Donald Earl Smith, 60, of Banning, California, passed away Wednesday, April 3, 2019, at his home.
A viewing was held on April 11 at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Banning.
A celebration of life graveside service followed at the San Gorgonio Memorial Park in Banning.
Donald was born May 15, 1958 in Pomona to Ken and Earline Smith.
A resident of Banning since the age of six, he graduated as the valedictorian from Banning High School in 1976 and from Santa Clara University in 1980.
He then went on to earn his Juris Doctorate in 1984 from Santa Clara University Law School.
In his professional career Donald maintained his status as an active and licensed attorney-at-law, but after over a decade of private practice in Palm Springs he chose to step away to begin a new journey as a philanthropist and businessman.
Over the following years, he developed and invested in real estate, acted as the broker of record for his brother’s real estate brokerage, Dan Smith and Associates located in Big Bear Lake, and was also a business partner with Maxine Lewis in Haskell Real Estate in Banning.
His involvement over the past 24 years in public service is extensive and should be his legacy.
He first began as a volunteer for the Banning Chamber of Commerce.
Shortly after, in 1992 as he became more aware of City issues, he decided to run for and was elected as a Banning City Councilman.
In 1994 he was voted to serve as the Mayor of Banning.
He also spent 22 years in service to the County as a member of the Board of Directors for the Riverside County Date Festival, acting as President for three terms.
He was proud to have been chosen to serve as Vice-Chairman of the 2013 Banning Centennial Celebration.
Over the years he was active and involved with too many groups to list in their entirety but include various FFA groups, student scholarship funds and the Banning Cultural Alliance.
His constant presence at city meetings, the advice and council he provided to various civic and community leaders and his institutional knowledge of both the history and the operations of City of Banning will be sorely missed.
Donald is survived by his parents, Ken and Earline Smith, his two brothers, Daniel and Kenneth Smith, his five nephews Sawyer, Jonah, Tennyson, Kyle and Bryan Smith, and his two nieces McKenna and Karen Smith.