Learning to Lead Episode #039: Interview with Tim Smith

In this podcast, I interview the Executive Director of Center of Life in Hazelwood, Tim Smith. In the interview, we talk about leadership, ministry, and how to make a difference in the communities in which we live. You can find the Tim’s bio, questions that I asked, my key takeaways, and ways to connect with Tim below in the show notes. I know that this interview will add value to your life! Enjoy!

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Episode #39: Tim Smith

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Tim is the Executive Director of Center of Life and pastor of the Keystone Church of Hazelwood. He has been working with children and youth for over 25 years. Tim was born and raised in Pittsburgh and educated in the Pittsburgh Public Schools. He is a graduate of Westinghouse high school and holds degrees from Triangle Tech, The University of Pittsburgh, the Leadership Training Institute, the American Institute of Banking as well as a diploma from the Reformed Theological Seminary. Tim has dedicated his life to empowering families and youth everywhere.

Connect with Tim: 


  • Tell us about yourself, your family, your passions, and what you do at Center of Life.

Personal Leadership:

  • Walk us through your leadership journey . . . did you always aspire to be a leader wherever you were? How did you learn leadership? Did someone teach you?
  • Name a person who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader? Maybe some one who has been a mentor to you? Why and how did this person impact your life?
  • What are you doing and what have you done to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a leader?
  • What books have you read that have made a great impact on you that you would recommend?
  • Could you talk about one or two of your greatest leadership failures? What did you learn from them?


  • What is incarnational leadership?
  • What are some common assumptions you hear people make about the inner city that aren’t true? How can we break down these assumptions?
  • How can churches really make a difference in the inner city?
  • How can individuals or families make a difference?
  • How can people partner with Center of Life?

Closing Questions:

  • Out of everything you’ve accomplished in your life and ministry, what are you most proud of?
  • Where is Tim Smith in 15 years? What do you want your legacy to be?
  • Any closing advice for young leaders?

Some Key Takeaways: 

  • Everything is about People
  • Anything you ever wanted to learn is in a book
  • You can wait for people to teach you or you can teach yourself
  • God may want you to be more than a Bishop
  • Titles don’t matter, faithfulness does
  • Be where people are
  • Become a student of your community
  • Walk with God!

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