In recognition of outstanding leadership and impact at Silver Lining Mentoring and within the Greater Boston community, Colby Swettberg, CEO, has been named a Barr Foundation Fellow.

“I’m incredibly humbled and honored to have the chance to learn from and grow with this group of inspiring leaders, thanks to the Barr Foundation,” said Swettberg. “I’m grateful for the talented team at Silver Lining who has worked tirelessly to realize our vision for youth in foster care and, in so doing, has enabled them to thrive.”

As a member of the 2017 Class of Barr Fellows, Swettberg will participate in a two-year program that includes a group learning journey, a three-month sabbatical, and facilitated retreats. Silver Lining Mentoring will also receive a grant of $100,000 from the Foundation to support Swettberg’s participation in the Fellowship, leadership and organizational development, and exploration of new ideas to increase program capacity, serving the ultimate goal of better supporting more youth in foster care with vital mentoring services.

“The Barr Foundation is committed to investing in effective, visionary, and collaborative leaders. It is our privilege to recognize and support this exceptional group of leaders. We look forward to working with and investing in this newest class and their organizations, and seeing the impact of their individual and collective leadership,” said Roger Nozaki, Barr Foundation Vice President.

Swettberg, along with the other 11 members of the class of 2017, will be joining the 58 leaders recognized as Fellows since 2005. The 12 members of the 2017 Barr Fellows class are:

Beth Anderson, CEO and Founder, Phoenix Charter Academy Network

Clementina Chéry, Co-Founder, President and CEO, Louis D. Brown Peace Institute

Rev. John Finley, Co-Founder and Head of School, Epiphany School

Nigel Jacob, Co-Founder and Co-Chair, Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics

Giles Li, Executive Director, Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center

Darlene Lombos, Executive Director, Community Labor United

Marty Martinez, President and CEO, Mass Mentoring Partnership

Ayele Shakur, Regional Executive Director, BUILD Greater Boston

Colby Swettberg, Chief Executive Officer, Silver Lining Mentoring

Yusufi Vali, Executive Director, Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center

Dania Vázquez, Headmaster, Margarita Muñiz Academy

David Waters, Chief Executive Officer, Community Servings

Each new class of Fellows is nominated through a confidential process. There is no application. This year’s process began in January, with confidential nominations invited from over 200 individuals, including Foundation staff, alumni of the Barr Fellowship network, and others who have strong knowledge of the diverse leaders working in Greater Boston. After confirming the eligibility of nominees, those nominators were invited to review and provide input on eligible candidates. An eight-member selection committee, including three Foundation trustees and five civic leaders, then determined finalists.

Swettberg and Silver Lining Mentoring are incredibly grateful to the Barr Foundation for its recognition, incredible support, and this opportunity. For more information about Silver Lining Mentoring’s work, please visit

For more information about the Barr Fellowship, including bios of the Class of 2017, previously-named Fellows, and eligibility and selection process, visit:


About Silver Lining Mentoring

Silver Lining Mentoring empowers youth in foster care through committed mentoring relationships, the development of essential life skills, and access to critical and urgent resources. Founded in 2002, Silver Lining Mentoring is the only mentoring organization in Massachusetts that exclusively serves youth in foster care. We provide long term, one-to-one mentoring and life skills development for young people who have been removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect. Our mentoring matches last an average of over four and a half years, nearly six times the national average, and our volunteer mentors are often the only adults in our youths’ lives who are not paid to spend time with them. Silver Lining Mentoring envisions a future in which where all youth thrive. We believe that we thrive when we matter.


About the Barr Foundation

The Barr Foundation’s mission is to invest in human, natural, and creative potential, serving as thoughtful stewards and catalysts. Based in Boston, Barr focuses regionally, and selectively engages nationally, working in partnership with nonprofits, foundations, the public sector, and civic and business leaders to elevate the arts, advance solutions for climate change, and connect all students to success in high school and beyond. With assets of $1.7 billion, Barr is among the largest private foundations in New England and has contributed more than $834 million to charitable causes since 1999. For more information, visit


Media contacts:

Silver Lining Mentoring

Ashley Goncalves

External Relations Manager



Barr Foundation

Stefan Lanfer

Director of Communications