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Thursday, May 31, 2018

新節奏樂隊6/16舉辦慶父親節餐舞會


Governor Baker Signs $1.8 Billion Affordable Housing Bill to Increase Housing Production, Preserve Housing Affordability

Governor Baker Signs $1.8 Billion Affordable Housing Bill to Increase Housing Production, Preserve Housing Affordability
Legislation ensures continued funding for effective affordable housing programs, and extends critical tax credits to diversify housing portfolio across the Commonwealth


州長辦公室提供
BOSTON – Today, Governor Charlie Baker signed An Act Financing the Production and Preservation of Housing for Low and Moderate Income Residents (H.4536), to ensure long-term support for the Baker-Polito Administration’s comprehensive efforts to increase the production of affordable housing, diversify the state’s housing portfolio, modernize public housing, preserve the affordability of existing housing and invest in new, innovative solutions to address Massachusetts’ rising demand for housing.

麻州住宅署副署長陳潔瀅致詞。(州長辦公室提供)
“This bill will help expand our administration’s commitment to ensuring residents across the Commonwealth have more access to quality, safe and affordable housing and economic development opportunities,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Municipalities, developers, and local housing authorities will be supported by a toolbox of flexible resources to create more affordable options and explore new avenues to meet a growing demand. We thank our partners in the Legislature for working with us to pass this legislation and look forward to our continued collaboration on the administration’s Housing Choice Bill to create even more affordable housing options.”

Today’s legislation authorizes $1.8 billion in new capital spending for the production and preservation of affordable housing for low- to moderate-income households, supportive housing and housing serving vulnerable populations. Additionally, the legislation authorizes $650 million for public housing modernization and redevelopment, as well as $45 million for capital improvements at Early Education and Care facilities. 

“Our administration continues to seek collaborative partnerships with communities to increase affordable and market-rate housing production across the Commonwealth, through this bill, our pending Housing Choice Initiative, affordable housing awards, the Workforce Housing Initiative and the Housing Development Incentive Program,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “The housing bond bill builds on these efforts, and we are proud to have worked collaboratively with our dedicated partners in the Legislature to ensure continued funding for critical housing programs.”

The administration’s first three capital budgets supported the creation or preservation of approximately 7,500 affordable housing units, provided $17.8 million to four public housing developments for comprehensive modernization of housing for seniors and individuals with disabilities and allowed the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCH) to award $150 million for deferred maintenance projects to more than 45,000 units of extremely low-income state public housing across 234 communities.

“Massachusetts’ growing economy has increased pressure on our housing market, creating challenges for families, communities, and employers’ ability to attract and retain talent,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash. “This housing bond bill provides tools to increase housing production, including extending the State Low-Income Housing Tax Credit and the Housing Development Incentive Program. These programs support the diverse needs for housing development, which together will help us achieve our goal of stronger, more inclusive Massachusetts economy.”

The bill signing took place in Boston’s Brighton neighborhood at the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg House, operated by Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly.

“Our goal is to ensure Massachusetts families and residents, despite their income, have access to safe, quality housing they can afford,” said Housing and Community Development Undersecretary Janelle Chan. “Housing, in particular housing affordable to the spectrum of households, drives economic development, supports vibrant and walkable downtowns, promotes neighborhood stability, and enables families and residents to thrive.”

“The Housing Bond Bill will continue to give the Commonwealth the tools it needs to continue confronting its housing challenges and produce and preserve the housing we need in a growing economy,” said MassHousing Executive Director Chrystal Kornegay. “The legislation will also allow MassHousing to increase the number of the Commonwealth’s residents who can have access to stable, quality housing. We thank the Legislature for their important leadership on this issue.”

“Preserving and producing affordable housing is central to sustaining the Commonwealth’s economic prosperity,” said Senator Boncore, Senate Chair Joint Committee on Housing. “This bond bill makes thoughtful and innovative investments that will serve as tools for municipalities and developers in the modernization and production of our state’s housing stock.”

“We are all well aware of the housing crisis in Massachusetts” said Representative Kevin G. Honan, chairman of the Joint Committee on Housing. “This Housing Bond Bill is a tangible commitment to affordable housing. The provisions of this bill are the tried and true affordable housing tools that are at our disposal. Through this bill, we will recommit ourselves to housing the elderly, disabled and homeless.”

“Today is a great day for the Commonwealth.  This bond bill will allow us to continue to make important investments in housing for years to come,” said Assistant Minority Leader Bradley Hill. “I am proud to have been a part of passing this legislation and am thankful to the Governor and Lt. Governor for their leadership.”

