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Monday, December 31, 2018

MIT張曙光八年磨一劍 水溶性膜蛋白有望改變醫藥市場

張曙光在MIT媒體實驗室中的辦公室接受採訪。
(周菊子攝)
          (Boston Orange 周菊子波士頓報導)做科研,最重要是有好奇心。MIT分子結構實驗室(Lab of Molecular Architecture)負責人張曙光,從一個沒唸過初中,高中的工農兵,成為博士,主管名校實驗室,辦過一家市值12億美元公司,將推出幡改藥物發現服務的QTY密碼,全因喜歡打破砂鍋問到底。            
2007年,張曙光創辦前沿分子基金會(Molecular Frontiers Foundation)”,設立前沿分子調查獎(Molecular Frontiers Inquiry Prize) “,也為鼓勵青少年,問出一片新人生。今年還首度在美國舉行頒獎禮。
             張曙光1953年在四川成都出生,從小愛問,阿兵哥父親和大學生母親答不勝答,打發他自己買書找答案。到了1966年文革,他當工農兵,沒上初中,高中,被送進四川豬鬃廠工作,還一樣愛發問。這時廠裡見豬鬃利潤太低,出口越多賠越多,又看他愛問,決定送他去上四川大學生物化學系,學習怎麼把豬鬃分解成胺基酸,變成能賺錢的產品。
張曙光2月9日將出席CABA會議。
(檔案照片/周菊子攝)
             這機緣,讓他成為中國重辦高考前的最後一屆工農兵。剛開始門門課不及格,三年以後畢業時,拿B
他還記得很清楚,那是1979年的時候,有次上課,他問老師,為什麼蛋白的DNA和多醣纖維素都是右旋的,有沒左旋的。老師說不知道。沒想到就在那年的12月,Alexander Rich自然(Nature)”上發表了一篇文章,說有左旋蛋白。這讓他下決心,將來一定要到美國,不能做Alexander Rich的學生,也要做他的博士後。
             在那個年代,出國不容易,他花了一年時間申請,還走自費留學的路。幸好他有親戚在美國奧勒岡州波特蘭市開餐館,讓他有機會一邊當洗碗工,一邊從零開始學英語,能說上幾句後,調到前台當侍應生,接受客人點菜,但到底英文有限,常弄錯挨罵,日子並不好過。
             就像當年沒上過初中,高中,也摸索著大學畢了業。27歲來到美國時,一句英文也不會的張曙光,全靠奮發自學,最後也拿到了加州大學聖芭芭拉分校的生物化學與分子化學博士學位。
1988年,他更實現心願來到MIT,一待迄今。從Alexsander Rich的博士後研究員做起,歷任生物系研究科學家,生物醫學工程中心首席研究科學家,副主任。2012擔任分子結構實驗室負責人。
1991年時,Bristol Myers Squibb想挖角,給他三倍於MIT的薪水,配兩個研究員,要請他做實驗室負責人,但他認為老師說的一旦進入業界,想做什麼實驗,將不由他自主很有道理,於是拒絕了,繼續留在MIT專心做研究。
             今年(2018)10月,他在哈佛大學的愛默生廳,給了一場演講,題目是好奇心驅動的發現對知識經濟的影響(Curiosity-driven disvoveries and the impact on knowledge-based economy)”。今年11月,他又應上海科協大講壇暨科普中國-科技前沿大師談之邀,以好奇心驅使科學研究-從神奇的分行現象說起,做主題演講。
張曙光的老師Alexander Rich等著名學者。
             張曙光指出,當初他在Alexsander Rich的實驗室,研究做啤酒,麵包,發酒釀的酵母。無意中發現,蛋白中的一段短肽放在水裏,看起來仍然如水,但加了點鹽後,就能看見了。跑去問Francis Crick。然後用電鏡看,發現是納米纖維。於是在1993年發表文章之前,先申請專利。
