Col. Stephanie C. Smith ’87

A lifelong athlete and a lifelong supporter of her alma mater

Colonel Stephanie C. Smith currently serves the United States Marine Corps as the Commanding Officer, Headquarters and Service Battalion, Marine Corps Recruit Depot/Western Recruiting Region. She was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps in May 1987, after completing her undergraduate education at Bates.

An environmental studies major, Stephanie was a Benjamin E. Mays Scholar. She was a member of the varsity women’s track and field, soccer, basketball and lacrosse teams. An All-New England attacker in lacrosse, she remains the team’s all-time leading goal-scorer, with 150. Smith was a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the legal studies club and the Afro-American Society, serving the latter as secretary and treasurer.

She participated in the Mystic Seaport program during her junior year, and was elected to Bates Key (now known as the College Key).

Stephanie graduated from the University of Maryland School Of Law in 1990 and was admitted to the practice of law in the state bar of Maryland in December 1990. Colonel Smith has served the majority of her career in the Fleet Marine Forces, including the 31st Marine Expeditionary unit (Special Operations Capable), I Marine Expeditionary Force in Camp Pendleton, Calif., III Marine Expeditionary Force and 3rd Marine Division in Okinawa, Japan. She has also served in a variety of Combat Service Support units. She graduated from the Army’s Judge Advocate General School in 2003, earning an LL.M. in International Law, which is her designated legal area of emphasis.

In 2007, Colonel Smith was recognized by the American Bar Association and the Judge Advocates Association as the Outstanding Career Judge Advocate for the Marine Corps. She is the only Marine lawyer ever to win both awards in the same year.

Colonel Smith’s personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, and the Army Achievement Medal. Colonel Smith is a veteran of Operation Restore Hope in Somalia, Operation Joint Guardian in Kosovo, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

As a Bates alumna, Stephanie was an Alumni-in-Admissions volunteer from 1989 to 2004, and an Office of Career Services Career Adviser from 1991 to 2007.

Colonel Smith lives in San Diego, Calif., with her husband, Lt. Col. Tony L. Bumgarner (USMC retired) and their two children, Neil and Naomi.

For her devotion to her country and the example she sets as a Bates alumna, we are honored to welcome Col. Stephanie Smith, Class of 1987, into the Bates Scholar-Athlete Society.