“The housing bond bill expands opportunities for children, seniors, people with disabilities, and families at risk of homelessness to find safe, healthy, and affordable homes,” said Rachel Heller, chief executive officer of Citizens’ Housing and Planning Association. “This legislation is the result of strong partnerships among advocates, the Legislature, and the Administration who worked together to pass the bill. As one of the first bond bills filed and passed this session, the Housing Bond Bill demonstrates that creating and preserving more affordable housing is a top priority in the Commonwealth.”

“Today’s signing of the $1.8 billion Housing Bond Bill reflects the collective determination of the Baker-Polito Administration, the Legislature and housing advocates to address the need for affordable housing in Massachusetts,” said Clark Ziegler, executive director of the Massachusetts Housing Partnership. “The combination of a strong state economy, high housing demand and low production has created one of the largest affordability gaps in the U.S.  More than 240,000 low-income individuals and families in Massachusetts now pay more than half of their income on rent.  Private housing production alone will not solve that problem. The programs authorized in this bill are one of the few ways we can close this gap. Congratulations to all those who worked so hard to address the Commonwealth’s housing needs.”

“It is an incredible honor for JCHE to host this historic bill signing,” said Amy Schectman, president and chief executive officer of Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly. “Prior bond bill funds have allowed us to build our award-winning supportive, affordable housing and these new funds will be vital to creating additional opportunities for older adults to age in community.  Kudos to Governor Baker and Chairmen Honan and Boncore for their brilliant leadership on this life-or-death issue.”

The housing bond bill includes:

·       State Low-Income Housing Tax Credit: Extends the state’s ability to commit $20 million per year in tax credits to affordable housing projects until 2025 and authorizes an additional $5 million per year in tax credits specifically to support preservation of existing affordable housing. Current law would cut the size of this tax credit to $10 million on January 1, 2020.

·       Housing Development Incentive Program: Extends the state’s ability to commit $10 million per year in tax credits to market-rate housing projects in Gateway Cities until 2024. Current law would cut the size of this tax credit in half, to $5 million, on January 1, 2019.

·       Accessory Dwelling Unit Construction and Landlord Modifications: Authorizes the use of home modification funding to construct accessory dwelling units for elders and individuals with disabilities and also authorizes up to 10% of the funds to be used to support landlord expenditures to modify units for tenants with disabilities, implementing recommendations of the administration’s Interagency Council on Housing and Homelessness.

·       MassHousing Services: Expands MassHousing’s authorizing language, to allow the quasi-public agency to provide contract administration, loan servicing, and other services to other states’ housing finance agencies.

·       Early Education and Out-of-School Time (EEOST) Capital Fund Facilities Improvement Grant Program: Provides funding to non-profit child care programs licensed by the Department of Early Education and Care to renovate, acquire, or construct high-quality child care program facilities that serve low-income families and communities, fostering high quality child care environments that support positive outcomes for children.

The Baker-Polito Administration is committed to meeting Massachusetts’ housing challenge through key investments, new initiatives and program reforms. With the addition of the FY19 capital plan, the Administration will have dedicated $884 million to housing from FY16 to FY19, an increase of $100 million over the previous four years’ capital plans.   

In December 2017, the administration announced the Housing Choice Initiative, a comprehensive proposal to create 135,000 new housing units by 2025. The initiative, which is currently pending before the Legislature, includes a new set of incentives and rewards for municipalities committed to sustainable housing growth in their communities. The Housing Choice Initiative is a multi-pronged effort that includes a program to designate Housing Choice municipalities and new technical assistance opportunities through MassHousing, in addition to proposed legislative changes that will help deliver smart, effective zoning at the local level.

Additionally, the highly effective MassWorks Infrastructure Program continues to be a key catalyst for housing production, supporting the creation of more than 3,000 housing units. The Open for Business Initiative will drive the production of more than 2,200 units of housing on state land. MassHousing’s $100 million Workforce Housing Initiative has advanced the development of 2,309 housing units across a range of incomes, including 616 workforce housing units. And, the administration reformed the Housing Development Incentive Program, which is on track to facilitate more than 900 new units in Gateway Cities.