             談到這,張曙光得意的說,MIT和哈佛的不同就在這兒,鼓勵校內師生申請專利。1992年他發現這短肽自組裝時,根本不知道有什麼用,而申請專利所費不貲,至少要好幾萬元,於是跑去問校內出名的創業教授Robert Langer,要不要申請。結果Robert Langer說,第一,這是胺基酸,第二,這是來自生物的東西,第三,沒有害處,應該申請。
             結果申請後,只不過一年半,就有一家大公司花120萬元來買了專利權。
             他自己卻還是好幾年過去後,才明白短肽自組裝是怎麼回事。短肽序列有六個納米,在水裡加點鹽,就成了99%99.5%都是水,1%0.5%是蛋白的水凝膠。經實驗證明,因為這短肽可以自組裝,能用於在身體裏培養細胞,重生組織,神經,還能讓人在510秒之內止血,目前已發展出的產品,包括手術用止血劑。
             張曙光說,這個短肽自組裝的意外發現,如果不是他在MIT,如果不是申請了專利,恐怕就浪費掉了。
後來他和指導老師Alexander Rich組建3D Matrix公司,做多類肽水凝膠的商業化嘗試,共拿過160萬元投資,經歷兩次瀕臨倒閉危機,為取得資金繼續做市場化研發,他們把主要股權賣給一名日本投資者。 201110月上市,2013年的市值已超過10億美元。
年輕時的張曙光(左)為追隨名師來到MIT。(周菊子攝)
             做為公司創辦人,張曙光原本持有40%股權,只是經營期間,為求經費,不斷稀釋,上市時,他的持股只剩1%。但他很滿意,因為他的研究有了美好結果。他從完全不懂開始摸索的科學研究項目,如今不但商業化成為產品,還上市了,
             今年八月,Estee Lauder請他去演講,也是因為這短肽自組裝,有可能應用於細胞重生,修補人的皮膚,商機潛力無窮。
張曙光創辦的”前沿分子調查獎
(Molecular Frontiers Inquiry Prize) “會頒給
得獎青年一個這樣的獎章。(周菊子攝)
             不過,張曙光認為,如今全世界已有上千個實驗是在繼續做短肽自組裝的相關研究,他拿得起,放得下2011年起轉型做把膜蛋白改成水溶性蛋白的研究時,也早在還只有概念之際,就申請了專利。就如同摩斯密碼(Morse Code),電腦密碼,基因密碼都對世界造成巨大經濟效益影響,他相信自己正在做的QTY密碼,和蛋白設計有直接關係,可把膜蛋白改成水溶性蛋白的研究,也將對世界有重大影響。
張曙光已經把自己這新發明拿出來開公司了。這次他是把研發成果交給發明蘋果鍵盤的David Levy來經營,自己只做顧問。投資人包括一名日本人,兩名分別來自中國北京及無錫的年輕人。成立的Oh2公司,要把疏水性膜蛋白做成水溶性膜蛋白,變成可以應用於檢測環境汙染的傳感器,可診斷腫瘤或鑑定血液樣本中轉移性癌細胞等等的醫藥。一旦成功研發出產品,市場規模估計幾十億元。
             張曙光在學術研究上先於1990年證明了有左旋Z-DNA,再於1993年發現並證明短肽可以自組裝,而後成功地把技術轉移成商品,並於2006年贏得奧地利總統Heinz Fische親自頒發的Wilhelm Exner獎章。
迄今張曙光仍是唯一得過該獎的華人。MIT也稱短肽自組裝是近70年來該校15項最重要科研成果之一。
            2006同年,張曙光還獲選為古根漢(Guggenheim)基金會學者,其後陸續獲選為奧地利科學院院士,美國醫藥及生物工程院院士,美國國家發明學會院士,上海交大榮譽教授。
             張曙光頗為感慨地指出,MIT的確是個很特殊的地方,不但是媒體實驗室主任Joi Ito連大學都沒畢業,他的研究團隊中也有一名學生,連小學都沒上過,MIT卻收了他做碩士生,現在已升讀博士。
張曙光從2011年轉型,換研究主題,到現在,八年磨一劍的只發表了一篇文章。他說,要是在其他地方,恐怕自己早已被開除了,可是MIT給了他這樣的自由與信任,給了他堅持就是勝利的空間,也所以在MITGet paid to play的玩笑話。迄今發表過160篇科學論文,被引用過27,000次的他,期許中國科研,將來也能往這方向邁進,給膽子大,能堅持不懈的年輕人機會,打造創新。

