This week, Ira spoke with Linda Smith.
Linda Smith, who Las Vegans know as the fundraising pillar of Opportunity Village for nearly 40 years, is the author of “Unwanted”: How a Mother Learned to Turn Shame, Grief and Fear into Purpose, Passion and Empowerment.”
In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Smith talks about the challenges she faced growing up; the additional long-term obstacles she faced with her disabled son, Christopher; how she ended up in Las Vegas; fwhy she had to fight to keep her son in the United States; the lessons she learned about persistence and attitude; and how she was able to focus on fundraising over the decades.
Author, speaker and non-profit consultant, Smith is recognized as a fundraising icon within the Las Vegas community and across the globe. After 38 years of leading one of the largest and well-known non-profit organizations in Las Vegas, Smith launched a consulting business in 2016 as a way to connect donors with deserving charities, while providing visionary ideas and various fundraising approaches for non-profits.
Inspired by her eldest son, Smith established The Christopher Smith Foundation in her son’s name, and her new book chronicles how her life as a childhood abuse survivor and mother of a disabled son inspired her to become an advocate for people with disabilities within the non-profit world.