Tribute to John Marston


Thank you for your service John Marston!

John Marston, long term COMPASS Board Chair, retired in January after many years of service. John Marston, said yes, when other bankers emphatically said, no!

Given COMPASS’s rich history of providing specialized high-quality educational and social services to at-risk children and families, it’s difficult to picture a time when the organization’s very existence was in question.

In 1984, COMPASS was a very small struggling non-profit. Although it had great teachers and caseworkers and an important mission, it lacked the operating capital to meet payroll and program needs. David Manzo, then executive director, went bank to bank in Boston seeking a line of credit to keep the agency afloat. From 20 banks, came the same resounding answer, " No, your work is important, but a loan from our bank is too risky."

Meet John Marston, a proud son of Portland, Maine, father of 5, graduate of Boston College and avid Red Sox fan, who was the banker willing to take a risk on the future of COMPASS. John not only agreed to loan COMPASS the money it needed, but soon joined our Board of Directors.

For more than 25 years, John served as a member of the COMPASS Board of Directors including ten as its Chair. He guided the school during a critical phase of its development, when the organization in moved from Jamaica Plain to Dorchester.

Passionately committed to COMPASS’ long-term success John led fundraising efforts in the corporate community including grants to improve employment opportunities for students as well as the school’s annual COMPASS at Fenway fundraiser.

COMPASS will forever be indebted to John for his initial faith in our mission and his long-term commitment to our success. John’s recent retirement from the Board gives us an opportunity to thank him for more than 25 years of wisdom, steady guidance and kindness.

All who know John, love and respect him. Maith thú (well done), John, well done!

To Top