麻州2020會計年度財政預估293億美元

Heffernan, Lovely, Sánchez, Announce Consensus Revenue Forecast of $29.299B for Fiscal Year 2020
Projected state tax revenue growth set at 2.7%

BOSTON — Secretary of Administration and Finance Michael J. Heffernan, Senate Ways and Means Vice Chair Joan B. Lovely (D-Salem), and House Ways and Means Chair Jeffrey Sánchez (D-Jamaica Plain) today announced a consensus revenue forecast for Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) of $29.299 billion, representing 2.7% growth in state tax revenue over adjusted Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19) projected revenue of $28.529 billion.
The adjusted FY19 revenue collections estimate incorporates a $200 million upgrade of projected state tax revenues announced by Secretary Heffernan today, which is based upon current year-to-date revenues and economic data. Approximately $100 million is estimated to be from capital gains above the annual threshold and would be transferred to the Stabilization Fund, which now stands at more than $2 billion, and other off-budget funds. Both the adjusted FY19 estimate and the FY20 estimate are exclusive of marijuana sales and excise taxes, which are under review.
The consensus revenue forecast is the basis on which the Baker-Polito Administration, the House, and the Senate will build their respective FY20 budget recommendations.
Pursuant to Section 5B of Chapter 29 of the General Laws, the three officials above convene every year to establish a joint revenue forecast by January 15th. In addition to conferring with each other, the Secretary and Chairs held a public hearing in December 2018 to receive testimony from the Department of Revenue, the State Treasurer’s Office, the Public Employment Retirement Administration Commission, and independent, local economists from area foundations and universities on tax revenue.
“The FY20 forecast reflects modest growth in the Commonwealth’s economy, consistent with testimony we have heard from economic experts,” said Administration and Finance Secretary Michael J. Heffernan. “Reaching agreement on a consensus revenue forecast is a critical first step in developing a fiscally responsible budget for FY20, and I am grateful for the close partnership of the House and Senate Ways and Means leadership and their staff as we worked cooperatively throughout this process.”
“I am pleased that the Senate, House, and Baker-Polito Administration have come to an agreement on a revenue figure for the FY20 budget,” said Senator Joan B. Lovely (D-Salem), Vice Chair of Senate Ways and Means. “Given the Consensus Revenue testimony that forecast more moderate growth for the next fiscal year, I believe that this number will give us a firm foundation on which to craft a budget that makes necessary prudent investments in both the needs of the people of the Commonwealth and the Rainy Day Fund.”

“Through engaging economists and other fiscal experts, we’ve come to a responsible FY20 Consensus Revenue agreement that sets the stage for the next budget process,” said House Committee on Ways and Means Chair Representative Jeffrey Sánchez (D-Jamaica Plain). “Thank you to Secretary Heffernan and Vice Chair Lovely for the thoughtful collaboration in coming to this agreement. It’s through this cooperation that Massachusetts continues its strong economic growth and is why Massachusetts is well positioned for what may lie ahead.”

Additional details:
  • The consensus revenue estimate for FY20 assumes that another income tax trigger will go into effect January 1, 2020, lowering the state’s personal income tax from 5.05% to 5.00%.
  • Of the forecasted $29.299 billion in FY20 state tax revenues, an estimated $1.481 billion is projected to be capital gains tax revenue, of which $221 million will be transferred to the Stabilization Fund ($199 million net of transfers to other long term liability funds).
  • The consensus revenue estimate for FY20 and the adjusted FY19 revenue projection do not include revenue from marijuana sales or excise taxes. With the industry at its beginning stages, the three branches decided to set aside the marijuana forecast so that the Administration, House, and Senate can make independent decisions on marijuana revenue for FY20 based on available information as each goes to print their budget proposals.
  • The agreement also includes the following statutorily required off-budget transfers that are mandated by current law:
    • $2.841 billion transferred to the pension fund, a $233 million increase over the FY19 contribution, which keeps the Commonwealth on schedule to fully fund its pension liability by 2036
    • $1.077 billion for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA)
    • $917 million for the Massachusetts School Building Authority (SBA)
    • $25 million for the Workforce Training Fund

