SWAG honors and celebrates the life of Joan Canton, our beloved visionary, mentor, and matriarch

In January 2021, the SWAG community said goodbye to our dear friend and leader Joan Canton. She was a visionary and mentor to SWAG as well as a champion for the well-being of her community. In particular, she worked hard to ensure children in the SWAG neighborhoods had access to resources and learning opportunities. As a result of her vision and guidance, SWAG’s service centers continue to serve SW Gainesville. SWAG honors and celebrates her life, and her legacy lives on in our work and hearts.

We may not all be in the same boat, but we are all in the same storm.

-Joan Canton

On November 4, 2021, the Community Foundation of North Central Florida honored Joan by awarding her the first-ever Joan Canton Community Champion Award. Subsequently, this award will honor those who do remarkable social justice work in the community each year.

SWAG Posts about Joan

  • Fall Feature 2021
    We have many reasons to be thankful this fall. First, SWAG’s visionary Joan Canton is the inspiration and first recipient of a new annual award from the Community Foundation of North Central Florida. We’re also very grateful for generous contributions individuals have made through the UF Campaign for Charities and the SWAG Family Resource Center … Continued
  • Community Connections and Joan Canton Way Road Naming Celebration
    On Saturday, August 28, 2021, SWAG paid tribute to our visionary Joan Canton. The day’s celebrations started with a Road Naming Ceremony in her honor, followed by a Community Connections resource fair. Read on for a summary and photos of the event!
  • BoCC Approves Naming of Joan Canton Way
    In May 2021, the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners (BoCC) unanimously approved the naming of Joan Canton Way. As a result, the portion of SW 61 Street and SW 8 Avenue between SW 20 Avenue and Tower Road will display the name of SWAG visionary Joan Canton.
  • A Walking Trail Near Linton Oaks is Nearly Finished!
    Yesterday, we were thrilled to realize the walking trail around the new retention pond in Linton Oaks is nearly complete. We wanted to share our excitement and thank our county commissioners and county staff for making this a reality. We can’t wait for an official opening. As she has for a decade, our SWAG Vice-Chair … Continued
  • Playground Naming Ceremony Honoring Joan Canton
    Today, SWAG and the CHILD Center honored Joan Canton, one of our SWAG co-founders and the visionary behind SWAG’s work as we announced that the new playground that is about to be built at the CHILD Center will be named in Joan’s honor. There was so much love in the room today. Joan has worked … Continued

News Media Featuring Joan Canton

Selected Photos

The logo for the PerMondo project, providing free translations for non-profit organizations

Monica Arias translated the introduction to this page into Spanish through the PerMondo project for the free translation of web pages and documents for NGOs and non-profit associations. The project is directed by Mondo Agit.

The logo for Mondo Agit, which directs the PerMondo project