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Denella Clark Recognized as the First Black Woman to Chair the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women

On Thursday, October 21, 2021, City of Boston's Mayor Kim Janey recognized Boston Arts Academy Foundation's President and CEO, Denella Clark, with a proclamation as the first Black woman to chair the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women in its history.

a picture of Boston Arts Academy Foundation's President and CEO, Denella Clark, with the title above "Recognizing Chairwoman Clark"

DENELLA CLARK, Hyde Park resident and President and CEO of Boston Arts Academy (BAA) Foundation, will be recognized by City of Boston’s Mayor Kim Janey with a proclamation as the first Black woman to chair the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women in its history. Chairwoman Clark was first appointed to the Commission in 2015 and reappointed in 2018 by Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker.

"I was pleased to appoint Denella Clark to the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women as she has a proven track record of working tirelessly to promote women and people of color across the Commonwealth," said Governor Charlie Baker. "Congratulations to Denella on this proclamation as we honor the first Black woman to serve as Chair of the Commission, I look forward to seeing her continued work on behalf of all women and girls in Massachusetts."

Chairwoman Clark currently serves as President and CEO of Boston Arts Academy Foundation, an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that secures essential private funding that supports Boston Arts Academy, the city’s only public high school for the visual and performing arts. Eighty-four percent of the school’s 480 students identify as Black or Latinx, most students come from low-income families. For seven straight years, 97% of graduating students have been accepted to college, many becoming first-generation college graduates. More than 1,700 of Boston Arts Academy’s diverse and talented alumni are innovating and leading in a variety of careers in Greater Boston and beyond. In 2022, Ms. Clark, Boston Arts Academy Foundation, and the school will celebrate the grand opening of Boston Arts Academy’s first state-of-the-art school building directly across the street from Fenway Park.

Chairwoman Clark shares, “While talent is everywhere, opportunity is not. Mayor Janey and I share a fierce dedication to the fight for equity and justice, including breaking opportunity barriers in education, housing, economic justice, police accountability, and public safety. I gratefully accept this recognition from my dear friend, who proudly serves as the first Black female mayor in the city of Boston.”

"The City of Boston is honored to recognize Denella Clark as the first Black Chairwomen of MCSW," said Boston Mayor Kim Janey. "Denella is steadfast in her dedication to justice, representation, and inclusion for all Boston residents. Her efforts and this well-deserved recognition are a reminder of the value of diversity in leadership."

The proclamation presentation is set to take place at the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women’s Full Commission meeting held on Thursday, October 21, 2021 from 5:00-5:30pm. Community members and partner organizations are strongly encouraged to attend. Please register using the link: https://bit.ly/3lG0so4.

For more information, please email mcsw@mass.gov or visit www.mass/gov/women.

The Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women is an independent state agency that was legislatively created in 1998 to advance women of the Commonwealth to full equality in all areas of life and to promote their rights and opportunities. The MCSW provides a permanent, effective voice for the women of Massachusetts.

SOURCE: download (mass.gov)

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