Governor Baker Appoints New MCCA Board Members, Pauses BCEC Expansion for Review of Economic Feasibility

May 2015

Governor Charlie Baker today announced the administration’s appointments to the board of the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA) and a pause on the expansion plans for the Boston Convention Center and Exhibition Center (BCEC).

“We are pausing the expansion of the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center in order for the new members of the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority to conduct a thoughtful analysis and determine how these resources can best benefit our economy, job creation, and the development of Boston’s Seaport District,” said Governor Baker. “The environment has changed greatly in the five years since this proposal was first introduced, and the Seaport district has experienced an economic boom. Plunging ahead now, when the data on the expansion’s feasibility is mixed, combined with the change of leadership at the MCCA would be irresponsible given the vast amounts of taxpayer dollars necessary to not only build but operate the expanded facility in the face of pressing financial needs outside of the booming Seaport District.”;

“The Administration appreciates the work of all the previous board members and thanks them for their service to the Commonwealth,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “We look forward to collaborating with the new members as they get to work.”;

The Massachusetts Convention Center Authority consists of 13 members – 9 appointed by the Governor who serve at the pleasure of the Governor and 2 members appointed by the Mayor of Boston. Additionally, the Secretary of Administration and Finance and the Collector-Treasurer of Boston (or their designees) serve as ex-officio members.

The administration’s appointments to the MCCA are as follows and are effective immediately:

·       Cindy Brown, Massachusetts Visitors Industry Council Sea

·       Barbara Capuano, At-Large Seat

·       Andrew Crane, Resident of Hampden County Seat

·       Karen Johnson, At-Large Seat

·       Amy Latimer, At-Large Seat

·       Gregg Lisciotti, At-Large Seat

·       John McDonnell, At-Large Seat

·       Paul Sacco, Massachusetts Lodging Association Seat

·       Frederic Wittman, Resident of Cambridge Seat

 

The remaining seats on the 13-member MCCA board include:

·       Kristen Lepore, Secretary of Administration and Finance, or a designee

·       Ronald Rakow, a designee of the CFO and Collector-Treasurer of Boston

·       Jack Hart, a City of Boston mayoral appointee and resident of South Boston

·       Michelle Consalvo, a City of Boston mayoral appointee

About Cindy Brown, Massachusetts Visitors Industry Council Seat:

Cindy Brown has served as General Manager and CEO of Boston Duck Tours since 1997, and in addition to overseeing the company’s sales, marketing, and operations represents Boston Duck Tours at industry events across the country.  She has served on the boards of directors for the National Tour Association and the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau since 2003. Ms. Brown is a graduate of Franklin & Marshall College with a bachelor’s degree in economics.

About Barbara Capuano, At-Large Seat:

Barbara Capuano has served as Tax Manager for Raphael and Raphael LLP since 2006 and previously with UHY Advisors, LLC, supervising the review and preparation of corporate, partnership, and individual tax returns. Ms. Capuano holds a M.B.A. in Accounting from Babson College and a B.A. from Boston State College. She is currently a member of the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority.

About Andrew Crane, Resident of Hampden County Seat:

Andrew Crane is CEO of A. Crane Construction in Chicopee, MA, overseeing the design of custom homes, additions, and renovations for homeowners and commercial spaces. Under Mr. Crane’s tenure, A. Crane Construction has been recognized as an industry leader through its certification as a green energy building contractor and received the Home Builders Association of Massachusetts Legend of the Industry Award and State of Massachusetts Builder of the Year Award. Mr. Crane is a member of the Massachusetts Home Builders Association Board of Directors.

About Karen Johnson, At-Large Seat:

Karen Johnson manages the analytics division of The Debt Exchange, where she is responsible for relationship management and new client engagement while providing valuations for nearly $1 billion in real estate debt assets quarterly. Prior to DebtX, Ms. Johnson served as Director of Sales at Standard and Poor’s Real Estate Risk Management group. She received her B.A. in Economics from Yale University and studied at the New York University Stern School of Business.