首屆全美舞龍舞獅擂鼓大賽 德州,夏威夷、科州奪冠

第一屆全美舞龍舞獅大賽主席余翠梅致詞。(周菊子攝)
            (Boston Orange 周菊子麻州報導)美國龍獅總會(USDLDF)第一屆全美舞龍舞獅大賽,有來自七州的21隊,一連三日在麻州昆士市,波士頓市,激烈競比騰龍,舞獅,擂鼓技能,比賽期間所有團隊展現的團結合作互助精神,賽後的滿滿互道感謝聲,為舞龍舞獅界開啟了新風氣。
             三項比賽結果分別是,舞獅冠軍- 德州潮州會館麒麟龍獅團,擂鼓冠軍-夏威夷州昇勇(Sing Yung)龍獅團 ,舞龍冠軍 - 科羅拉多州亞裔傳統文化中心舞龍隊。
左起,昆士市長柯奇,麻州眾議員陳德基,波士頓市議員愛德華
費林,昆士市議員梁秀婷,美國龍獅總會會長牛勝等出席開幕式。
(周菊子攝)
第一屆全美舞龍舞獅大賽主席余翠梅致詞。(周菊子攝)
美國龍獅總會會長牛勝(右二),副會長余翠梅(右三)和國藝娛樂前主席
冼國林(左三),其弟子周定宇(左一),姚建剛(右一)。(周菊子攝)
 科羅拉多州亞洲傳統文化中心舞龍隊贏得舞龍冠軍。(周菊子攝)
華林太極功夫學校贏得舞龍亞軍,和師傅余翠梅(後右三),摩頓市長
葛帝生(Gary Christenson)合影。(周菊子攝)
巾幗醒獅隊的陳清音(左一)等裁判出列。(周菊子攝)
這三隊因這比賽結果,分別被封為獅王,鼓王,龍王。
大賽主席,統籌承辦這次比賽的華林派太極功夫學校創辦人余翠梅賽後難掩激動,直呼簡直不敢相信,有那麼多團隊克服各種困難,交通,食宿都自費的來波士頓三天,參加比賽。但最讓她欣慰的是,早年武術界似乎涇渭分明,幾乎不相往來,甚至自己團隊的道具都不讓其他團隊碰一下,但在這次比賽期間,各比賽隊伍卻互通有無,充分發揮團結互助精神,為武術界帶出嶄新風氣,讓人十分興奮。
美國龍獅總會(USDLDF)的第一屆全美舞龍舞獅大賽,在余翠梅與眾多支持者的合作下,打破了不少紀錄,首先是在麻州州政府大樓大堂(Grand Stair)舉行了一場點睛儀式,有麻州企業發展署助理署長范文南(Nam Pham),兩名麻州眾議員黃子安,陳德基,兩名現任市長,昆士的柯奇(Tom Koch),摩頓的葛帝生(Gary Christenson),一名前市長,費奇堡的黃素芬(Lisa Wong),昆士市議員梁秀婷,波士頓市議員愛德華費林(Ed Flynn),以及駐波士頓台北經濟文化辦事處處長徐佑典等等政要雲集,隆重十分,其次是參賽隊伍來自全美各地,參賽團隊總數量超高。
525日晚,美國龍獅總會和哈佛大學少林文化基金會合作,從香港邀來電影葉問一片出品人冼國林,在哈佛大學科學中心舉辦一場分享會,還請波士頓市前市長雷夫連(Ray Flynn)為開場致詞,更為這比賽增添了國際味。
奪得舞龍冠軍的科羅拉多州亞洲傳統文化中心師傅武衛風透露,他們17名隊員,最小的12歲,最大的45歲,其中8人搭飛機,另外9人分乘三輛卡車,載著大鼓,獅頭,旗幟等各種道具,從522日出發,每天連開11個小時,才抵達波士頓。然後安排食宿,即使盡量節約,整個行程也得花費五,六千元,對他們來說是不小的負擔,但這是第一屆全美舞龍舞獅大賽,意義非凡,辛苦得很值得。
余翠梅在賽後坦言,籌辦這場比賽確實非常不容易,不但耗資不菲,更不知道累積了多少人的辛苦付出,包括巾幗醒獅隊陳清音等所有8名現場評審,都按要求接受訓練,取得裁判資格,更不用提還有許多其他熱心人士與機構的贊助、支持,所以儘管最後結算,收支並不平衡,她仍然非常感恩,期許將來有更多人知道這舞龍舞獅大賽,順利傳承,發揚這中華文化。
美國龍獅總會是由威斯康辛州(Wiscosin)忠義國術館的牛勝( Nelson Ferreira)和科州亞裔傳統文化中心的武衛風(Phong Vo)2016年,參加馬來西亞雲頂世界武獅大賽,和國際舞龍舞獅聯盟(Dragon and Lion Dance Federation,簡稱DLDF)的第一副會長Leong Lik Thong晤談後,深受啟發,回美後和多個武館掌門人會商組成的協會。首屆執委會由牛勝擔任會長,武衛風及麻州的余翠梅任副會長,華盛頓州的Duc Cash Vo任秘書,夏威夷州的Kevin Lau任財政,內布拉斯加州的Ray Petersen任會員主任,德州的Mark Vuong任媒體及市場主任。黃瑞瑜擔任該會的法律顧問。(圖片已於5/29發表)
第一屆全美舞龍舞獅大賽評審包括:
Chief Judge - Ray Peterson - Nebraska
Examiner Judge - Mark Vuong - Texas
Scoring Judge - Eva Luong - California
波士頓市議員愛德華費林(左)頒發表揚狀給第一屆全美舞龍舞獅大賽
主席余翠梅。(周菊子攝)
Scoring Judge - Lou Immendorf - Wisconsin
Scoring Judge - Johnny Ton - Nebraska
Scoring Judge - Dustin Buxrude - Wisconsin
Scoring Judge - Nikki Strong - Milwaukee
Scoring Judge - Tuan Mai - Louisiana
Scoring Judge - Paul Liss – Wisconsin
Scoring Judge - Cheng Imm Tan - Massachusetts

比賽結果:
傳統舞獅比賽
舞獅冠軍德州潮州會館麒麟龍獅團。(主辦單位提供)
擂鼓冠軍-夏威夷州昇勇(Sing Yung)龍獅團 。(主辦單位提供)
Traditional Lion Dance Results:
1. Teo Chew Association: Unicorn Dragon and Lion Dance Team Omega (Texas)
2. Sing Yung Dragon & Lion Dance Association Team B (Hawaii)
3. Sing Yung Dragon & Lion Dance Association Team A (Hawaii)
4. Hung Gar Kung Fu and Lion Dance Academy (Massachusetts)
5. Wah Lum Malden & Quincy Team B (Massachusetts)
6. Wah Lum Malden & Quincy Team A (Massachusetts)
7. Team BLC (New York)
8. Nam Pai Academy Team A (Massachusetts)
9. Zhong Yi Kung Fu Association - Team Twin Dragon (Wisconsin)
10. Colorado Asian Cultural Heritage Center Team A (Colorado)
11. Calvin Chin's Martial Arts Academy Traditional Team A (Massachusetts)
12. Nam Pai Academy Team B (Massachusetts)
13. LQ LionDance - Team A (Washington)
14. Imperial Lion Dance Team (Massachusetts)
15. Zhong Yi Kung Fu Association - Team Buddha Gate (Wisconsin)
16. Calvin Chin's Martial Arts Academy Youth Team B (Massachusetts)
17. WYND - Lion and Dragon Dance Team (Massachusetts)
18. Colorado Asian Cultural Heritage Center Team B (Colorado)
19. Asian American Cultural Center Team Teriyaki (Massachusetts)


舞龍比賽:
舞龍。(主辦單位提供)
Dragon Dance Results:
1. Colorado Asian Cultural Heritage Center Dragon Dance Team (Colorado)
2. Wah Lum Malden & Quincy Dragon Team (Massachusetts)
3. WYND - Lion and Dragon Dance Team (Massachusetts)

擂鼓比賽:
舞龍冠軍。(主辦單位提供)
Drumming Competition Results:
1. Sing Yung Dragon and Lion Dance Association (Hawaii)
2. Wah Lum Temple Orlando (Florida)
3. Colorado Asian Cultural Heritage Center (Colorado)
4. Hawaii Lion Dance Association (Hawaii)
5. Hung Gar Kung Fu and Lion Dance Academy (Massachusetts)
6. LQ Lion Dance Team (Washington)
7. Xin Hui Choy Lee Fut (New York/Massachusetts)
8. Wah Lum Malden and Quincy (Massachusetts)
9. J.K. Wong Academy Lion Dance Troupe (Texas)
10. Nam Pai Kung Fu Academy (Massachusetts)
11. Penn Lions (Pennsylvania)
12. Zhong Yi Kung Fu Association (Wisconsin)
13. Po's Panda (Pennsylvania/Florida)

14. TCT Drumline (Texas)
舞龍。(主辦單位提供)
美國龍獅總會法律顧問黃瑞瑜為大會開幕做司儀。(周菊子攝)

黃雅亭(前左一)師傅率領的南派武館是麻州參賽團隊之一。(周菊子攝)



每個武術會館必不可少的旗幟。這是舞獅冠軍隊伍德州潮州會館
麒麟龍獅團的旗幟。(周菊子攝)





在表演中雙人相疊,幾乎已成必不可少的招式。(周菊子攝)



南派武館的旗幟。(周菊子攝)
華林派太極功夫學校旗幟。(周菊子攝)