After $5.080 billion in off-budget transfers, the Secretary and Committee Chairs agree that $24.219 billion will be the maximum amount of tax revenue available for the budget in FY20, absent statutory changes.
M.G.L. Chapter 29 Section 7H ½ requires the Secretary and the House and Senate Committees on Ways and Means to jointly develop a potential gross state product (PGSP) growth benchmark for the ensuing calendar year. The PGSP growth benchmark is used by the Health Policy Commission to establish the Commonwealth’s health care cost growth benchmark.
The three bodies have reached an agreement that the PGSP figure for calendar year 2019 will remain 3.6%. PGSP is a measure of the “full employment” output of the Commonwealth’s economy and reflects long-term trends in the economy rather than fluctuations due to the business cycle and, as a result, is meant to be fairly stable from year to year.

MAYOR WALSH ANNOUNCES APPOINTMENTS TO BOSTON SCHOOL COMMITTEE

MAYOR WALSH ANNOUNCES APPOINTMENTS TO BOSTON SCHOOL COMMITTEE
Quoc Tran appointed; Jeri Robinson reappointed
BOSTON - Monday, December 31, 2018 - Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced the appointment of Quoc Tran and reappointment of Jeri Robinson to the Boston School Committee, the governing body of the Boston Public Schools (BPS). Tran is currently the secretariat deputy director of the Office of Diversity and Civil Rights at the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services. Robinson has been a member of the Boston School Committee since 2014, and recently retired from her role as vice president of Early Childhood Initiatives at the Boston Children's Museum. The swearing-in ceremony will take place on Monday, January 7, 2019 at 4:00 p.m. at the Bolling Building.

"Quoc Tran is a great addition to the Boston School Committee. His experience as a civil rights attorney and a community leader will add a unique and crucial perspective to the group," said Mayor Walsh. "I'm also proud to reappoint Jeri Robinson to the Committee, who for the last four years worked and advocated tirelessly to create opportunities for our students. I thank all members of the School Committee who have served in this important role, and look forward to reviewing applications for the remaining vacancy, and encourage those who are interested in serving on the Committee to apply by the January 7, 2019 deadline."

Dr. Miren Uriarte stepped down from the Boston School Committee In December 2018, ending almost four years of service on the Committee. The Citizens Nominating Panel is currently accepting applications from candidates interested in filling the remainder of her term, which expires on December 31, 2019. The Panel is expected to submit a list of nominees to the Mayor by January 16.

The seven-member Boston School Committee is responsible for defining the vision, mission and goals of the Boston Public Schools; establishing and monitoring the annual operating budget; hiring, managing and evaluating the Superintendent; and setting and reviewing district policies and practices to support student achievement.

"We are pleased to welcome Quoc Tran to the Boston School Committee, and look forward to working with him on the important issues facing our students, educators and schools in 2019 and beyond," said Michael Loconto, Chair of the Boston School Committee. "These appointments come at crucial time as we continue moving forward on key issues that will enhance learning opportunities for students, including the continued roll out of BuildBPS facilities upgrades and the hiring of a new permanent superintendent. On behalf of the School Committee, we thank all members for their service and are excited to continue this work together."  

In his current role at the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services, Tran develops and implements diversity and inclusion strategies for over 22,000 employees, and creates diversity and affirmative action plans to retain a diverse workforce. Prior to this role, he was the executive director of the Vietnamese American Civic Association (VACA), where he managed all operations of the organization related to serving the social and public assistance needs of Vietnamese refugees and immigrants. Tran was a BPS high school teacher for six years and is parent of Boston Latin School students. He holds a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering and a master's degree in education from Northeastern University, and a doctoral degree in law from Suffolk University. He currently resides in Dorchester.

"I am very honored to have received Mayor Walsh's trust and confidence in appointing me to this very important Boston School Committee," said Quoc Tran. "I look forward to working alongside all other Committee members in ensuring the highest quality possible that our city's school system deserves."  

