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Ralph Smith and Michael Waters Help Lead Rhodes Scholar Conference
August 19, 2013

Press Release

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.Ralph H. Smith II and Michael D. Waters, both resident in the Birmingham office, are part of the working team organizing a global conference celebrating the 110th Anniversary of the Rhodes Scholarship. The event will be held in Oxford, England, September 18-20, 2013, with over  1000 Rhodes Scholars from around the world expected to attend. The event will consist of a series of social, educational, and consultation sessions across Oxford. In addition, Mr. Smith will appear on one of the educational panels.

Mr. Waters and Mr. Smith, elected Rhodes Scholars from Alabama in 1973, have been active in leadership of the Rhodes Scholarships in the United States. Mr. Waters was responsible for the selection of the Rhodes Scholar in the southeast from 1982 to 1996. Mr. Smith currently serves as a member of the Executive Committee of the Association of American Rhodes Scholars and has been responsible for the Rhodes Scholarship selection process in Alabama, Florida, and Tennessee since 2004.

Created in 1902 by the Will of Cecil Rhodes, a British philanthropist and African colonial pioneer, the Rhodes Scholarships provide all expenses for two or three years of study at the University of Oxford in England. Applicants are chosen based on several criteria including: high academic achievement, integrity of character, a spirit of unselfishness, respect for others, potential for leadership, and physical vigor.

About Ralph Smith and the Ralph Smith Group
Ralph Smith, CEO of The Ralph Smith Group and special counsel at Jones Walker LLP, served for almost a decade as General Counsel and a Member of the Chancellor's Senior Policy Staff at The University of Alabama System, where he also teaches and advises on International initiatives. A corporate and business transactions lawyer by training, in 2012, Mr. Smith helped launch the Global Innovation Alliance to promote scientific innovation and economic development.

The Ralph Smith Group LLC (, provides strategic consulting services to business and higher education.

About Michael Waters
Mr. Waters is a native of Cullman, Alabama, and a partner in the firm’s Banking & Financial Services Practice Group. He is also a member of the firm’s Board of Directors. Mr. Waters practices in the areas of corporate securities and banking.

About Jones Walker

Jones Walker LLP, with more than 375 attorneys, provides a comprehensive range of legal services to a national and international corporate client base through offices in Alabama, Arizona, California, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, New York, Ohio, and Texas.