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Saint Mary’s to honor Schwiebert

Ashley Charnley | Thursday, May 14, 2009

Saint Mary’s College announced it will honor Deborah Johnson Schwiebert with an honorary Doctor of Humanities degree at the Commencement ceremony Saturday.

After graduating from Saint Mary’s with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature in 1974, Schwiebert earned her Master’s degree in Organized Leadership from St. Ambrose University.

Upon graduating from St. Ambrose, Schwiebert began working for John Deere. She has worked for the company for 34 years and currently holds the position of director of communications at John Deere’s World Headquarters facility.

Schwiebert has worked at Saint Mary’s for the past 16 years.

She has served on the Board of Trustees since 1998 and was appointed Board secretary and then Board chair. She served as Board chair from 2004 to 2007.

Additionally, Schwiebert has been a part of two Presidential Search Committees, served as chair of the Madeleva Steering Society committee and served as vice president and president of the Alumnae Association Board of Directors.

She also served as the Annual Fund chair in the College’s 1994 Sesquicentennial Campaign.

In 2004, Schwiebert received the College’s Distinguished Alumnae Award.

Schwiebert said she is pleased and honored to receive an honorary degree at Commencement and that she has enjoyed her time spent serving and giving back to the College.

“It has been my pleasure to serve the College these past 16 years. My Saint Mary’s education transformed my life and being able to give back to the College has been a real privilege,” Schwiebert said in a press release. “I am humbled by this wonderful honor and tribute.”

Executive Assistant to the President Susan Dampeer said Schwiebert was chosen because of all of the time she has put in volunteering and attempting to improve life at Saint Mary’s, as well as because of her success in the business world.

“Schwiebert is retiring from the Board of Trustees,” Dampeer said. “She was the chair of the Board and has been an outstanding alumnae volunteer. She is also a very successful business executive.”