Jeri Robinson, first appointed by Mayor Walsh in 2014, brings more than 40 years of experience in teaching and consulting in the fields of early childhood and museum education. She recently retired from her role at the Boston Children's Museum, where she developed programs and outreach to further the Museum's early childhood agenda, seeking new sources of funding for educational initiatives and developing current resources. She holds a bachelor's degree and master's degree in education, and an honorary doctorate in education from Wheelock College, and serves on numerous boards dealing with family, community, multicultural, and early childhood education issues. She lives in Dorchester.

The seven members of the School Committee are Boston residents appointed by the Mayor of Boston to serve four-year staggered terms. Mayor Walsh made these appointments based on a list of candidates recommended by a 13-member Citizens Nominating Panel composed of parents, teachers, principals, and representatives of business and higher education. Under the legislation that established the appointed School Committee, "the Mayor shall strive to appoint individuals who reflect the racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic diversity of the city."

For more information on the School Committee, please visit here

新英格蘭華人專業人士春晚2/9


BTBA 2019 first semina 1/6


ILF Civic Fellowship Program Deadline Extended from to Jan. 31, 2019



ILF Civic Fellowship Program Deadline Extended from Dec. 31, 2018 to Jan. 31, 2019


This is to let you know that the ILF’s Civic Fellowship Program has extended its application deadline from December 31, 2018 to January 31, 2019.
Every year, the International Leadership Foundation (ILF) identifies approximately 25 outstanding Asian Pacific American (APA) college students to spend 8 to 10 weeks interning at a federal agency in Washington D.C. during the summer. Students accepted into the program are known as Civic Fellows and will receive a stipend of $2,000 USD upon program completion. In addition to their full-time federal internships, they will attend professional development workshops and leadership training.  Fellows are responsible for their own travel, housing, and living expenses. Based on the interests and majors of selected Civic Fellowship candidates, ILF will help place them with federal agencies and the congressional offices.
Undergraduate students of APA heritage are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be United States citizens, and current undergraduate sophomores, juniors, or seniors, with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Additional documents and application materials are required. To learn more or submit an application, visit www.ILFnational.org

About ILF

 

The International Leadership Foundation (ILF) is a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization that promotes the civic awareness, public involvement and economic effectiveness of the Asian Pacific American (APA) community. Our mission is to develop young leaders in the United States in the fields of public service, entrepreneurship and the international arena through a network of business and community leaders, and to expose emerging leaders in other Pacific Rim countries to the American perspective in business, education and policy. 

Learn more at www.ilfnational.org

Friday, December 28, 2018

麻州州長簽字 明年七月起Airbnb房東需繳稅


 (Boston Orange 周菊子波士頓報導)麻州州長查理貝克(Charlie Baker)(28)日大筆一揮,明年七月一日起,諸如愛彼迎(Airbnb)”等新興短期租宿業,將須接受法規管制並繳稅。
從鱈魚角(Cape Cod)的避暑屋,波士頓市的公寓住宅,到麻州西部的度假休憩地,麻州現在已經到處都有愛彼迎了。有關部門閉門商談數月,該怎麼處理這大受歡迎的行業後,終於有了結論。
麻州州長一旦簽署,將是制定一條全新法則,規定出租者須買保險,還必須在繳交州稅之外,可能得繳地方稅。麻州眾議會的一名主席,以及議員表示,他們的目標是到九月份時,麻州之內的所有的短期出租都辦了登記。
這次簽署法令,查理貝克很低調,沒有正式儀式。他稱許議員們送給他一份折衷版法案,考慮到他關心的,不宜向那些只偶而把住家租出去的人徵稅。
            麻州眾議會和參議會議員們在七月時通過了類似的法案,包括要像短期出租徵稅,但查理貝克把它擋了下來,稱那些規定對一年只把自己住家租出去幾晚的人來說太繁瑣了。
            鑑於本期議會的會期將於12日結束,議員們在本月初提出了一個妥協版本,把州長辦公室的提議包括了進去。現在新法要求所有的出租房屋者登記並買保險,還得和酒店一樣繳交5.7%的稅,但一年只把自己的住家租出去不到14天的人,可豁免於此規定。
有關人員估計,這一徵稅行動,每年可為州政府帶來2500萬元。
該法也容許地方市鎮自行徵收地方稅,最高6%波士頓最高可徵6.5%。偶而出租的屋主,也可豁免於此規定。
在波士頓,劍橋市,以及其他支持麻州會議中心局的城市,還會向擁有多個單位的屋主徵收額外稅款。不過那會是在位於南波士頓的波士頓會議展覽中心清償債券後。
            紐約及舊金山市都用短期出租登記來管理這一行業,但這一法令將使麻州成為要求所有屋主登記的第一個州。那也是近幾個月來在稅率之外的討論,爭議重點之一。
            酒店業集團及住宅擁護者推動完整登記,哪將容許人們看到他們的鄰居是否把房子或公寓短期出租了。劍橋市及波士頓市在這同時,已通過了他們自己的管轄法,但表示州政府的全州登記有利於他們執法。
愛彼迎已向聯邦法院控告波士頓市政府,以推翻波市府的法令,也正抗拒州政府的提案,指全州登記作法可能危及出租者隱私。

