Steve C. Preston currently serves as president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International, a nonprofit social enterprise whose mission is to help people reach their full potential through learning and the power of work. With over $6 billion in revenue, Goodwill advances this mission through 158 affiliated organizations, which operate over 3,300 retail stores, perform commercial services, employ over 130,000 people and manage workforce development and other support programs.
Prior to his role with Goodwill, 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 Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Small Business Administration; 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. 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 to 2008, Preston served as administrator for the SBA. Following Hurricane Katrina, 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.
Preston graduated with Highest Distinction from Northwestern University and received an MBA from the University of Chicago. He currently serves on the Wheaton College board of trustees, the Partnership for Public Service board of directors and the Northwestern University Weinberg College board of visitors. He has also been active for many years serving organizations that address the needs of both children and adults in underserved areas.