Smith & Howard Mourns Loss of Founding Partner Joseph Smith

Joseph Smith

Smith & Howard of Atlanta, an IPA 200 firm, has announced the passing of founding partner Joseph B. Smith, who was also a well-respected and esteemed business and civic leader in the city.

Smith’s leadership, character and commitment were integral to setting the foundation for the firm’s success, the firm announced.

“None of what Smith & Howard brings to our clients, people and community would be possible without what Joe so boldly set out to do nearly 50 years ago,” says MP Sean Taylor. “For me personally, I owe everything to Joe. Smith & Howard gave me a chance when many other firms would not. That chance led to me working at the firm for over 26 years, growing in my career and even meeting my wife. All I do for this firm is in large part my attempt to return the debt of gratitude I feel for what Joe and Smith & Howard extended to me – opportunity and trust. Joe was a true mentor and my friend, and I will truly miss my time with him.”

Former MP Jim Howard, close friend and co-founding partner with Smith, says, “I was at an industry conference and someone asked me if I were to write a book on how to build a lasting accounting firm, what would I title the book. Without hesitation, I answered that the title would simply be Joe Smith.”

Among other endearing qualities, Smith was known for his love of song. In the ’90s, he would entertain the team on late tax season evenings with Whitney Houston melodies. He and Howard sang duets at holiday parties – including a particularly dramatic rendition of “Moon River.”

It has been said that “The great use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it.” If the many hundreds of people who have enjoyed careers at Smith & Howard and have been able to provide for their own families as a result of our firm’s existence is any indication, Joe’s life was put to extraordinary use, the firm says.