Tribute to Marc Smith

Beth Savage

Helping organizations optimize quality
PQ Systems
It is with sadness that we share the news that Marc Smith, founder of The Elsmar Cove, passed away on July 15, 2022.

Marc was born in Covington, Kentucky on June 22, 1950. He spent most of his childhood in Fort Thomas, Kentucky, where he graduated from high school in 1969. Following high school, Marc joined the workforce as a certified EEG technologist at EEG Incorporated.

He attended Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri as a biology major with double minors in chemistry and anthropology. Following his departure from EEG, Marc worked various quality jobs ranging from lab manager to quality assurance engineer.

In 1989, he started a consulting and training business to provide expertise in documentation & configuration management, quality assurance & quality planning systems, and manufacturing & assembly systems. Marc featured over 30 years of experience working in mixed, high-risk manufacturing environments for various industries, including military, consumer, and automotive.

In 1996, Marc founded The Elsmar Cove. It was one of the first 100,000 websites on the internet and the earliest to focus on quality assurance and business standards compliance. Marc launched the forum so industry professionals had a free resource where they could discuss quality assurance-related topics with other professionals.

In 2004, Marc made it his primary job to maintain the forum. As the breadth of topics grew over a span of 25 years, Marc expanded Elsmar from general quality assurance to cover many national and international business and manufacturing standards. He spent most of his time moderating and managing the discussion forum until August 2021, when he passed the torch to PQ Systems to keep the community thriving and growing.

While Marc’s absence will be felt, his legacy will live on in The Elsmar Cove. As a tribute to Marc, please kindly share any stories, messages, or memories.


The Cheerful Diabetic
Oh no, this is such sad news! Marc was an amazing inspiration. He was always so helpful, so friendly and a truly deep well of knowledge. I will miss his presence here and his funny cartoons that he always seemed to have a plethora of available. I am grateful to him for founding this forum for all of us to learn and grow. I will always remember him fondly.

Sidney Vianna

Post Responsibly
Plant a tree, have a son, write a book, they say. It’s like leaving a legacy and in a sense achieving a kind of immortality. For Marc, this community is his legacy; and a wonderful one if you ask me. The motto of people helping people has been the guiding light for this space, under Marc's stewardship and we must honor his memory by never forgetting that. Every day, the body of knowledge available here increases and assists professionals seeking guidance and wisdom. I am honored to be part of this community and having had a chance to interact with Marc since 2001. He and I met in person only once in 2013 and we had dinner together in Ohio. An enlightened soul he IS and will be missed by many on this side of the divide.

Thank you Marc.


Quite Involved in Discussions
Very sad news. I can't express how grateful I am to Marc for launching this forum. Its absolutely amazing to be able to connect with such great minds, solving a multitude of problems, bouncing ideas to see what sticks, etc. So to be the man who was able to envision this?? What a legacy to leave behind, with massive shoes to be filled.

I don't think I would be where I am today without this place. Marc will be missed, but impossible to forget.

See you on the other side.

Mike S.

Happy to be Alive
Trusted Information Resource
I'm sorry to hear of Marc's passing. The community he created, which I knew first as Cayman Cove Forum, I have visited and learned from for 20 years, and it has helped me many times, and surely has helped countless others (surely numbering in the thousands).

As far as memories.... Way back when there was quite a bit of political posting in addition to quality topics, and Marc and I often clashed during those debates. He was a fierce defender of his positions, as am I, so in that way we were more alike than we were willing to admit, and sometimes like matter and anti-matter when we joined a debate.

May he rest in peace and his family find comfort.


Trusted Information Resource
The core memory I have of Marc is in his character of steward. He tended to the elsmar cove as if it was a beautiful public garden, and as such it became an enjoyable place to visit and contribute to. But you were also allowed to pluck the fruits of his work.
I wish his remaining family and friends strength in the coming time, which must seem a bit less colorful without him.

Ronen E

Problem Solver
Indeed it's very sad to think that Marc is no longer among us. Marc had great integrity and he fought to keep Elsmar alive against all odds, for which I am grateful. It's a really unique phenomenon in the entire history of the Internet, that will keep on honoring him. Above all, I will remember Marc as a humble and kind person.


Super Moderator
How did it take so ling for this to get out? This news is nowhere even close to welcome.

I've been here with Marc since 1998 (it says 99 but it was 98), as have a couple others here, and luckily my work had allowed me to meet up with Marc many a time for dinner, to visit him at his home and unknown by probably all here I had the fun experience of Marc being one of "my students" at a Lead Auditor course I delivered years ago (14001 and he was both fun and did very well).

This is not good.
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