Wednesday, May 30, 2018

紐英崙華史協會6/2 邀華人攜舊照片分享家族歷史






台灣將派歷年最大規模代表團訪波士頓參加2018 BIO


(Boston Orange周菊子波士頓報導)生物科技創新組織(BIO)將以創造歷史為主題,於64日至7日在波士頓舉行第25BIO國際會議。台灣行政院政委吳政忠也將率歷年來最大規模,約250人的台灣代表團出席。
BIO台灣代表團最近在台灣召開了行前記者會,說明這次到波士頓在BIO會議中設台灣館,將有25家廠商,擺30餘個攤位,並以台灣擅長的精準醫療、智慧醫材做參展主軸,展現台灣研發能量。
臺灣館的參展廠商,主要分醫藥成果,農業生技,以及醫療產品等三個類別。
醫藥成果類,有永昕生物醫藥、台灣浩鼎、台灣微脂體、善笙生技、新穎生醫、資元堂生技、竟天生技、昱星生技、康霈生技、台康生技、藥華醫藥、德英生技、健永生技、群泰生技等共14家廠商參展。
農業生技類,有亞果生醫、寰宇生技、京冠生技3家廠商代表。
醫療產品類,有華碩展出醫療數據平台、Funique及智慧賦能醫療(Medical AI)展出VR影像醫材。
台北市政府將首次與中央政府攜手,輔導台灣東洋、彥臣生技、遠東生技、茂英基因、唯醫生技等5家新創業者來參展。
台灣櫃買中心也將首次組團,來波士頓辦說明會,以吸引國際生技業者到台灣上市。
據悉,吳政忠此行還將拜訪默克,默沙東等大公司,以為台灣生物科技產業的國際合作牽線。
BIO會議期間,台灣團除了參展,團隊中的財團法人生物技術開發中心(DCB)將與新英格蘭玉山科技協會(MJNE)合作,63日在哈佛大學醫學院的Joseph B. Martin 會議中心舉辦「臺灣生技商機論壇 (Taiwan Bio Forum) 」,以「醫療保健無國界(Healthcare Innovation Beyond Borders) 」為主題,並針對「數位轉型及精準醫療(Digital Transformation & Precision Medicine)」,介紹臺灣的數位健康、精準醫療及臨床試驗能量、合作方式、資本市場以及產業趨勢。
65日下午四點,經濟部生技醫藥產業發展推動小組將在波士頓會議展覽中心內舉行臺灣館開幕式。該小組主任吳忠勳,行政院吳政忠政委、駐波士頓台北經濟文化辦事處處長徐佑典將依序致詞。
66日下午四點半至四點四十五分,在BIO大會的「環球創新樞紐(Global Innovation Hub)」中,生技研究園區創服育成中心助理執行長詹益鑑將介紹臺灣生技研發現況與產業合作機會。
BIO台灣團表示,組團參加BIO是政府構建五加二創新產業的重要國外拓展活動之一。

AG HEALEY LEADS MULTISTATE COALITION OPPOSING TRUMP ADMINISTRATION’S ROLL BACK OF CONTRACEPTIVE COVERAGE MANDATE

AG HEALEY LEADS MULTISTATE COALITION OPPOSING TRUMP ADMINISTRATION’S ROLL BACK OF CONTRACEPTIVE COVERAGE MANDATEAmicus Brief Filed in Ninth Circuit in Support of Lawsuit Led by California

            BOSTON – Attorney General Maura Healey led a coalition of 16 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief strongly opposing the Trump Administration’s decision to roll back the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that employers include birth control coverage in their health insurance plans.

The amicus brief, filed Tuesday afternoon with the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, supports California, Delaware, Maryland, New York and Virginia’s lawsuit seeking to stop the federal government from implementing new regulations that authorize most employers with a religious or moral objection to contraception to block their employees, and their employees’ dependents, from receiving health insurance coverage for contraceptive care and services. The federal government appealed the case to the Ninth Circuit after the district court issued a nationwide injunction stopping the rules from being implemented.

“These regulations are a direct attack on women’s health care and their right to access no-cost and reliable birth control from the provider of their choice,” said AG Healey. “My colleagues and I will continue to stand for a woman’s basic right to make decisions about her own health care. Employers cannot take that right away simply because they disagree with contraception.”

Since the ACA was enacted in 2010, most employers who provide health insurance coverage to their employees have been required to include coverage for contraception, at no cost to the employee. As a result of the ACA, more than 55 million women in the United States, including 1.4 million in Massachusetts, have access to a range of FDA-approved methods of birth control, including the longest-acting and most effective, with no out-of-pocket costs.

            In the brief, the state attorneys general argue that the regulations threaten the health and wellbeing as well as the economic stability of hundreds of thousands of residents by depriving them of contraception coverage. They also contend that this will then force their states to spend millions of dollars to provide their residents with replacement contraceptive care and services.

