Chris Smith represents the Ft. Lauderdale area in the Florida State Senate. He has led the initiatives for election law and stand your ground law reform, and countless other improvements needed within the state of Florida. His leadership serves as an example for others seeking to serve across the state.
Smith is currently serving his second term as State Senator representing District 29, a district which spans Broward and Palm Beach counties.
Chris Smith’s long-standing career of service began at a young age. He spent his formative years actively involved in many youth organizations including the Fort Lauderdale Branch of the National Association For The Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Youth Council, ascending to the position of president. As president, he began the Annual Christmas Toy Giveaway, providing toys to underprivileged children throughout Broward County.
Smith holds degrees from Johnson C. Smith University (JCSU) in Charlotte, North Carolina and Florida State University College of Law. A Fort Lauderdale native, Smith lives in Broward County, Florida with his wife Desorae Giles and their two sons Christopher and Christian.
As an attorney with the firm Johnson, Anselmo, Murdoch, Burke & George, P.A., Smith specializes in the practice of civil trial, municipal law and civil rights litigation.
Serving Florida’s Families
- In 1995, Smith was appointed by the City of Fort Lauderdale City Commission to be the youngest member of the City’s Planning and Zoning Board.
- In 1998, he was elected to the Florida House of Representatives for District 93, representing the cities of Fort Lauderdale, Pompano Beach, Oakland Park and Tamarac.
- He was reelected unopposed for 2 consecutive terms, 2000 and 2002; during which he served on various committees.
- He has served as the Democratic House Leader and Democratic Leader Pro Tempore.
- In 2003, Smith was unanimously selected to be the Democratic House Leader for the Democratic Party, serving from 2004-06. His duties included fund raising nationwide for the Democratic Party, candidate recruitment and developing democratic policy for the state. In fact, he raised more funds than anyone in the history of the party. Although a partisan position, Smith understands that the political process requires compromise — this understanding has led him to be well-respected on both sides of the aisle.
- He was elected to the Florida Senate District 29 in 2008, and previously served as Democrat Minority Leader in 2014
A Champion for the Issues that Matter
- Senator Smith is calling on the Florida legislature to “#HearTheBills” amending the controversial Florida “Stand Your Ground” laws.
- He led the charge to reform the elections process in Florida after the Election of 2000. He helped author the election reform bill that is now law in Florida and is being used as a model nationwide.
- He has lectured around the country regarding the Florida electoral process, including appearances on Fox News, CNN and C-SPAN. He was also a speaker at the International Non-Violence Conference in Durban, South Africa.
Awards & Achievements
- In 1990, he was selected by the United States State Department as the only undergraduate on the National Model United Nations Team. With this team he traveled to Moscow, Russia, to study and compete in the International Model United Nations.
- In 1994, he traveled to Washington, D.C., to compete in the National Security Law Moot Court Competition at George Washington University. After three days of arguing in front of some of the top judges in the country, he and his partner were named Moot Court National Champions.
- He has received many awards including, Citizen of Year Award from the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (FACDL) recognized me as a Legislative Champion of Justice, Legislator of the Year from the American Jewish Congress,Humanitarian Award from the Young Democrats and many more.
- The Miami Herald and the Sun Sentinel consistently give Smith high marks as an effective leader in legislature.
- Citizen of Year Award from the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity
- Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (FACDL) recognized Smith as a Legislative Champion of Justice
- Legislator of the Year from the American Jewish Congress
- Humanitarian Award from the Young Democrats