Janet Swearer

17 November 2020
Jan Swearer

Janet Swearer, age 90, died on November 6th in Northfield. Jan was married to Howard Swearer, the President of Carleton from 1970–1977. In her role as the president’s spouse, Jan graciously welcomed faculty, staff, students, trustees, and speakers into Nutting House, which she developed into the presidential home using her creative eye.   

Jan was the first president’s spouse to have a career of her own. An accomplished artist, Jan created an arts awareness program at the Minnesota Museum of Art (now the Minnesota Museum of American Art in St. Paul) and later co-directed the museum. When traveling with her husband for Carleton, she gave gallery tours for alumni and others. She also taught classes at the Northfield Arts Guild. 

See a brief obituary on the Northfield News website.

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  • 2020-11-19 09:55:16
    Fred Rogers
    I met Jan Swearer when I was a senior at Carleton. Mark Haugland and I were to live in the President's house our senior year and to take care of their three young boys when they needed to travel or were at events in the evenings. She was welcoming and gracious and I always felt at ease as we got the boys breakfast and off to school some days or we we went about our own business of being Carleton students. It has been my great pleasure to close this loop by coming to know Rick Swearer and his family as an adult living in Northfield now. I know that he and Diane and their children have spent many hours talking with and giving comfort to Jan after she returned to live here near them. I'm so glad to have met her and to have spent my Senior year as a small part of the Swearer family. Peace to Jan and to all of her now extended family.

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