            “Contraception reduces the risk of unintended pregnancies, adverse pregnancy outcomes, and other negative health consequences,” the attorneys general wrote in the brief. “And by enhancing women’s control over their bodies, contraception gives them the power to choose if and how they pursue educational, employment, and familial opportunities.”
           
On the same day the rules were issued in October 2017, AG Healey filed suitover the roll back of the contraceptive coverage mandate. The Massachusetts case has been appealed to the First Circuit.

In December 2017, California, Delaware, Maryland, New York and Virginia secured a nationwide preliminary injunction. The district court ruled that the regulations violated the Administrative Procedure Act. In a separate case, Pennsylvania also successfully obtained a nationwide injunction. Pennsylvania’s case is currently pending in the Third Circuit.

AG Healey successfully advocated last year for the passage of the Contraceptive ACCESS law, An Act Relative to Advancing Contraceptive Coverage and Economic Security in our State. The law requires all state-regulated plans to provide coverage without cost-sharing for all unique forms of FDA-approved contraceptives, allows doctors to prescribe a 12-month supply of contraceptives, and helps eliminate barriers to timely access to emergency contraceptives.

Joining AG Healey in filing this amicus brief are the attorneys general of Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and the District of Columbia.

This amicus brief was handled by Assistant Attorneys General Jonathan Burke of AG Healey’s Civil Rights Division and Julia Kobick of AG Healey’s Administrative Law Division, with assistance from Jonathan Miller, Chief of AG Healey’s Public Protection and Advocacy Bureau, and Legal Analyst Elizabeth Carnes Flynn of AG Healey’s Health Care Division.

波市公校2018高中畢業致詞生 五名華裔

Mayor, School Committee Chairperson and Superintendent Honor 36 Valedictorians From the Boston Public Schools Class of 2018
District Celebrates 20th Annual Valedictorians Luncheon
BOSTON — Wednesday, May 30, 2018 — Thirty-six high school valedictorians from the Boston Public Schools (BPS) were honored yesterday at the 20th Annual BPS Valedictorians Luncheon at the Boston Harbor Hotel.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh, Boston School Committee Chairperson Michael Loconto, and BPS Superintendent Tommy Chang recognized the valedictorians for their incredible accomplishments during a ceremony emceed by WGBH television and radio host and commentator Callie Crossley.

"I’m proud of what the class of 2018 says about our city. The 36 scholars sitting before me paint a picture of Boston,” said Mayor Walsh. “Some of you were born in our hardworking neighborhoods. Some of your stories started on the other side of the world. No matter where your stories began, you all represent the incredible promise of this city.”

This year’s valedictorians were born in ten different countries. Nearly half of the valedictorians are “home grown” BPS students, or have attended BPS schools from kindergarten through 12th grade. Forty-two percent were born outside the US. Another 47% will be the first in their families to attend college.

“This event highlights the rich diversity of our city,” said School Committee Chairperson Loconto. “Whether you grew up with a Boston accent, or are a newcomer who learned English as a second language, you are part of the fabric of this community, and you make us proud.”

The Boston Foundation, Eastern Bank, Shah Family Foundation, and Steward Health Care were the major sponsors of the ceremony. Any proceeds will benefit the City of Boston Scholarship Fund.

“These students have all worked incredibly hard to get to where they are now, with such bright futures ahead of them,” said Superintendent Chang. “I’m more certain than ever that the young people of this city are not just the leaders of tomorrow, but the leaders of today.”

Tyler Luong of Boston Arts Academy (BAA) provided this year’s valedictorian’s address.

“Do you want to become a leader after you’ve claimed the top as your own, to know that you’ll be moving forward while others fail and stay behind? Or do you want to lead your peers to the top, make sure that no one gets left behind?” BAA’s top student asked his fellow valedictorians. “This label that we’ve all worked so hard for shows that we are capable of becoming future leaders of our world. So the next time we’re expected to climb a tree, let’s do it together.”

The BPS Valedictorians Luncheon was first held at the Parkman House in 1999. Its success has enabled the event to grow to a larger venue to include BPS families, staff, and partners from Boston’s higher education, business, and philanthropic communities.

The biographies for the valedictorians of the BPS Class of 2018 follow:

Another Course to College
Christopher Lara of Hyde Park

Christopher is a reflective and focused young man whose humility and down-to-earth nature belie his academic gifts and unshakeable work habits. He is an effective communicator with a curious mind. This fall, Christopher will attend UMass Lowell where he will be the first person in his family to attend college.

Boston Adult Technical Academy
Djine Marlly Alexis of Roslindale

Djine moved to the United States from Haiti just two years ago. She quickly found a new home at BATA, where she has persevered and grown in her academic capabilities and her self-confidence. Djine will attend UMass Boston where she will be the first person in her family to attend college. She plans to pursue a career in nursing.