 

About Amy Latimer, At-Large Seat:

Amy Latimer has served as the President of TD Garden since 2013 and has held extensive senior leadership and marketing roles at the Garden for the past two decades. As president, Ms. Latimer is responsible for day-to-day operations at one of the country’s highest-grossing entertainment arenas and oversaw the arena’s two-year, $70 million technology infrastructure upgrade. She holds a B.A. in political science from the University of Rhode Island.

About Gregg Lisciotti, At-Large Seat:

Gregg Lisciotti is president and founder of Lisciotti Development Corporation, a real estate investment and development company based in Leominster, MA. Since its establishment, Lisciotti Development Corporation has been involved in the acquisition, development and ownership of real estate projects throughout the United States. Mr. Lisciotti previously served on the MCCA Board of Directors under Governor Mitt Romney and recently completed his tenure as Chairman of the Fitchburg State University Board of Trustees. He is a graduate of Bentley University with a bachelor’s degree in finance.

About John McDonnell, At-Large Seat:

John McDonnell is currently Managing Director International of Fifth Generation, Inc., Makers of Tito’s Handmade Vodka, after his many outstanding achievements as President International and COO of Patrón Spirits International. With his years of launching and marketing a number of successful global spirits brands, he has become a highly regarded leader in his industry and a respected contributor to public service. Mr. McDonnell holds a B.S.B.A. from Suffolk University where he is also a member of the Board of Trustees. He also serves on the Board of the Boston Zoning Commission.

About Paul Sacco, Massachusetts Lodging Association Seat:

Paul Sacco is the President and CEO of the Massachusetts Lodging Association, and previously directed operations and sales for Belvedere Hotels Ltd. and Omni Hotels. From 2002-2007, Mr. Sacco served as Executive Director of the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism (MOTT). He is a member of the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Board, the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority, serves on the Advisory Commission on Travel & Tourism, and in 2013 received the State Tourism Award from Governor Patrick for his unique contributions to the growth and vitality of the state’s tourism industry.

About Frederic Wittmann, Resident of Cambridge Seat:

Frederic Wittmann is a Senior Managing Director of the Boston office of HFF with more than 30 years of experience in commercial real estate, including investment sales and finance. During the course of his career with HFF, Mr. Wittmann has completed in excess of $10 billion in commercial real estate transactions. He earned his B.A. from Tufts University.

Massachusetts New Governor's Corner Charlie Baker


Governor Baker Announces Availability of Federal Small Business Recovery Loans

Up to $2 million in low-interest disaster recovery loans available for small businesses, private non-profits

May 2015 

Governor Charlie Baker and Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito announced that in response to the governor’s May 12th request, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has made low-interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) available for Massachusetts small businesses and private non-profits impacted by this winter’s historic and unprecedented snowfall and freezing temperatures.

“The impact of unprecedented temperatures and snowfall is still being felt on main streets throughout the Commonwealth where extreme weather and crippled public transportation hindered day-to-day operations and the ability of customers and employees to get to work, frequent their local businesses or provide critical services,” said Governor Baker. “As we continue to work with state and federal disaster officials and pursue public transit reforms, these low-interest loans are key to providing economic recovery assistance to Massachusetts’ small businesses and non-profits.”;

Up to $2 million in low-interest loans for working capital needs are available to qualifying entities impacted by winter weather conditions between January 26, 2015 and February 22, 2015 in Barnstable, Bristol, Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk, Plymouth, Suffolk and Worcester counties, at rates of 4.00% for small businesses and 2.625% for non-profit organizations with terms up to 30 years.

“After an especially trying winter with record snowfall and freezing temperatures, many of our small businesses and non-profits are still struggling to make up for the lost opportunities and activity,” said Lt. Governor Polito. “We encourage those who are eligible to pursue the resources being made available by the Small Business Administration to aid in the recovery of the economic vitality of our cities and towns across the Commonwealth.”;

Eligible organizations or businesses are encouraged to visit the SBA’s secure Electronic Loan Application (ELA) website, https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela, to apply, or to download an application from http://www.sba.gov/. Completed applications should be submitted no later than February 15, 2016 to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

Further information and assistance is available from the SBA’s Customer Service Center:

By Phone:  1-800-659-2955

1-800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing

By Email:    disastercustomerservice@sba.gov


Governor Baker Announces New Appointments to Mass DOT Board

Governor Charlie Baker announced five new appointments to the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. The board, which includes Secretary Stephanie Pollack, currently oversees all MassDOT operations including the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), Highway, Mass Transit, Aeronautics, the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV), Office of Planning and Programming and the Office of Performance Management and Innovation.

