Story posted June 15, 2001
Mark R. Swann í84 was named the recipient of this yearís Common Good Award, presented at Reunion Convocation Saturday, June 2.
The Common Good Award honors those alumni who have ďdemonstrated an extraordinary, profound, and sustained commitment to the common good, in the interest and for the benefit of society, with conspicuous disregard for personal gains in wealth or status.Ē
Mr. Swann is the executive director of both the Preble Street Resource Center, a multi-service agency serving the most needy residents of Portland, Maine, and Stone Soup Foods, an entrepreneurial program that supports training in the culinary arts for low-income individuals.
Born in Stoughton, Mass., Mr. Swann was a history major at Bowdoin and a member of the Delta Sigma fraternity, and played as a member of the Rugby Club. He graduated cum laude. Following graduation he worked for the International Institute in Boston, first overseeing resettlement services for Ethiopian refugees and later as director of social services for the agency. In 1989 he earned a masterís degree from the University of Massachusetts at Boston in public affairs.
In 1991 Mr. Swan accepted his position at Preble Street and worked with other providers to consolidate services for homeless and low-income residents at the Center. He has been a passionate advocate for the homeless in the state of Maine, serving on the Governorís Blue Ribbon Commission on Hunger and Food Security and the Governorís Interagency Task Force on Homelessness. He has been a director of the York-Cumberland Housing Company, the Maine Collaboration for the Homeless, and Hand to Hand.
In collaboration with private-sector investors, Mr. Swann created Stone Soup Foods in 1996 in an effort to provide vocational training and experience to the Centerís clients. Stone Soup employees operate a kiosk at Portlandís Public Market and a nearby restaurant. In 1997, Swann and Preble Street staff began offering services for Portlandís homeless teenagers. His professional and volunteer commitments to the community led the Portland Rotary Club to present Mr. Swann with its first Paul Harris Fellow Award for Community Service in 1993. In 1995 he won the U.S. Mayorís End Hunger Award.