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Ernestine Smith

The Assisi Foundation of Memphis, Inc.

Memphis, Tennessee


 Ernestine Smith

Ernestine Berry Smith is the Senior Programs Officer for The Assisi Foundation of Memphis, Inc., a healthcare legacy foundation formed from the assets of the sale of St. Francis Hospital. She has been with the Foundation since its inception in 1994. The Foundation has awarded over $200 million in grants in the Memphis, Tennessee area. Prior to joining the Foundation, Ms. Smith was an Executive Assistant and Paralegal at Glankler Brown, a law firm in Memphis. She is a late bloomer who earned her BBA in Accounting in 2001 and an MBA from the University of Memphis in 2009. She is a graduate of the 2002 Class of Leadership Memphis and the former Program Director for the Memphis Grant Makers Forum. Ms. Smith is a certified facilitator with the Institute for Global Ethics in Rushworth Kidder’s How Good People Make Tough Choices, ethical fitness training as well as Moral Courage. She is also a lifetime certified facilitator in Dr. Ruby Payne’s Bridges Out of Poverty, Getting Ahead in a Just Gettin’ By World, and Dr. Marcella Wilson’s Transition to Success, which assists persons in poverty with a comprehensive system of care and encouragement. For the last fourteen years, Ms. Smith has been the Programs Officer for the Before You Ask program at the Foundation, which educates local nonprofit executives. Three 12-session cohorts of Before You Ask are offered each year. She also facilitated Ready Faithful and Ready Neighbors, which were parts of Ready Shelby, an initiative of The Assisi Foundation of Memphis to better prepare Shelby County citizens in the event of an emergency. Ready Neighbors won the Neighborhoods USA award as the Neighborhood Program of the year in 2012. She is the former President of the Uncommon Threads Quilt Guild. She is a lifetime member of the Mid-South Fly Fishers and the Fly Fishers International. She was selected “Woman of the Year” of the Mid-South Fly Fishers twice and “Woman of the Year” for the Southern Council of Fly Fishers International. She is the former Treasurer of Mid-South Fly Fishers.