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American Association of Community Colleges Honors Raytheon CEO Swanson

Swanson stands with his alma mater president and association chairman to accept the Outstanding Alumni Award. (left) Gilbert Stork - Cuesta College President, (right) Marie Foster Gnage, AACC Board Chairman Photo courtesy of the AACC

The American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) recently recognized Raytheon Chairman and CEO William H. Swanson with its Outstanding Alumni Award. The association presents the award annually to individuals nominated by their community colleges who have excelled in their fields and given back to their communities.

"I'm a firm believer in the power of community colleges," Swanson said. "As a CEO, I can attest they're an important engine for business and industry." Swanson enrolled at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, Calif., accepting a golf scholarship with hopes of one day playing professionally. His career path soon changed when one of his counselors saw his potential for engineering and inspired him to pursue it further.

"It led me to the Raytheon factory floor in 1972 and, 41 years later, to the corner office," Swanson said.

The AACC presented the award on April 22nd at its 93rd Annual Convention in San Francisco, where more than 2,000 community college presidents, senior administrators, international educators, business/industry representatives and federal agencies met to address this year's theme of "Reimagining the Community College."

"Now is the time to tap into the power of community colleges, to better meet student needs and the needs of business and industry," Swanson said. "Community colleges are needed now more than ever."

Last Updated: 10/30/2014

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