Boston Arts Academy
Tyler Luong of Dorchester

Tyler was born and raised in Boston and has spent his entire academic career in the Boston Public Schools. He is a talented pianist whose passion for the arts has served him well as the top student at Boston Arts Academy. Both of Tyler’s sisters are alums of BAA, and his sister Luna was BAA’s valedictorian in 2014. Tyler has earned a Posse Scholarship to Bucknell University.

Boston Community Leadership Academy
Bismary Taveras Rosario of Dorchester

Bismary emigrated from the Dominican Republic just two years before arriving at BCLA. Bismary persevered and has since earned a proficiency level of 5.1 out of 6 on the state English Language Proficiency test. She enjoys tennis, volleyball, and dance, and is an avid reader. Bismary’s hard work and determination has earned her a full scholarship to Northeastern University.

Boston Day and Evening Academy
Tania Feliz of Dorchester

Tania struggled at her previous high school before finding a home at BDEA, where she graduated last April with a perfect 4.0 GPA! Last year, she participated in an internship at Vertex Pharmaceuticals and will do so again this coming summer. This fall, she will study molecular biology at Bryn Mawr College, where she has earned a Posse Scholarship.

Boston Green Academy
Aleksandr Gritsinin of Dorchester

Alex emigrated from Uzbekistan in 2015 with a minimal understanding of English. After spending a year in UMass Boston’s intensive ESL program, Alex enrolled at Boston Green Academy and has become an integral part of the BGA community. He was a driving force behind the BGA community garden, which ultimately earned him the BIDMC Environmental Champion Student Award. Alex will attend Northeastern University and plans to pursue a career in environmental sustainability.

Boston International High School
Ardit Briskaj of East Boston

Ardit emigrated with his family from Albania 2015. When he’s not doing school work, Ardit enjoys learning Romanian and reading facts about other countries. He plans to pursue a career in computer science because he believes that technology helps him better understand the world around him. Ardit is headed to UMass Lowell, where he will be the first person in his family to attend college.

Boston Latin Academy
Ambria Coakley of Roslindale

Ambria Coakley is not only an impressive scholar, but a truly exemplary student leader within the BLA community. Ambria has a passion for sciences, which was reinforced through courses like AP biology, and through her internship experience through Project Success at Harvard Medical School. She aspires to become a doctor and supply medical care to those who need it most, perhaps through Doctors Without Borders. Ambria is elated to be attending Spelman College in the fall, where she will study pre-med.

Boston Latin School
Jonathan Yuan of Fenway-Kenmore

Jonathan is an A+ student who has challenged himself with an overload of AP courses, excelling in all of them. He has a passion for the classics, and competes in classical competitions that test his knowledge of Latin and mythology. Jonathan is also a dedicated musician who plays both the tuba and the piano. This talented young man will continue his studies at Harvard University.

Brighton High School
Lea Barros of the South End

Originally from Cape Verde, Lea lives in the South End with her grandmother while her mother resides in Cape Verde working long hours to provide for the family. Lea is a member of the National Honor Society, Debate Team, Robotics Team, and Math Club, and has fulfilled many hours of community service. As a recipient of the Posse Scholarship, Lea will attend Hamilton College where she plans to major in biology and pursue a career in medical research.

Jeremiah E. Burke High School
Mahamud Yusuf of Roxbury

Mahamud was born is Somalia and immigrated to the United States with his family when he was just 7 months old. Mahamud found learning English as a second language extremely difficult, but through hard work, he learned to read, speak, and write English by the second grade. Mahamud plans to major in business management when he attends Bentley University this fall. His long-term goal is to start his own business.

Charlestown High School
Sydney Bussiere of Dorchester

Born and raised in New York, Sydney has earned high honors during her three years at Charlestown High. She is a recipient of the Dartmouth Book Award and has completed courses at Wheelock College through the Noonan Scholars program. Sydney’s teachers describe her as a powerhouse ready to change the world with her passion for social justice. Sydney has earned a full academic scholarship to Bowdoin College in Maine.

Community Academy
Vince Vila of Brighton

Vince is an amazing young man who manages to do well in school, hold down a part-time job, and volunteer with a youth soccer team in his community on the weekends. Vince will be the first in his family to attend college when he continues his studies next fall at Bunker Hill Community College.

Community Academy of Science and Health
Aleida Aldana of East Boston

The child of El Salvadoran immigrants, Aleida has spent her entire academic career in the Boston Public Schools. In addition to her dedication to her studies, she is a committed member of the Build On service learning program, and the One Goal Program. Aleida is a proud recipient of the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship. She will attend UMass Amherst.

