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In Memorial: Gordon Paul Smith

1 min readBy: Scott Hodge

As young people who work in a 75 year old organization, we cherish every connection we have to the TaxA tax is a mandatory payment or charge collected by local, state, and national governments from individuals or businesses to cover the costs of general government services, goods, and activities. Foundation’s early years — especially to the people who worked in our original headquarters in New York City.

So I was saddened to learn that one of those early scholars, Gordon Paul Smith, just passed away in Carmel, California. He was 96 years old.

I enjoyed listening to Gordon talk about his days at the Tax Foundation in the mid-1940s. He landed his first job out of graduate school as a junior analyst at the Tax Foundation and was given the task of working on our annual book Facts and Figures on Government Finance – that was only the 3rd edition. He liked the book so much he was still ordering copies until we published the 36th and final hardbound edition just a few years ago.

Like so many of the young scholars who cut their teeth at the Tax Foundation, Gordon’s experiences would last him a lifetime. To mark our 65th anniversary, Gordon wrote me a note recounting his experience at the Tax Foundation:

“I reflect on the wonderful memories of the close relationships I had and enjoyed with the Foundation beginning over a half century ago. As a young man fresh out of graduate school joining the Tax Foundation as a member of its research staff, it was the Foundation who, without any doubt, truly set the course for my career in business and government ever since. I am grateful. Always have been.”

The standards that guided Gordon Smith all those years ago are the same standards that guide us today.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife Ramona and their family.