Sandra Larson has been writing for the Bay State Banner since 2009 and has contributed more than 100 stories on urban issues, including extensive coverage of foreclosure, affordable housing, minority jobs issues, and the city’s revitalization plans for Dudley Square in Roxbury. For the Banner and for Exhale Magazine, she has interviewed and profiled many prominent women, among them author Isabel Wilkerson, playwright Lydia Diamond, FACE Africa founder Saran Kaba Jones, former EPA administrator Lisa Jackson, and Massachusetts first lady Diane Patrick. Sandra holds a bachelor’s degree in biological aspects of conservation and a master’s degree in journalism. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in urban and regional policy. She lives in Boston with her husband and 12-year-old son.
When the long-dormant former Ferdinand’s furniture store reawakens as the Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building next month, Dudley Square will have a gleaming new centerpiece. Set in motion in 2011 by former Mayor Thomas Menino, the redevelopment promises to grace Boston’s geographic center with a sophisticated exterior that knits together historic and contemporary architecture, an airy modern interior and a sixth-floor community space and roof deck with sweeping city views available to Boston School Department employees, visitors and the public.
Thirty-six Boston high school students are starting on a seven-year path through high school and college and into teaching careers, thanks to a new Boston Public Schools program aimed at developing a more diverse next generation of teachers.
Mayor Martin Walsh welcomed some 500 community members to a My Brother’s Keeper summit in Roxbury last Saturday. A diverse group of community stakeholders that included local residents, clergy, educators, police and business and nonprofit leaders — as well as a good number of teens — gathered at the James P. Timilty Middle School to help shape the local MBK initiative that aims to improve the opportunities and outcomes for Boston’s boys and men of color.
Roxbury residents were vociferous in their opposition to the city’s proposal to site addiction recovery services displaced from Long Island at the former Radius Specialty Hospital on Townsend Street.
A report released this week, “The Silent Crisis: Including Latinos and Why It Matters,” shows that while Latinos make up 17.5 percent of Boston’s population, they hold only 7.5 percent of cabinet, senior staff or chief positions and only 7.1 percent of board and commission seats in city government.
Governor Deval Patrick has signed an Executive Order on Environmental Justice that enhances environmental protections and benefits for communities of color and low-income or limited-English-proficiency communities, groups that bear a disproportionate burden of environmental pollution and toxins.
Roxbury seniors shared their stories as part of the Roxbury Elder Storytelling Project.
City Council members reacted indignantly last week to Mayor Martin Walsh’s veto of a proposed new Commission on the Status of Black Men and Boys in Boston that District 7 Councilor Tito Jackson had been championing for the past 10 months.
Following last week’s release of a Boston Public Schools report revealing deep disparities in outcomes for black and Latino males in the Boston schools, community members raised questions and voiced a mixture of emotions and thoughts from dismay and anger to suggestions and passionate hope for change.
Nonprofit leaders discussed the challenges unique to women in girls during a forum presented by Simmons College and the Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts.