Published: February 01. 2013 7:21AM
Written by Leslie Provence
Photographed by Josh Norris
Rod Smolla is the president of Furman University. He graduated from Yale in l975 and Duke Law School in l978, where he was first in his class.
Smolla is an author, educator and lawyer. His latest book, “The Constitution Goes to College,” was published by New York University Press in 2010. Among his many other books are “Jerry Falwell v. Larry Flint: The First Amendment on Trial” and “Deliberate Intent,” which described how he successfully represented the families of three murder victims in a suit against the publisher of a murder instruction manual used by a hit man for instructions in carrying out the murders. The book was later made into a television movie.
As a lawyer, Smolla has argued cases in state and federal courts throughout the country, including the United States Supreme Court.
1. Where were you born?
2. Are you an introvert or an extrovert?
3. What is your favorite movie?
“To Kill a Mockingbird.”
4. Is your desk messy or neat?
5. What is your favorite thing about Greenville?
The vibrancy of downtown and the West End.
6. What was your first car?
A Chevy Nova.
7. What was your major in college?
8. What is your favorite comfort food?
9. What is your idea of a dream vacation?
No electronic communication.
10. What is your favorite thing to cook?
11. What was your favorite subject in school?
19th Century American Literature.
12. What advice would you give a young person just starting out?
Remain open-minded, adaptable and optimistic; understand that you won’t amount to anything if you try to please everybody. Tend to your overall well-being — mind, spirit, body — and don’t take yourself too seriously.
13. What type of music do you most enjoy?
14. Are you a good dancer?
15. Do you prefer the mountains or the beach?
16. What was your last vacation?
The beach with the family.
17. What would you do if you weren’t in your present occupation?
I’d be a novelist.
18. What is the best gift you have ever received?
19. What makes you laugh?
My best friend, from L.A.
20. What chore do you really hate to do?
Change hamster litter.