Colby_YV_1WOBURN, Mass. (Oct. 28, 2013) – Somerville resident Colby Swettberg, executive director of Adoption & Foster Care Mentoring, was honored for her outstanding service to girls at the recent 2013 Youth Villages Women of Excellence Breakfast.

The event, held at the Revere Hotel in Boston, honored Swettberg and three other women for making significant contributions to the mental and physical well-being of girls and women in Massachusetts. Event proceeds benefited girls with emotional and behavioral issues as well as histories of abuse and neglect helped by the Youth Villages-Germaine Lawrence residential campus in Arlington.

Swettberg leads Adoption & Foster Care Mentoring, a mentoring organization that empowers foster youth to flourish through long-term mentoring relationships and the development of essential life skills. In addition, Swettberg serves on the Massachusetts Commission on LGBT Youth and was a founding member of the leadership team for the nation’s first co-ed group home for LGBT youth in foster care.

A tireless advocate, consultant and thought leader on sexual orientation and gender identity issues, she has written curriculum and provided training on LGBT issues to schools, social service agencies and the Mass. Department of Children and Families, and is a sought-after speaker at national conferences, institutions and universities like Harvard, Stanford, MIT and others.

Her work on behalf of foster and adoptive youth has garnered the attention of not just the Women of Excellence Committee but also Secretary of State John Kerry, who honored Swettberg as a 2012 “Angel in Adoption.”

Other honorees include Susan Goldfarb of Arlington, Mass., co-founder and executive director of the Children’s Advocacy Center of Suffolk County in Boston; Dolores Ortiz of Brookline, Mass. program manager for BNY Mellon’s Youth Leaders; and Andreia Soares of Dorchester, Mass., founding chapter director of the University of Massachusetts at Boston Chapter of Strong Women Strong Girls and mentor coordinator for Project Serve at the University of Massachusetts at Boston.

Youth Villages produces lasting success for children and families through its Evidentiary Family Restoration™ approach, involving intensive work with the child and family, as well as a focus on measuring outcomes, keeping children in the community whenever safely possible and providing accountability to families and funders.

In Massachusetts, Youth Villages helps children and their families from offices in Woburn, Worcester, Plymouth, Lawrence and West Springfield through intensive in-home services and transitional living programs using its EFR approach, and from its Germaine Lawrence residential campus in Arlington.

Youth Villages has been recognized by Harvard Business School and U.S. News & World Report, and was identified by The White House as one of the nation’s most promising results-oriented nonprofit organizations. For more information about Youth Villages, visit