Deborah N. Smith

Deborah N. Smith



Deb Smith, a retired educator, has an adventurous spirit. Her first teaching job was in elementary school and first real adventure was a trek to Everest base camp and Kala Patar.

For more than 40 years Deb was an elementary teacher, K-12 school psychologist, middle school guidance counselor, and school improvement liaison with the Vermont Agency of Education. In the early 2000’s Deb followed her dream, took a two year leave of absence, and worked in Antarctica for the support services contractor (Raytheon) for the United States Antarctica Program. During that time, she emailed students in Vermont about life and work on the Ice and about numerous, cutting-edge NSF funded science projects in McMurdo and surrounding field camps.

Although not a scientist by training, Deb was drawn to others, like herself, who were adventurous, committed and curious about life in an extreme environment like Antarctica. Upon her return to the Burlington, VT school system, Deb encouraged students to take positive risks, face challenges creatively, and explore non-traditional career options. She continues to support the Inspiring Girls Expeditions program, which combines science, art and wilderness travel to foster future leadership, confidence, curiosity and success in young women.

Deb’s more recent adventures have included climbing Kilimanjaro, hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, walking the South Downs Way in southern England, and walking in Italy’s Umbria region. In February Deb went in search of the northern lights in Iceland and this summer she is traveling to Alaska.