MA Sec. of Housing and Economic Development Mike Kennealy sweared in

Governor Baker Swears in New Secretary of the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development

Governor Charlie Baker swears in Secretary Mike Kennealy.

BOSTON – Today, Governor Charlie Baker swore in newly appointed Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Mike Kennealy. Secretary Kennealy served as Assistant Secretary for Business Growth in the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development since 2015. In that role, he has played a critical part in advancing the administration’s strategy for job creation and business development throughout Massachusetts. Secretary Kennealy is preceded by Jay Ash, who served in the Baker-Polito Administration for four years, where he helped lead the administration’s economic development strategy and effort to transition homeless families out of hotels.

For more information on the appointment of Secretary Kennealy, click here.


About Secretary Mike Kennealy:

In early 2015, Mike Kennealy joined the Baker-Polito Administration as Assistant Secretary for Business Growth in the Executive Office of Housing & Economic Development. As Assistant Secretary, Kennealy has played an integral role in advancing the administration’s strategy for job creation and business development across the entire Commonwealth and has provided leadership in key sectors, including serving as co-chair of the board of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center.

Kennealy combines a successful track record in the private sector with a strong commitment to the public good. He began his career in private equity at TA Associates, a Boston-based firm. In 1997, he joined Spectrum Equity, a private equity firm founded in 1994 with offices in Boston and San Francisco. During his more than 15 years at Spectrum, he helped grow the firm to become an established market leader with nearly $5 billion in assets under management and investments in over 100 high-growth internet, software and information services companies. After his career in private equity, Kennealy spent two years as Special Advisor to the Receiver at Lawrence Public Schools, where he worked with the state-appointed superintendent/receiver on strategic and financial initiatives to support the school district’s turnaround plan.

Kennealy and his family live in Lexington, Massachusetts, where they have been highly involved in town government, education and youth sports. He has served on the Board of Trustees of St. John’s Prep in Danvers since 2009 and currently serves as Chairman, and he serves on the Board of Visitors for The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences at Dartmouth College.

Kennealy received a A.B. in Government from Dartmouth College and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

波士頓市長向市民匯報一年成果

2018 Year In Review
Mayor Walsh at the Macy's coat drive with one of his new friends receiving a coat for the winter.
A Message from the Mayor
Dear Friends,

As 2018 comes to a close, I wanted to share some of my top moments from the year. Being Mayor has provided me with some incredible opportunities to impact the lives of every Bostonian. I am incredibly grateful and humbled to serve as your Mayor.

Thank you for your continued support and all the contributions each of you make to our city.

Lorrie and I wish you and your families a happy, healthy and safe 2019!

