Chief Development Officer: Shirley Smith

Shirley A. Smith is the Chief Development Officer for Community Legal Aid. She helps the organization build a sustainable future by directly engaging with community members whose passion aligns with Legal Aid’s mission. 


Shirley began her career with Legal Aid in 2022 and has an extensive background in the area of development and fundraising. She has worked with other non-profits such as Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, United Way of Summit County, and United Way of Greater Dayton. Prior to her work in the nonprofit sector, Shirley worked in the banking industry as a retail bank manager, Private Bank Relationship Manager, Trust and Estate Administrator I, and mortgage origination loan officer.


Outside of her role at Legal Aid, her current and previous community service engagements include:

  • Curated Storefront, President, Board of Directors

  • ATHENA Akron, Inc., Past President, Board of Directors

  • Akron Civic Theater, Past Board of Directors

  • Akron Art Museum – Investment Committee

  • Women’s Network Leadership Institute - WNLI 

  • YWCA Dayton, Past Board of Directors

  • Artemis Center for Alternatives to Domestic Violence, Board of Directors 

  • Leadership Akron Signature Class -  #Resilient 37

  • AFP NEO - Association of Fundraising Professionals Northeast Ohio


Shirley enjoys walking, jogging and hiking in the metro parks with friends. She likes to read good books which expand cultural and self-knowledge and she is also a big fan of live theater and visual art.


Shirley holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Dayton where she majored in finance and a Master of Management degree from Antioch McGregor University. She has retained her Certified Fundraising Executive, CFRE designation since 2012.

Last updated on .

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