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Biography: Wayne S. Smith

Wayne Smith

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Wayne S. Smith was born in Texas in 1932. He obtained degrees from the La Universidad de las Americas (BA), Columbia University (MA) and the George Washington University (PhD).

Smith served in the United States Marine Corps from 1949 to 1953 and saw combat during the the Korean War. He joined the Department of State in 1957, and saw service in the Soviet Union, Argentina and Cuba. In 1961 he was appointed by President John F. Kennedy to serve as the Executive Secretary of his Latin American Task Force.

Smith served as Chief of the U.S. Interest Section in Cuba from 1979 to 1982 but left the Foreign Service in 1982 because of fundamental disagreements with the foreign policy of President Ronald Reagan.

In 1982 Smith was appointed as Senior Associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington. In 1985 he became Adjunct Professor of Latin American studies at the Johns Hopkins University and since 1992 a Senior Fellow at the Center for International Policy in Washington.

Wayne S. Smith is the author of several books including Castro's Cuba: Soviet Partner or Nonaligned? (1985), The Closest of Enemies: Personal and Diplomatic Account of United States-Cuban Relations Since 1957 (1988), Subject to Solution: Problems in Cuban-U.S.Relations (1988), Portrait of Cuba (1991) and The Russians Aren't Coming: New Soviet Policy in Latin America (1992).

In March, 2001, Smith was a member of a United States delegation that visited the scene of the Bay of Pigs battle. The party included Arthur Schlesinger (historian), Robert Reynolds (the CIA station chief in Miami during the invasion), Jean Kennedy Smith (sister of John F. Kennedy), Alfredo Duran (Bay of Pigs veteran) and Richard Goodwin (Kennedy political adviser and speech writer).

Wayne S. Smith is currently a Center for International Policy Senior Fellow and director of the Cuba Program.

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