Brad D. Smith

Brad D. Smith | 2020 AACSB Influential Leader

Brad D.  Smith

Executive Chairman of the Board, Former President and CEO, Intuit Inc.

Honoree Year: 2020

Alma Mater:

Marshall University

Lewis College of Business

United States

Area of Impact:


In 1986, Brad Smith received a BBA degree from Marshall University with a major in marketing, followed by a master's degree in management from Aquinas College. Smith joined Intuit in 2003 and held a series of executive positions during a five-year rise through the company leading several of its major businesses. He served as Intuit’s president and CEO between 2008 and 2018. In 2019, he stepped down as CEO while staying on as the company's executive board chair. Under Smith’s leadership, Intuit’s customer count doubled to 50 million, and the earnings tripled while revenue doubled. Intuit has transformed from a North American desktop software company to a global, cloud-based product and platform company.

During Smith’s tenure as CEO, Intuit was consistently recognized as one of the world’s best places to work. Intuit continually placed on the Fortune Best Companies to Work For list in the United States, and was ranked the no. 1 by the Great Place to Work (GPTW) Institute in India, Singapore, and Canada in 2017. In 2016, Smith was ranked among the top CEOs in the United States by Fortune, and in 2018, he made the Forbes List of 10 Influential American Business Leaders.

Smith is passionate about education and economic empowerment in West Virginia and Appalachia, where he grew up, and supports programs that are strategic, enduring, and have a lasting impact on students. In November 2018, the transformative gift of 25 million USD from Smith and his wife, Alys, laid the foundation for reimagining the academic business curriculum, creating the Marshall University Brad D. Smith Schools of Business, and constructing a new academic building, the Brad D. Smith Center for Business and Innovation.

Smith wants to encourage game-changing ideas and inspire entrepreneurs to reinvent themselves in what he calls the “overlooked zip codes” of the state. The newly established Brad D. Smith Business Incubator will provide dedicated space to entrepreneurs in Marshall University’s Visual Arts Center in downtown Huntington, West Virginia. Accepted startups will get to work with and learn from other committed entrepreneurs and will receive support designed to accelerate growth and success through business support resources and services in the community that include physical space, capital, coaching, shared services, and networking connections.

Brad Smith has further impacted the Marshall University and Huntington community by introducing the concept of design thinking to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship. In April 2017, he was instrumental in bringing Intuit Inc. to campus for the first Innovation for Impact event, a monthlong program in which students and faculty experimented to create potential solutions for West Virginia’s most pressing problems.

Seven teams received training on innovation from Intuit leadership and worked to address three specific needs in West Virginia today: providing educational opportunities for youth in rural communities, battling substance abuse, and creating technology-based jobs. Award-winning actress Jennifer Garner, NFL football legend and Marshall alumnus Chad Pennington, and Smith coached and selected three teams during a finale event. The selected teams traveled to Silicon Valley and San Francisco, where they received a two-day immersive experience to explore top technology companies including the headquarters of Google, Apple, Facebook, and, of course, Intuit. These students gained hands-on experience collaborating with an Intuit Design for Delight team and received additional coaching from Smith.