Lee University’s Dr. David Smartt was awarded the U.S. Army Order of St. Martin of Tours Chaplaincy Award. This is a prestigious award given by the Army Chief of Chaplains honoring individuals who provide religious leadership and embody the legacy of St. Martin.
Dr. Smartt, an associate professor of business, received the award this past summer at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, home of the Army Chaplain Center and School where he served as commandant from May 2010- December 2011.
“I was deeply appreciative to receive this commendation from the Army Chief of Chaplains,” said Dr. Smartt. “This award is the first of its kind for the Army Chaplaincy and to be among the first few to receive it was very special.”
According to the legend, Martin of Tours was a fourth century soldier who, after giving his cape to a freezing beggar, was visited by Jesus Christ in a dream. Martin converted to Christianity and his cape became an object of veneration carried into battle by French kings. Eventually, all clergy affiliated with the military were called, in honor of the cape, “chapelains” and the house of worship came to be called “chapel.”
“The values Martin of Tours lived out set the right role model chaplains strive to emulate as we bring God to soldiers and soldiers to God,” said Dr. Smartt. “I am deeply honored to have had the opportunity to serve for God and country.”
Dr. Smartt joined Lee’s Department of Business (now School of Business) in 2012, where he teaches Principles of Management, Organizational Behavior, and Business Ethics, as well as Organizational Theory for the graduate program.
Prior to joining Lee’s faculty, Dr. Smartt served 29 years on active duty as a United States Army Chaplain, where he achieved the rank of Colonel. Among his many duties, Dr. Smartt served at the Pentagon as director of resource management on the staff of the Army Chief of Chaplains. He completed his active duty service as the 38th Commandant of the U.S. Army Chaplain Center and School, the Army’s training base for Chaplains and Religious Affairs Specialists.
Dr. Smartt is a graduate of Lee and of the Pentecostal Theological Seminary. He is also an ordained bishop in the Church of God. He earned a doctorate in management from Northcentral University and a master’s in business from Syracuse University.