A Personal Profile
Gratitude for Family, Faith and a Minnehaha Education
David L. Swanson’s family connections to Minnehaha Academy parallel much of the school’s history. Dave’s father, Gustaf, did electrical work in Minnehaha’s first building during its construction in 1912. The family home was on 47th Avenue, just a block from North Campus. The Swansons worshipped at Bethlehem Covenant Church three blocks away. By the time Dave entered Minnehaha in the early 1940s, his four siblings had graduated from the Academy and left home. Dave recalls his mother, Pauline, rented the extra bedrooms to out-of-state students attending Minnehaha.
When Dave and his 51 classmates graduated from Minnehaha in 1943, school enrollment stood at 307 students and tuition was $70 per year! Those seniors left Minnehaha to face a war-torn world. Dave recalls that many boys who turned 18 before graduation were drafted. By the spring of 1944, half of the senior boys had signed up for military service. They took their Christian experiences at Minnehaha with them.
–David L. Swanson
Their close links to Minnehaha Academy and Bethlehem Covenant forever instilled in Dave and Ann, his wife of 57 years, the importance of providing financial support to those institutions in which one strongly believes. For the Swansons, it was giving first to the church, then to Minnehaha Academy.
Both organizations fill Dave’s time in retirement. He leads church mission work groups to destinations around the world, from Alaska to Chile. Whenever the Minnehaha Alumni Office calls, he’s ready to give his time.
In 1997, the Swansons created charitable remainder unitrusts to benefit Minnehaha Academy and Bethlehem Covenant Church. Dave says, "The Lord provided. It was time to support the places that molded our family’s lives."