“These experts bring tested experience and knowledge in their respective fields and represent the fresh start needed to lead the Commonwealth’s transportation initiatives,” said Governor Baker. “From the Registry to our highways, this group is tasked with enormous responsibility.  The MBTA panel uncovered monumental challenges in the aftermath of this harsh winter, and I look forward to this new board expanding and working alongside our proposed Fiscal Management and Control Board as we strive to do better than the status quo with our transit systems which left riders stranded and tax dollars squandered.”;

After a harsh winter that impaired the MBTA and disrupted public transportation for commuters, Governor Baker appointed a special panel of transportation leaders to take a deep dive into the structural problems with the T and deliver recommendations for short and long term plans to improve our transit system.

The panel recommended appointing a new Mass DOT board, expanding it to include 11 members, and establishing a Fiscal Management and Control Board (FMCB) along with a Chief Administrator to oversee operations and finances through 2018, create capital plans, introduce reporting and audit requirements and lift procurement restrictions for the MBTA.  In late April, Governor Baker filed An Act for a Reliable, Sustainable MBTA, acting on many of the recommendations made by the special panel.  Following the panel’s findings, the Governor also requested and received the resignation for all Mass DOT board members, excluding Pollack.

The Mass DOT board is comprised of seven members who are all appointed by the Governor with one designated as the chair.  Each member is required to fulfill a specific criteria with expertise in transportation, finance and engineering.  The Secretary of Transportation also serves on the board.  The Mass DOT board serves as the governing authority for both the Mass DOT and the MBTA and oversees the following: Highway, Mass Transit, Aeronautics, RMV, the Office of Planning and Programming and the Office of Performance Management and Innovation.

About the Mass DOT Board Members:

Dominic Blue is the Vice President and Assistant General Counsel at Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company and a previous member of the Mass DOT board.  Prior to his current position, Blue gained nine years of legal experience at two firms in Boston where he represented and advised numerous companies, funds, and government organizations. He has been involved in his community through leadership roles on associations and boards in the Commonwealth, most recently as a board member of the Greater Springfield YMCA. Blue received his M.B.A. and J.D. from Boston College in 2002.

Ruth Bonsignore has over 30 years of professional consulting experience in transportation planning and design, systems analyses and operations, and policy for federal, state and regional public agencies and private sector clients throughout the east coast. Ruth earned her B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from University of Massachusetts and her Master’s in Transportation from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Most recently, Ms. Bonsignore served as Senior Vice President and Transportation Practice Area Leader at the Massachusetts-based consulting firm VHB/Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc.

Brian Lang currently serves as President of UNITE HERE Local 26, Boston’s hotel and food service union. Lang has spent a total of seventeen years representing the union’s 7,000 members, starting as organizing director and eventually being elected as president in 2011. Before joining the UNITE HERE Local 26 team, Lang was already involved as a community organizer for SEIU Local 285. His previous work experience as a meatpacker and a bellman has given Lang a strong understanding for the needs of hotel and food service employees that he uses to advocate for workers’ rights.

Steve Poftak is executive director of the Rappaport Institute for Greater Boston at Harvard Kennedy School. Poftak was Director of Research and Director of the Center for Better Government at the Pioneer Institute for Public Policy Research. He has led research projects and authored a number of papers on transportation policy, government efficiency, municipal finance, and job creation. Previously, Poftak worked at the Commonwealth's Executive Office for Administration and Finance, where he managed the $1.3 billion capital budget, prepared the state's quarterly cash flow reporting, and monitored non-tax revenue receipts.