-Marty
Beginning my Second Term
This year couldn't have started in a more exciting way. Being sworn in as your Mayor for a second term continues to be such a honor. I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve the city I love.
Mayor Walsh being sworn in as his Mother, Lorrie and Former Vice President Joe Biden looks on.
Mayor Walsh and other mayors from around the country during the U.S. Conference of Mayors at the Pride Parade this summer.
Showcasing Boston: Hosting over 250 mayors from around the country
In June, we hosted the annual meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, bringing over 250 mayors from around the country together, giving us an opportunity to show the country the innovative work we are doing in Boston. One of my favorite moments from the conference was when 150 mayors joined me in marching in our Pride Parade. It was so much fun and we were excited to show our support for the LGBTQ community.
Helping Every Bostonian Find a Home
As of this fall we've housed 596 chronically homeless people in need of a permanent home and we're not stopping until every Bostonian has a place to call their own. This year we launched the Boston's Way Home Fund to raise $10 million to build supportive housing for 200 people experiencing chronic homelessness. Read the story of Brian DeSilva who was just one of the people we were proud to help this year.
Mayor Walsh cutting the ribbon at the new Liberty House for formerly homeless youth.
Mayor Walsh standing with survivors and many activists in October at one of the many protests he attended this year.
Standing up to Hate
This year Bostonians once again showed up to make their voices heard against hate. I was proud to stand with survivors of sexual assault, NARAL, Planned Parenthood, the ACLU, our transgender friends and our immigrant neighbors and many others as we continue to hold this president and his administration accountable for their harmful policies. The fighting spirit of many Bostonians gives me a lot of hope.
Welcoming Willie Gross as our New Police Commissioner
This summer, I was honored to swear inWillie Gross as Boston's 42nd Police Commissioner. Commissioner Gross is the first African American to hold the post. A historic day for Boston.
Mayor Walsh and Commissioner Gross at his swearing in this summer.
Mayor Walsh with his new "builder in training" friend at a housing groundbreaking earlier this year.
Building for the Future
We can't solve Boston's housing crisis alone. We are working hard to build in, but we must partner with surrounding communities to build more housing everywhere. This fall I was proud to partner with fourteen other Greater Boston cities and towns to announce a new regional housing production goal to create 185,000 new units to meet the demands of a robust regional economy and a growing population in Greater Boston. We also increased Boston's housing goal this year from 53,000 to 69,000 by 2030.
Preparing for Climate Change
At the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Forum in October, we released "Resilient Boston Harbor," a plan that lays out strategies along Boston's 47-mile shoreline that will increase access and open space along the waterfront while better protecting the City from climate change.
Mayor Walsh touring the Boston Harbor Islands with environmental leaders.
Mayor Walsh with city leaders and health and human services leaders announcing the lawsuit.
Holding Big Pharma Accountable
In September, we filed a complaint in Suffolk Superior Court against opioid manufacturers, and distributors that have contributed to the opioid epidemic. Their misleading marketing and reckless dissemination of opioids have led to the deaths of more than 730 Boston residents since 2013. As part of the litigation, the City is seeking to recover both past and future damages and injunctive relief associated with addressing the opioid epidemic in Boston. We all have a role to play in ending the opioid epidemic, and pharmaceutical companies must do their part.
Opening the Dearborn STEM Academy
This August, we celebrated the opening of the Dearborn STEM Academy, the first newly-constructed BPS school building in 15 years. This beautiful new building will be able to accommodate 600 BPS students by 2020. This is just the beginning of the major investments we will continue to make in our schools throughout 2019 and beyond.
Mayor Walsh cutting the ribbon at the Dearborn School with Treasurer Deb Goldberg, students, faculty and community leaders in Roxbury.
Red Sox Manager Alex Cora with the 2018 World Series Trophy
Mayor Walsh in Puerto Rico with the Red Sox helping victims of Hurricane Maria. (photo credit toWBUR)
World Champions
The Boston Red Sox made us proud yet again. They couldn’t have achieved this success without the leadership of their new star manager, Alex Cora who is much more than a baseball manager. He is an advocate for immigrant communities — here in Boston, and in his home of Puerto Rico. I was honored to travel with Alex and the entire team to Puerto Rico to help with the Hurricane Maria relief. Winning another championship never gets old. We had a lot of fun celebrating their victory this fall.
Thank you, Boston, for another great year. Wishing you and your families a very happy and healthy 2019!