60, Managing partner, Smith Anderson
Wake Forest University, B.A., J.D.
Leading the largest Triangle-based law firm and advising on mergers and capital raisings totaling billions of dollars is his day job. But Roach also exerts influence as chairman of the board of trustees at Wake Forest University, where his wife, Stephanie, and two children also are graduates. He’s also leading a multimillion-dollar fundraising campaign at White Memorial Presbyterian Church.
What is North Carolina’s key challenge?
The state is a national leader in economic growth, and that is going to continue over the next decade. Our challenges are to take advantage of that growth in a way that benefits rural counties as well as urban ones, provide infrastructure for growth, and have business leaders involved in promoting bipartisanship to enable N.C. to put its best foot forward.
Share an insight about your community.
The Triangle is remarkably diverse and inclusive. I would like to think the friendly Southern culture and N.C.’s progressive attitude over the last 75 years bring out the best in everyone. We need to continue to promote discourse and not discord.
What is something people don’t know about you?
I used to officiate football. I love to water ski. I like chick flicks.
Key 2018 accomplishment?
Does being a new grandfather count? Working as a team to raise $20 million at church to address the needs of future generations of our members and our community.
What advice do you share with newcomers?
Have a good heart. Build relationships. Know what you don’t know. Seek other views. When feasible, make decisions incrementally. Focus on excellence rather than success. Attitude and outlook matter.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
The people I work with inside and outside the firm and the platform Smith Anderson provides to be involved in other interests that matter.