Betsy Taylor is Director of Finance and Treasury at Massachusetts Port Authority , where she has  played a critical role in budgeting, financial planning, treasury management, and project financing for over 35 years. In her current role, Taylor established the Massport Treasury Department, prepared major authority-wide financing strategy, and led Massport’s re-entrance to the bond market.  She previously worked in budget management and administration at University of Massachusetts, Smith College, and Lesley College. Taylor earned her BA graduating cum laude from Oberlin College, and her MBA from Stanford University. 


Governor Baker Re-Appoints Major General L. Scott Rice as Adjutant General of the Massachusetts National Guard

May 2015

Governor Charlie Baker re-appointed Major General L. Scott Rice as Adjutant General of the Massachusetts National Guard. Major General Rice has served as Adjutant General since April 2012.

Prior to being appointed Adjutant General, Major General Rice served as the commander of Massachusetts Air National Guard and as the Air National Guard assistant to the commander of the United States Air Forces in Europe.

“Major General Rice has done a tremendous job leading our National Guard and ensuring our troops maintain the utmost level of preparedness to protect the Commonwealth and serve our nation,” said Governor Baker.  “Throughout the unprecedented winter, Major General Rice was instrumental to storm recovery efforts and repeatedly coordinated troops and resources to dig out communities in need and clear T tracks for commuters.  Our administration is grateful for his service and confident he will continue to successfully lead the Massachusetts National Guard.”;

“I commend Major General Rice for his strong leadership,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito.  “We are pleased that he will continue to work with the Baker-Polito Administration to oversee our brave men and women serving the Commonwealth and nation.”;

“Major General Rice’s record of service to our nation and Commonwealth makes him exceptionally well qualified to continue to lead the critical mission of the Massachusetts National Guard,” said Daniel Bennett, Massachusetts Secretary of Public Safety and Security. “Under his leadership, the Guard is well positioned to carry on the proud traditions of the nation’s first state Guard.”;

Major General Rice oversees the administration and operation of approximately 9,000 Soldiers, Airmen and civilians of the Massachusetts National Guard. He ensures the Guard will continue to be a well-trained, equipped and mission-ready force to respond to a state emergency declared by the Governor, or be responsive to a national security mission.

Since 9/11 the Massachusetts National Guard has deployed more than 20,000 Soldiers and Airmen overseas helping keep our nation strong.

"It's an honor and privilege for continued service as the Adjutant General of the Massachusetts National Guard. I look forward in extending the Minuteman tradition that started right here in Massachusetts 379 years ago," said Major General L. Scott Rice. "I am grateful for the confidence Governor Baker has entrusted upon me and for the opportunity to lead the finest Soldiers, Airmen, and civilian professionals in the National Guard.”;

Over the last several months, Major General Rice worked closely with Governor Baker’s administration to include several coordinated winter storm emergency activations including a January Blizzard that blanketed the commonwealth with record snowfalls.

The Executive Office of Public Safety and Security and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency were heavily involved in the planning and execution of several state activations early in the year.

Major General Rice’s leadership and interagency experience was a key part of the overall public safety mission ensuring proper military resources were allocated and implemented that resulted in a successful operation.

Major General Rice was commissioned in 1980 through the Reserve Officer Training Corps’ program at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York. He attended pilot training at Reese Air Force Base in Texas.

In 1989, after nine years of active duty flying the F-111, Major General Rice joined the Massachusetts Air National Guard, 104th Fighter Wing to fly the A-10 Thunderbolt II, serving as the fighter squadron commander, operations group commander and wing commander. Major General Rice has deployed during numerous Air Force operational conflicts, including: Bosnia, Kosovo, Kuwait and Iraq. Major General Rice has also served as an Air Force commander in Kuwait, Jordan, Oman and Pakistan.


Governor Baker Names MassDOT Chair and Final Board Appointment

May 2015

Governor Charlie Baker announced the administration’s remaining appointment to the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) and designated Ruth Bonsignore as the Chair of the MassDOT Board. Former Commissioner of Public Works and Parks for the City of Worcester, Robert Moylan, Jr. will join Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack, Bonsignore and the five additional appointments named by Governor Baker last week, on the MassDOT Board.

