Crisis Management Expert & Inspiration for the Hit TV Show Scandal
Judy A. Smith is the founder and President of Smith & Company, a leading strategic advisory firm with offices in Washington D.C., Los Angeles and New York. Over the last 25 years, Ms. Smith has brought her unique combination of communication skills, media savvy, legal and political acumen to clients facing a wide array of issues and challenges throughout the United States and abroad.
Ms. Smith honed her skills through her experiences with some of the most historic and sensational events of our time, including the Iran Contra investigation, the prosecution of former Washington D.C. Mayor Marion Barry, the 1991 Gulf War, the Los Angeles riots, the President Clinton scandal involving Monica Lewinsky, the congressional inquiry of Enron, the General Petraeus CIA scandal and the Sony Corporation hacking crisis.
Perhaps best known in media circles for her expertise as a crisis management advisor, Ms. Smith has served as a consultant for a host of high profile, celebrity and entertainment clients over the course of her career including, but not limited to, Monica Lewinsky, Senator Craig from Idaho, Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr., actor Wesley Snipes and the family of Chandra Levy.
In addition to her work as a communications advisor during high profile engagements, Ms. Smith also serves as a counselor to Fortune 500 corporations and has provided strategic advice on a variety of corporate communications issues such as mergers and acquisitions, product recalls, intellectual property litigation, corporate positioning, diversity and other challenges. She has assisted leading companies such as BellSouth, Union Pacific, Nextel, United Healthcare, Americhoice, Wal-Mart, Radio-One Inc., Waste Management Corporation, and American International Group, Inc. (AIG) on a range of corporate, investor, and public relations matters.
A former federal prosecutor, Ms. Smith also served in the White House as Deputy Press Secretary to President George H. W. Bush. Prior to her legal career, Ms. Smith worked as a writer and public affairs specialist for several publications and private organizations headquartered in Washington, D.C. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Relations from Boston University and graduated from the American University Washington College of Law where she was the first African-American woman to serve as Executive Editor of the Law Review.
Ms. Smith has been featured in numerous national publications including: the Washington Post, National Journal, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Fortune, Fast Company. Smith is an experienced and sought-after commentator as a crisis management expert. She frequently appears on major television networks such as CNN, MSNBC, FOX News, NBC, ABC, and CBS. Ms. Smith also speaks at events throughout the year before conference audiences, corporate boards, academic institutions, and other professional groups.
As a result of her wide ranging and ground breaking career, Shonda Rhimes, creator of ABC’s hit television dramas Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice, developed a television drama about the world of crisis management inspired by Ms. Smith. The hit TV series entitled, Scandal, revolved around the life and work of a professional fixer. Ms. Smith served as Co- Executive Producer of the project and provided insight and technical expertise on crisis management issues.
Ms. Smith is the author of the book, Good Self, Bad Self, published by Free Press, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, Inc. She has received numerous communications and leadership awards and is active in community service.