2020 Graduate of Distinction
Paul R. Smith
Class of 1955
Paul R. Smith, class of 1955, was a graduate of Mansfield State Teachers College. He taught music for four years in the Spring Grove School District and for twenty-nine years in the Lehighton Area School District. Paul wrote the curriculum for the Junior High Music Department. He was in charge of the Lehighton Junior High Band and later the High School Chorus.
From 1965 until his death in 2016, Paul was the conductor of the Lehighton Band, one of the oldest community bands in the country. He and his wife Linn were also the choir director and organist at Zion UCC from 1964-2008. In 1970, Paul and Linn started the Zion Opera Workshop which presented a musical on the stage at the church. They continued this group for 38 years until they retired.
Paul received the Lehighton Area Chamber of Commerce “Educator of the Year” and the Lehighton Area Chamber of Commerce “Citizen of the Year.” Paul was also a finalist in the voting for “Citizen of the Century” during Lehighton’s Sesquicentennial Celebration.