“Robert joins a group of experts with tested experience and knowledge in their respective fields to begin the fresh start needed to lead the Commonwealth’s transportation initiatives,”; said Governor Baker. “From the Registry to our highways, this group is tasked with enormous responsibility.  The MBTA panel uncovered monumental challenges in the aftermath of this harsh winter, and I look forward to this new board under Ruth’s leadership expanding and working alongside our proposed Fiscal Management and Control Board as we strive to do better than the status quo with our transit systems which left riders stranded and tax dollars squandered.”;

“Worcester has benefitted tremendously from Bob’s decades of service and commitment to improving infrastructure and development,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “We look forward to having his energy and expertise alongside the new members and chair of the MassDOT Board and Secretary Pollack during what is a critical time for reforming the MBTA and improving the overall level of customer service for the Commonwealth’s traveling public.”;

Yesterday, Governor Baker and Secretary Pollack testified in front of the legislature’s Joint Committee on Transportation in support of the administration’s MBTA reform legislation, “;H.3347 An Act for a Reliable, Sustainable MBTA.” The recommendations for the legislation were developed by Governor’s special MBTA review panel of transportation experts to evaluate the structural and operational problems exposed by a harsh winter and the resulting impairment of the MBTA’s ability to reliably serve its customers.  The Panel’s report, Back on Track:  An Action Plan to Transform the MBTA, was released on April 8.

The legislation establishes a Fiscal Management and Control Board (FMCB) and Chief Administrator to oversee the MBTA’s operations and finances through 2018 and includes reforms to improve the MBTA’s transparency, performance management, budget planning and procurement processes. It also reconstitutes the terms and structure of the MassDOT board to be chaired by the Secretary of Transportation and includes 11 members which will consist of representation by communities served by the MBTA and a regional transit authority.

The MassDOT board is comprised of seven (7) members appointed by the Governor with one designated as the chair.  Each member is required to fulfill a specific criteria with expertise in transportation, finance and engineering.  The Secretary of Transportation also serves on the board.  The MassDOT board serves as the governing authority for both the MassDOT and the MBTA and oversees the following: Highway, Mass Transit, Aeronautics, the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV), the Office of Planning and Programming and the Office of Performance Management and Innovation.

About the MassDOT Board Members:

Ruth Bonsignore (Chair) has over 30 years of professional consulting experience in transportation planning and design, systems analyses and operations, and policy for federal, state and regional public agencies and private sector clients throughout the east coast. Ruth earned her B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from University of Massachusetts and her Master’s in Transportation from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  Most recently, Ms. Bonsignore served as Senior Vice President and Transportation Practice Area Leader at the Massachusetts-based consulting firm VHB/Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc.

Robert Moylan, Jr. served the last 21 years as the Commissioner of the Department of Public Works and Parks for the City of Worcester, overseeing a $90 million operating budget, $45 million capital budget and 400 employees responsible for the city’s water, traffic, maintenance, waste, engineering and recreational activities. During that time he was selected as a Top Ten public works official from over 26,000 public works professionals. Prior to his appointment as Commissioner, Moylan held various other technical and managerial roles in the Department. Moylan is a Registered Professional Engineer and Land Surveyor, receiving a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Massachusetts in addition to postgraduate work at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

Dominic Blue is the Vice President and Assistant General Counsel at Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company and a previous member of the Mass DOT board.  Prior to his current position, Blue gained nine years of legal experience at two firms in Boston where he represented and advised numerous companies, funds, and government organizations.  He has been involved in his community through leadership roles on associations and boards in the Commonwealth, most recently as a board member of the Greater Springfield YMCA. Blue received his M.B.A. and J.D. from Boston College in 2002.

Brian Lang currently serves as President of UNITE HERE Local 26, Boston’s hotel and food service union.  Lang has spent a total of seventeen years representing the union’s 7,000 members, starting as organizing director and eventually being elected as president in 2011.  Before joining the UNITE HERE Local 26 team, Lang was already involved as a community organizer for SEIU Local 285.  His previous work experience as a meatpacker and a bellman has given Lang a strong understanding for the needs of hotel and food service employees that he uses to advocate for workers’ rights.

