Calvin Smith

Director of Business Development

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Northwest


Age: 27

Calvin Smith

In Calvin Smith’s office is a poster that says “Do Not Make Excuses, Make it Happen.”

“It’s really just about not letting roadblocks or hurdles ... keep you from doing anything,” said Smith, 27. “If you want to do it, don’t figure out why you can’t; just figure out how you can.”

It’s that motto that’s guided the Fort Smith native who is now the director of business development for the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Northwest.

Smith helped create UAMS Innovations Inc., which allows UAMS to hold an equity interest in the companies that are created from it. Smith also helped start Academic Physician Specialties, which is a multi-specialty clinic that launched in October. A 57,000-SF clinic is under construction for APS. And he is a co-founder of ARPharma, which was formed in March 2011 and handles the compounding and manufacturing of prescription drugs. Smith credits his success to the five years he spent right after high school in the U.S. Marine Corps, which instilled in him discipline and life skills. The stint in the Marines included a tour of duty in Iraq.

In May, he is expected to graduate with a managerial MBA from the Walton College at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.

Outside UAMS, Smith sits on the board of the Northwest Arkansas Entrepreneurship Alliance, where he is an original member. He’s also a diplomat for the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce, where he helps a number of small businesses.