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Corey Minor Smith

Corey Minor Smith

Legendary Lawyer, Noted Mental Health Advocate, & New York Times Celebrated Author


Rolling Out magazine calls Corey Minor Smith a “legendary lawyer, renowned attorney, noted mental health advocate, prominent media fixture, and New York Times celebrated author.” The New York Times captured the dramatic scope of Corey Minor Smith’s life when it described her as “a fascinating woman who moved 21 times and attended 14 different schools before graduating high school, [has a loved one living with schizophrenia], became a mother her senior year of college, and eventually went to law school and became a successful attorney.” These experiences along with becoming a trained facilitator for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), have paved the way for her mental health advocacy work. With a considerable national profile as a mental health and wellness advocate, Minor Smith has appeared in national media in prestigious venues like nationally syndicated radio show The Breakfast Club. She has also been featured in Forbes and Rolling Out magazines. As a well-regarded author, Minor Smith contributed to the Audible Original We’ve Got Answers and penned a powerful memoir entitled #Driven (pronounced Hashtag Driven) with a foreword by the renowned motivational speaker Les Brown. #Driven was crowned as “searing and moving” by the New York Times and featured as an Amazon Celebrity Pick. Minor Smith’s consulting talents and inspirational words have also benefited Fortune 500 companies such as ViacomCBS, Xerox and iHeartMedia. Read More >

Corey Minor Smith hails from the great state of Ohio, born in Canton, and educated at Bowling Green State University, where she received her bachelor and master’s degrees, and at the University of Toledo, where she earned her Juris Doctorate. Minor Smith’s legal career spans over 20 years and has been dedicated to public service as an Assistant Prosecutor, Judicial Attorney and Mayoral cabinet member before serving as General Counsel for the same public housing authority that provided housing for her and her family. Minor Smith made history as the first African American to be elected to a city-wide position when she received the most votes over five other candidates to serve as an at-large member of Canton City Council. Currently, Minor Smith is appointed to serve with the Biden-Harris Administration as Senior Counsel for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). In her role, she provides support to the Office of General Counsel under the direction of General Counsel Damon Smith and the leadership of Secretary Marcia L. Fudge.

Corey has received numerous accolades and awards, including the NAACP - Stark County Image Award, NAMI-Stark County Starfish Award, Boy Scouts of America Buckeye Council Spirit of Scouting Award, She Elevates Woman of Courage Award, induction into the YWCA Women’s Hall of Fame, and was named an ATHENA International Women’s Leadership Finalist. Along with being a philanthropist and being actively involved with a host of organizations and programs, Corey is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and the Bowling Green State University Alumni Board. Minor Smith lives in Washington D.C. and has two adult sons. Read Less ^

Speaker Videos

Sister Circle | How To Be #Driven About Your Goals with Author Corey Minor Smith

Corey Minor Smith On Caring For A Loved One With Mental Illness, Her Motivational Memoir + More

Corey Minor Smith – Driven to Overcome and Succeed

Attorney Corey Minor Smith | The Parent Effect

Support, Advocacy and Resources with Matt Kudish and Corey Minor Smith | Addy Hour Episode 18

Speech Topics

5 to Stay Alive: 5 Steps to Strengthen & Improve your Mental Health

We all know the importance of keeping your body fit. It’s essential for your health. But keeping your mind mentally fit is just as critical. A healthy mind gives you the fortitude and resilience needed to meet challenges head-on to successfully navigate life and career paths. In this presentation, Mental Health Advocate Corey Minor Smith shares five easy but critical steps to make mental health a top priority. These are essential tools to keep you feeling your best and leading a happier life.

Kanye Isn’t the Only One: Caring for a Loved One With Severe Mental Illness

When it comes to caring for a loved one with a Severe Mental Illness (SMI), Corey Minor Smith has had a front-row seat. Her mother has suffered from schizophrenia since Corey was a child. It led  Corey to become a trained facilitator for the National Alliance on Mental Illness. In this presentation, Corey charts a path for addressing a loved one with SMI: Offering tips, suggestions and strategies you might use to improve an often-harrowing experience—both for the one afflicted and the one charged with their care. She’ll take you on an inspirational journey of learning about mental illness, the resources that are available and how we can eliminate the stigma associated with it. You’ll learn strategies to adapt and find what works best for yourself and your loved ones. There is no one-size-fits-all treatment plan–and there is no one-size-fits-all relationship. With patience and tenacity, you can assist your loved one to have the most productive existence living with a severe mental illness.

What George Floyd’s Death Can Teach Us About DEIA: Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Accessibility for the 21st Century

While DEIA has become a well-worn mantra, its underlying principles are often muddled beneath a failure to grapple with each element of this powerful phrase. In this keynote, Corey Minor Smith offers a radical new understanding of diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility–it must be about more than various groups gathering and different identities coming together. It must focus on just ends and transformative practices. The former policemen responsible for George Floyd’s death were diverse: two White men, one Black man and an Asian man. And yet, their diversity did not lead to justice or change. Corey will probe the transformative dimensions of DEIA and how we can incorporate just principles into our corporations, schoolrooms or jobs.

The Child Is the Father of the Man: Overcoming Childhood Trauma to Be Your Best

In this presentation, Mental Health Advocate Corey Minor Smith shows you how to transform problems from childhood into power as adults so you can succeed in your life and career. Her talk is full of information that will help you unpack Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs). Once you are equipped with knowledge about ACEs, you’ll know how such factors may impact your life and how to effectively address them while moving forward in your career. With a thorough review of key strategies, you’ll be better able to overcome ACEs and embrace new and exciting opportunities.

How to Get There From Here: A Powerful Vision of Professional Development

There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all corporate culture. Every organization, institution and entity has a personality of its own. In this presentation, Corey Minor Smith will help identify the key components of the corporate culture in which you exist, so that you might learn how to thrive. It is also critical that companies and employees, alike, understand their value to each other. With the tumultuous times we continue to face, it is important for employees to believe that their employer has their backs. And it is critical for employees to show their value in the most favorable and productive light. This session is vital for any leader who wants to continue to enhance productivity, reach goals for the team and maximize efficiency for the company. With these strategies seamlessly implemented, companies and teams are sure to see immediate results.

Books & Media