Steve Poftak is executive director of the Rappaport Institute for Greater Boston at Harvard Kennedy School.  Poftak was Director of Research and Director of the Center for Better Government at the Pioneer Institute for Public Policy Research.  He has led research projects and authored a number of papers on transportation policy, government efficiency, municipal finance, and job creation.  Previously, Poftak worked at the Commonwealth's Executive Office for Administration and Finance, where he managed the $1.3 billion capital budget, prepared the state's quarterly cash flow reporting, and monitored non-tax revenue receipts.

Betsy Taylor is Director of Finance and Treasury at Massachusetts Port Authority , where she has  played a critical role in budgeting, financial planning, treasury management, and project financing for over 35 years.  In her current role, Taylor established the Massport Treasury Department, prepared major authority-wide financing strategy, and led Massport’s re-entrance to the bond market.  She previously worked in budget management and administration at University of Massachusetts, Smith College, and Lesley College.  Taylor earned her BA graduating cum laude from Oberlin College, and her MBA from Stanford University.


Governor Baker to help Honor Massachusetts SBA’s Entrepreneurs of the Year and Kick-off National Small Business Week

 

May 2015

Every year since 1963, the President of the United States has issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week, which recognizes the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners. 

This year, the annual awards ceremony in Massachusetts is hosted by SCORE Worcester Chapter, Boston Chapter and SBA Massachusetts. For more information, please visit: www.sba.gov/nsbw

  

Media Invited to Attend

Where: 

Sheraton Framingham
1657 Worcester Road
Framingham, MA  01701

 

When: 
Monday, May 4, 2015
11:00am – 2:00pm

AWARD LIST

Small Business Person of the Year: 
Todd Snopkowski - Snapchef

BOSTON 

Jeffrey Butland Family-Owned Small Business of the Year: 
Elaine J. Boone - PTS Truck-Trailer-Construction Equipment Supply
PALMER 

Minority-Owned Small Business of the Year: 
Michael Chege & Raphael Bibiu - Ace Medical Services, Inc.

WORCESTER 

Woman-Owned Small Business of the Year:
Debra Heims - H&S Environmental, Inc.

WESTBOROUGH 

Microenterprise Business of the Year:
Matthew &Tina Phaneuf - BioSurfaces, Inc.

ASHLAND 

Region 1 Prime Contractor of the Year:
Arthur Mabbett - Mabbett & Associates, Inc.

BEDFORD 

Massachusetts & New England SBA Small Business Exporter of the Year: 

Lester Hensley & Bashar Moussallieh - EMSEAL Joint Systems Ltd.

WESTBOROUGH 

Massachusetts & New England SBA Financial Services Champion:

Mary Katherine Mansfield - Bay Colony Development Corporation
WALTHAM 

Massachusetts & New England SBA Small Business Development Center Excellence and Innovation Award: 

Keith Girouard - Massachusetts Small Business Development Center, Berkshire Regional Office

PITTSFIELD

Massachusetts & New England SBA 8(a) Graduate of the Year: 
Hector Sanchez - P&S Construction, Inc. 
CHELMSFORD 

Massachusetts SBA District Director Award:
Robert J. Viamari - Cape & Plymouth Business Magazine
YARMOUTH PORT


Baker-Polito Administration Re-Launch Governor’s Council on Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence

Elevated office to set annual goals, recommendations and focus on implementation of Ch. 260

Governor Charlie Baker and Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito, joined by Attorney General Maura Healey, unveiled an executive order to re-launch the Governor’s Council to address sexual assault and domestic violence.  The executive order elevates the council to the Governor’s Office and names Lt. Governor Karyn Polito as the chair.  Over the next year, the council will be charged with implementing Chapter 260 Domestic Violence legislation, enacted in 2014 and reviewing programs aimed at reducing sexual assault and domestic violence in the Commonwealth.

