Denella Clark, a Hyde Park resident and president of Boston Arts Academy (BAA) Foundation, has been elected as chair of the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women, an independent state agency. Clark was first appointed to the Commission in 2015 and reappointed in 2018 by Gov. Charlie Baker. She was elected to chair by her fellow commissioners. Her past roles include serving as vice-chair and treasurer.
“As the first Black woman to chair the Commission, one of my goals is to amplify legislation that will directly benefit and improve the lives of all women, especially women of color. Defending Massachusetts women from sexual harassment in the workplace, decreasing the wage gap between women and their male colleagues, and enabling more working mothers to run for public office – I will help the Commission push for positive change on these issues, among many others.”
As president of BAA Foundation, her vision and leadership have created significantly greater visibility and financial sustainability for BAA, the city’s only public high school for the visual and performing arts. Clark’s stewardship of the Foundation has helped the school provide a world-class, arts-intensive education to a diverse student body where most students come from low-income families. For six consecutive years, 97 percent of BAA graduating seniors have been accepted to college.
“Denella’s election as the first woman of color to chair the Commission is an important milestone, and we look forward to her continued work to promote equity for women and people of color across the Commonwealth,” said Gov. Baker.
"Denella is a leader that centers the voices of those who don’t often see themselves or their stories represented, who pushes our institutions to serve our communities equitably, and who knows what is at stake when they do not. I look forward to continuing to work with her and the Commission to elevate the voices, experiences, needs, and leadership of women and girls in City Hall and our State House.”