Photo of Ruth SmithRuth Smith obtained her Ph.D. in Forensic and Analytical Chemistry in 2003 from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland. She was then a postdoctoral fellow in the Analytical Chemistry Group at Los Alamos National Laboratory, New Mexico, where she worked on improving methods for the detection of explosives. In 2005, she moved to Michigan State University to coordinate the forensic chemistry concentration, and became director of the Forensic Science Program in 2018. She teaches graduate-level courses in controlled substance identification and trace evidence analysis.

Her research interests focus on the application of new and emerging analytical techniques to the forensic sciences, as well as the application of multivariate statistical procedures for the association and discrimination of various types of forensic evidence. Her work has been published widely in forensic science and analytical chemistry journals and has mentored more than 30 M.S. students. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, serves as associate editor for forensic chemistry for the Journal of Forensic Sciences, and serves on the editorial board for Forensic Chemistry. She is also a member of the Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC) for Forensic Science Seized Drugs Subcommittee and a core committee member of the Scientific Working Group for Seized Drug Analysis (SWGDRUG).