Steve Preston currently serves as President and CEO of Goodwill Industries International, the North American leader in workforce training and development, job placement and other services for people looking for employment or career advancement. Goodwill operates through a network of 161 independent member organizations in the United States and Canada and has a presence in 13 other countries.
Prior to his role with Goodwill, Mr. Preston served in numerous operational and financial leadership positions in both the public and private sectors. He headed two federal agencies during times of national crisis, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Small Business Association (SBA); led successful turnarounds as the CEO of two private corporations, Oakleaf Global Holdings and Livingston International; and served as the CFO of two Fortune 500 companies during times of significant change and restructuring, Waste Management and ServiceMaster.
Preston served as HUD Secretary during the housing crisis of 2008, representing the federal agency on the board of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). During his tenure, HUD dramatically increased Federal Housing Administration and Ginnie Mae capacity to meet exponentially rising demand. Under his leadership, the agency also expanded its ability to assist victims of natural disasters, advanced the rebuilding of mixed-income neighborhoods in post-Hurricane Katrina New Orleans, and improved financial literacy programs.
From 2006–2008, Preston served as Administrator for the SBA. Following Hurricane Katrina, Mr. Preston spearheaded a reform agenda to expedite financial support to disaster victims and make the agency more responsive to customers, accountable for results, and efficient in the delivery of services. During his tenure, the SBA launched and advanced programs to expand entrepreneurship opportunities for veterans and military families, for people located in areas with high rates of poverty and unemployment, and for people who were facing various life challenges.
In his private-sector roles, Mr. Preston gained significant experience expanding into new product and geographic markets, leveraging technology for both client and efficiency benefits, improving employee engagement and restructuring operations.
Mr. Preston graduated with highest distinction from Northwestern University and holds an MBA from The University of Chicago. He has served on numerous boards or in other capacities for organizations supporting the needs of people with disadvantages, especially in urban centers. He serves on the Boards of Directors for Sunshine Enterprises, the Board of Trustees of Wheaton College, and the Board of Visitors for the Northwestern University Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences.
He and his wife, Molly, live near Chicago and have five children — Anna, Madeleine, Gibson, Eleanor, and Steven Jr.