Rebecca Swanson Conrad joined the Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce in March 2017 as the President & CEO. Previously, Beckie was the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Maine College of Art in Portland, Maine where she began as a consultant in 2006. She was co-owner with her husband of downtown Auburn, Maine businesses, Austin’s Fine Wines and Foods for 20 years and for 3 years owned and operated Rÿsen Home Garden & Antiques, a retail gallery promoting local art and products that supported international women’s economic development.
Prior to Rÿsen, Conrad’s career spanned 21 years in higher education administration at Bates College, including 1999-2003 when she served as executive director of LA Excels, the college’s non-profit community development partnership in Lewiston-Auburn focused on leadership, arts, educational aspirations and economic revitalization. She served on the Maine Arts Commission for seven years, with four as vice-chair. Other volunteer board roles include past chair of the Lewiston Auburn Economic Growth Council, Androscoggin Home Care & Hospice and L/A Arts, vice chair of the Maine Association of Nonprofits and as a board member of Advocates for Children, the Androscoggin County Chamber of Commerce and Central Maine Community College’s Foundation.
She currently serves with Oxfam’s, Sisters on the Planet, a diverse group of American Women using their influence to fight global poverty, hunger, and injustice, with a particular focus on empowering women and girls worldwide and is an Olympia’s Leader Advisor to five high school girls in rural Maine as part of the Olympia Snowe Women’s Leadership Institute. She is also on the Board of Visitors for the University of Southern Maine and the Muskie School of Public Service and is a member of the Auburn Lewiston Airport board of directors.
Conrad received her BA in English from Bates College and studied in the New England Studies MFA Program at the University of Southern Maine. She lives in Auburn with her husband Austin Conrad, Jr. and her cat, Charles Mingus.