Susan Marvin, president of Marvin Windows and Doors, received Bemidji State University’s 2011 Distinguished Minnesotan Award during commencement ceremonies today.
First presented by Bemidji State in 1981, the Distinguished Minnesotan Award acknowledges the contributions of current or former residents of the state who have performed exemplary service to the people of Minnesota or the United States. Susan Marvin’s father, the late William S. Marvin, received the honor in 1990. Other awardees include transplant surgeon Dr. John Najarian; polar explorer Ann Bancroft; and television journalist Don Shelby.
“Susan Marvin is a stellar example of what the Distinguished Minnesotan Award is all about,” said Richard A. Hanson, president of Bemidji State University. “A product of northern Minnesota, she has remained firmly rooted in her commitment to the area while generously sharing her leadership talents with state and national organizations.
“She is a superb role model for our students, leading by example and proving once again that hard work and commitment to community are keys to success,” Hanson said.
As president of Marvin Windows and Doors, Marvin oversees the window and door business of the Marvin Companies including the Marvin, Integrity and Infinity brands. Marvin serves on the boards of directors for Hormel Foods Corp., Marvin Lumber and Cedar Co., the University of Minnesota Foundation Board of Trustees and the St. Thomas College of Business Advisory Board of Governors. She is a member of the World Presidents’ Organization and Women Corporate Directors.
“I’m deeply honored to receive this award,” Marvin said. “This recognition reflects the accomplishments of a larger community — the amazing group of talented people whose goal is to lead an industry and have succeeded in doing so. So that’s why I am accepting this honor on behalf of my family and our community. The values I have lived by, the accomplishments, the success … they’re not mine alone. I am proud to share them with a long line of people who showed me that success is not an end in itself, but rather a means to an end. It is what allows us to make lives better for others.
“I’m especially proud to be recognized by a respected institution of higher education,” Marvin said. “Both my parents believed fervently that education, coupled with hard work, is the key to success in life. I’m confident that this year’s graduates will once again demonstrate the truth of that belief.”
Marvin has been an active member of various industry associations including the Window and Door Manufacturers Association and the National Council of the Housing Industry. She was a member of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, and in 1995 served as board chair. In 1995, Minnesota Governor Arne Carlson honored Marvin for her contributions to Minnesota business.
Marvin is a 1979 graduate of the University of Minnesota, where she earned an undergraduate degree in journalism. She lives in Warroad and Minneapolis with her husband, Keith Schwartzwald.