Ken Smith has devoted his life’s work to Alabama’s natural gas industry. During his 36-year career with Alabama Gas Corporation (Alagasco), he has steadily risen through the ranks with Alabama’s largest natural gas utility and has been committed to continuing the long legacy of the company’s leadership to serving its customers and communities.
His contributions to Alagasco have benefited Alabama’s populace by expanding natural gas service throughout the state, ensuring their operations were focused on providing safe and reliable service, and supporting opportunities for economic development. Smith’s dedication to the next generation of engineers and to his community is also advancing Alabama and benefitting its citizens.
Today, Smith is president of Spire Alabama, Spire Gulf Coast and Spire Mississippi (formerly Alagasco, Mobile Gas and Willmut Gas), which serves over 500,000 homes and businesses throughout Alabama and in parts of Mississippi. As president, Smith oversees more than 1,000 employees in the operation and management of 29,000 miles of pipelines with operating revenues in the hundreds of millions of dollars each year.
After growing up in Birmingham, Smith went to Auburn University, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering in 1981 and joining Alagasco.
His career has included responsibilities in industrial and commercial business development, coalbed methane exploration and production, engineering and serving as division manager in Gadsden. Smith became a company officer in 1997 and since that time, he has served in executive roles overseeing engineering, operations, distribution and market development. He has helped direct the construction of major pipeline installations within the state to access alternative gas markets, provide service to new and expanding industries for economic development opportunities, and ensure that the company’s pipeline infrastructure is continuously upgraded. As Alagasco began to improve its information technology systems after 2001, Smith served as the executive sponsor for numerous business technology projects including GIS, a customer information system and a workforce management system.
Smith was vice president of operations when a horrendous tornado outbreak ravaged much of Alabama on April 27, 2011 resulting in Alagasco suffering unprecedented system damage. Smith directed response efforts as Alagasco’s emergency response teams first ensured the safety of its customers and the public, and then restored service within four days to the heavily damaged areas. Alagasco’s response to this calamity was praised by Pipeline & Gas Journal.
Following the purchase of Alagasco in 2014 by The Laclede Group (now Spire, Inc.), Smith was selected as president of Alagasco in 2015. He has since led efforts to help merge the consolidation of their operations which has also included the 2016 acquisition of Mobile Gas and Willmut Gas (MS).
His leadership extends to the national gas industry, having served in high-level positions with the American Gas Association and the Gas Technology Institute. Smith is also active in the Alabama Natural Gas Association.
A steadfast supporter of Auburn’s Samuel Ginn College of Engineering, Smith is a member of the Auburn Alumni Engineering Council. His other civic involvement has included serving on the Boards of the United Way of Central Alabama, Birmingham Business Alliance, American Red Cross, Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, Birmingham Education Foundation and Leadership Birmingham. He and his wife, Lyn, are involved with Vapor Ministries where Ken serves on the Board of Advisors and Lyn volunteers as their child sponsorship coordinator.