Although Sheila Robertson Smith didn’t intend to pursue hematology, she is thrilled with how her career ended up. She started her journey as a physical education major at the University of Miami, but found she didn’t enjoy the work. While she was trying to figure things out, she decided to travel to North Carolina to visit a friend. The two of them went to an employment office to help her see what other options were available, and a position in a hematology lab at Duke University Medical Center caught her attention. Ms. Smith ended up getting the job, and the rest is history. She remained there for six years before advancing to become a hematology technician at North Arundel Hospital and at the Anne Arundel Medical Center.
One of the highlights of Ms. Smith’s career occurred when she worked at the Anne Arundel Medical Center. She was looking over a patient’s blood work when she realized it matched a slide of a newly-diagnosed leukemia cell she had recently received from a friend. She brought her discovery to the patient’s doctor, and he confirmed the diagnosis and complemented her on her findings.
When Ms. Smith eventually retired in 1993, she decided to dedicate herself to civic work. Her mother was very philanthropic, which inspired her to want to give back, too. She thus became involved with organizations like the Charles County Historical Society, the Charles County Garden Club, and the Smallwood Foundation. Her efforts led her to receive the Mrs. Frank J. Fletcher Award from the Charles Country Garden Club and the Charles County Historic Trust Preservation Award in 2007. Today, Ms. Smith continues her efforts on the board of directors of the Society for the Restoration of Port Tobacco. She has served the group since 1997.
Ms. Smith’s hobbies include gardening, traveling, and needlepoint. Her needlepoint creations have won blue ribbons and best-in-show awards.