“During the final days of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, I am pleased to sign an executive order aimed at helping individuals and children live a life free of sexual assault and domestic violence,” said Governor Baker.  “Our charge is to improve prevention, enhance support and demand accountability for perpetrators to ensure they can no longer hurt others.”;

The new council will set and report on annual goals and recommendations related to the Commonwealth’s funding, programs and best practices for the response, prevention and treatment of domestic violence and sexual assault. Consisting of up to 30 members representing providers, advocates, health care, the Attorney General’s Office, law enforcement, the courts and higher education, the Council will meet at minimum every two months, conducting outreach and establishing committees to carry out their tasks. The Executive Director will carry out the day-to-day operations and support for the Council.

“Our hope is to bridge the gap between services and agencies to ensure they can work collaboratively to support survivors and prevent them from homelessness due to domestic violence and sexual assault,”  said Lt. Governor Polito.  “I look forward to working with this council to identify best practices and determine ways to help survivors reach economic security and self-sufficiency.”;

The Governor and Lt. Governor were joined by Attorney General and council member Maura Healey, Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders, Secretary of Public Safety and Security Dan Bennett, Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Jay Ash, the Council’s new Executive Director and several members of the Council named to date.

"I’d like to thank Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Polito for reestablishing this council to oversee the implementation of the domestic violence law that will give important legal protections to victims, increase awareness about domestic violence and sexual assault, help hold offenders accountable for their actions, and improve services for survivors,” said Attorney General Maura Healey. “We are committed to working together to make sure that every resident of Massachusetts has the opportunity to live a safe and healthy life, free from violence.”

The Governor and Lt. Governor announced that Tammy Mello, currently the Director of Violence Prevention at the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, will assume the role of Executive Director for the Council.

 

“I look forward to working with the Baker-Polito administration and the Council as we look to end domestic violence and sexual assault,” said Tammy Mello. “Education is key to prevention and support and there is much more we can learn from law enforcement, advocates, healthcare providers and survivors in order to make progress towards that goal.”;

Between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014, over 2,000 incidents of sexual assault were reported to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s (DPH) Rape Crisis Centers. In Massachusetts, nearly 1 in 6 women and 1 in 21 men report experiencing rape, attempted rape or physical sexual assault in their lifetime according to DPH, with the majority of rapes reported being committed by intimate partners, family members or acquaintances according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nationally, the Surgeon General has declared domestic violence the leading cause of injury to women between the ages of 15-44, and in Massachusetts, 13% of all families entering the Emergency Assistance system cited domestic violence as the reason for homelessness.

“As the state coalition of nearly 60 community based sexual and domestic violence programs in Massachusetts, we look forward to working with the Baker Administration and the members of this Council to seek solutions in terms of policy and practice that support survivors, hold offenders accountable and prevent abuse in all communities throughout Massachusetts,” said Debra J. Robbin, Executive Director of Jane Doe Inc. and Council Member.

Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Polito have also proclaimed April as Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

Governor’s Council on Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence

(Members Named To Date)

Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito, Chair

David Adams

Co-Founder and Co-Director, Emerge

Stephanie Brown

CEO, Casa Myrna

Kim Dawkins

Executive Director, Pathways for Change, Inc.

Commissioner Edward Dolan

Office of the Commissioner of Probation

Mark Dubois

Chief of Police, Maynard Police Department

Suzanne Dubus

CEO, Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center

Worcester County District Attorney Joe Early

Sarah Ellis

Deputy General Counsel, Massachusetts District Court

Attorney General Maura Healey

Liam Lowney

Executive Director, Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance (MOVA)

Linda Molchan

Northeast Regional Coordinator for the Massachusetts Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program

Department of Public Health and SANE Liaison, Lawrence General Hospital

Sarah Perry

Executive Director, Second Step

Debra Robbin

Executive Director, Jane Doe Inc.

Emily Rothman

Associate Professor, Boston University School of Public Health

Nancy Scannell

Director of Policy and Planning, Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children

Michelle Smith

Executive Director, Women of Means

Northwestern District Attorney David Sullivan