Neville Smith began his long association with lacrosse through
Canadian Box Lacrosse, played during the 1930s throughout Western
New York, Ontario, and on all reserves of the Iroquois Confederacy.
He played six-man box lacrosse in those early years.
In 1949, Smith moved to Connecticut, leaving box lacrosse behind
and joining the forces to develop field lacrosse in the Northeast.
In 1956, he co-founded the Connecticut Valley Lacrosse Club and
had been president of the Connecticut Valley Lacrosse Association
for more than 20 years. Through his auspices, lacrosse was established
in the high school and youth levels through the West Hartford Youth
Lacrosse League, which Smith also founded.
A charter member of the U.S. Club Lacrosse Association, his 30-year
involvement has made Smith the commissioner of the USCLA and chairman
of the Awards Committee. Smith has also been a member of the New
England Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association and the U.S. Lacrosse
Coaches Association for more than 30 years, guiding the development
of lacrosse teams and organizations.
As founder of the former U.S. Box Lacrosse Association, Smith represented
the team at the world's first box lacrosse tournament in Vancouver
Smith has long championed the cause of the Iroquois Nationals/Native
American Lacrosse Programs. Banned from international competition
in 1880, Smith's untiring service to the Native Americans assisted
the Iroquois Nationals in returning to international competition
Smith's endless contributions are evident in the numerous awards
received since his lacrosse crusade began: founders awards, distinguished
service awards, "Man of the Year" awards, etc. In 1990,
Smith received the Howard E. Johnson Memorial Award presented by
the Lacrosse Foundation and sponsored by the Maryland Lacrosse Club.
It was given for his work in all facets of the development of the
game. In 1995, he received the Nutmeg State Living Legend Award for his contributions to lacrosse.
Neville Smith passed away on July 1, 2005.