As life-long Bostonians, Richard and Susan Smith have maintained a deep commitment to supporting their community and those less fortunate than themselves. In 1970, they established the Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation as a private family foundation. Today, three generations of the Smith Family are active trustees in the Foundation.
With the sales of the family businesses, Harcourt General and Neiman Marcus, the Foundation received the majority of its assets. Harcourt General, previously General Cinema Corporation, began in the 1930s as a chain of drive-in movie theaters and expanded over the next 60 years into a large, diversified company with businesses in motion picture exhibition, soft drink bottling, specialty retail, and publishing.