William is a fifth generation Lauderdale County resident and former Lauderdale County Commissioner. He was born and raised in Florence, Alabama. Smith is a product of the Florence City School System having attended Gilbert, Powell, Appleby Junior High, and Bradshaw High School. He is a graduate of the University of North Alabama receiving both his Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) and Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degrees.
Throughout his youth and during college, William worked with his family in their family owned small business. He served as a substitute teacher in the Florence City School system for two years while working on his M.B.A. at the University of North Alabama.
Smith is a 1992 graduate of Cumberland School of Law of Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. At Cumberland, he received the AM JUR Book Award for earning the highest grade in Criminal Procedure I, served on the Trial Advocacy Board, and chaired the Cordell Hull Speakers Forum. He also studied comparative American and German law as part of the Comparative Law Program at the University of Heidelberg in Heidelberg, Germany.
After law school, William published the Shoals Church Directory while awaiting results of his bar exam before starting his law practice. The Shoals Church Directory was freely supplied to new college students, new residents to the area, and potential new area businesses as a recruitment tool.
William would later serve as President of the McKinley Young Lawyers of the Shoals where he led the effort to have the United States Post Office and Courthouse in Florence named the Justice John McKinley Federal Building after the late U. S. Supreme Court Justice and Florence founder John McKinley. Smith was also successful in securing funding to place an Alabama Legal Milestone Marker in front of the federal courthouse to memorialize McKinley's achievements.
Along with running a successful law practice, Smith is a civic leader. Actively involved with many local civic organizations and activities, William is the former President of the University of North Alabama National Alumni Association and former Vice President of the UNA Sportsman Club, the school's sole athletic fundraising organization. He is a member of the Florence Rotary Club (Paul Harris Fellow 2008), and a former board member of the YMCA of the Shoals, Music Preservation Society (W. C. Handy Festival), and Rape Response of Northwest Alabama. William attends Highland Baptist Church where he is a Sunday School teacher and youth basketball coach.
In his spare time, Smith’s hobbies include history, reading, and writing. He is a founding member of the T.S. Stribling Committee created to honor, memorialize, and celebrate the late Pulitzer Prize winning writer and Florence resident, T.S. Stribling. Smith and the committee established an annual event honoring Stribling and built the two largest repositories of Stribling writings located at UNA’s Collier Library and the Florence Public Library.
Smith’s interest in local history has led him to serve on the Florence Historical Board and several terms as President of the Tennessee Valley Historical Society. William is the author of Leo’s Tale: University of North Alabama Trivia. His articles have appeared in the Alabama Lawyer, Alabama Arts, First Draft, and the Times Daily. He has written articles and presented programs on T.S. Stribling, the Jackson Military Road, and United States Supreme Court Justice John McKinley.
Alabama Bar Rules require the following: " No representation is made that the quality of legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers."