserve & National Guard)
Stations: Ft. Sill, OK; Ft. Benning, GA; Ft. Knox, KY; Ft. Drum, NY
Highest grade completed: College graduate
Degree(s) obtained: BA
School(s) attended: University of Oklahoma
Primary areas of study: Psychology, Sociology
Professional licenses, certifications: C.C.P. (Certified Compensation Professional)
Marital Status: Married to Bridget Smith
Number of children: 2
Number of school-age children: 0
Number of grandchildren (total): 4
Number of grandchildren (school-age): 4
Church, religious denomination: St. Michael's; Catholic
Current Civic Club Membership(s): American Legion Post 67; Sister Cities Association of Cary
Current Charitable Work: Organ Donation Foundation (Speaker); 2008 Chair, RTP Annual Kidney Walk
Current Party Affiliation: Republican
Awards, Honors, Recognitions
Professional/Occupational: Business Leader Magazine, five-time “Impact 100" Recipient (1996-2001); Leadership Triangle Fellow (2002); Washington D.C. - Inducted into the Sister Cities International Local Government Leadership Circle (2006); American Legion Post 67, Andy Green Courage Award (2008); Institute of Political Leadership Fellow (2009); Cary Citizen of the Year Award (2010); Cary Citizen Diplomacy Award (2012)