Dearborn STEM Academy
Mario Lopes of Dorchester

Mario moved to Boston from Cape Verde in middle school. His teachers describe Mario Lopes as a humble, family oriented young man who is always smiling and helping his classmates. His passions are math, computer science, and soccer. He will attend UMass Dartmouth this fall.

Dorchester Academy
Brandon Siah of Boston

Brandon has been a shining star at Dorchester Academy. His teachers describe him as a role model who consistently puts forth true spirit of caring and motivation to help others. They also say his smile can light up a room. Brandon is already a student at Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology, where he is the first person in his family to attend college.

East Boston High School
Ooviya Sathiyamoorthy of East Boston

With a weighted GPA of 5.73, Ooviya still finds time for extracurricular activities. She is president of the National Honor Society, an actress and artist with the Theater Society, a mathlete, and editor for the Art Room Poetry Journal. Ooviya will spend the summer working as a programmer for eResearch Technology in Charlestown before heading to Brown University.

The English High School
Naby Diallo of Jamaica Plain

Naby embodies The English High School’s motto of Honor, Achievement and Service to Mankind. In a society that too often treats these virtues as unrealistic or somewhat dated, Naby continuously reaffirms that the high standards we place on our students are not only attainable, but should serve as a mere starting point. Naby has made a manful decision to lift up his fellow classmates as part of his journey. Next year, Naby will attend Northeastern University on a full scholarship.

Excel High School
Vy Tran of Dorchester

Driven and unassuming, with a thirst for knowledge, Vy is a self-motivated, confident, and competent young lady. Last year, she led her JROTC Academic JV Squad to a first-place finish in her Boston citywide scholastic competition. Vy has also earned a full scholarship to Northeastern University, where she plans to study science or medicine.

Fenway High School
Robert Arias Nivar of East Boston

Robert is known as “the Professor” at Fenway High School, where he is a role model and leader. He is a former special education student who has an impeccable work ethic. Robert seeks challenges wherever he can find them – through the Debate League, through summer classes at Harvard, and through his many internships. Robert will continue challenging himself at the College of the Holy Cross.

Greater Egleston Community High School
Kaysia Robert of Dorchester

Raised by a single mother, Kaysia was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension when she was 8 years old. Kaysia was determined not to let her illness slow her down, and she successfully completed high school in just three years. Her ultimate plans are to either become a neonatal nurse practitioner or an elementary school teacher. Her next stop is Bunker Hill Community College.

Henderson K-12 Inclusion School
Kanbe Mao of Roxbury

Raised by his single father, Kanbe has lived his entire life beating expectations. At the Henderson, Kanbe gained a prominent reputation among faculty and students alike where he served as a co-captain of the Debate Team, played intramural sports, was a member of the Travel Writing Club, won a city wide art contest, and served as the president of Strong Men, Strong Leaders, a character building organization for young men of color. Kanbe is the Henderson School's first Posse Scholar, and will attend Centre College in the fall, where he plans to study nursing.

Horace Mann School for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
Erisette Marie Cruz of Brookline

Erisette has been a student at the Horace Mann School since the age of 6. In addition to being gifted academically, she is also a strong leader, excelling in everything she sets out to do. She has been a valued member of the basketball team, student government president, and is always the friendliest person in the room. Erisette will continue her educational journey at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., where she plans to pursue a degree in special education.

Edward M. Kennedy Academy for Health Careers
Carlia Dabel of Dorchester

Carlia is a bright young woman with a passion for science. She has been a part of Crimson Summer Academy for 4 years. While part of the Vertex Science Fair Mentorship Program, her team designed a pair of glasses that would accurately measure the dimensions of someone's face to give them a better fitting pair of glasses. Carlia has earned a full scholarship to Northeastern University, where she plans to study biomedical engineering.

Mary Lyon Pilot High School
Aya El-Hassan of Brighton

Born in Abu-Dhabi, Aya is one of seven children who moved to the US with her family five years ago. Aya has already earned college credits through a dual enrollment program, and has received a full scholarship to Wellesley College. She loves helping people and plans to become a doctor.

Madison Park Technical Vocational High School
Ardo Ali of Dorchester

Ardo has excelled as a radio and television broadcasting student at the city’s only technical vocational school. She enjoys visual media production, where she can harness the power of storytelling to bring about social and economic change. Ardo has earned 18 college credits through RoxMapp, a program that ensures that all students have the support, experience, and preparation needed to access a high-demand career and post-secondary pathway. Ardo will attend Bucknell University as a Posse Scholar, where she plans to pursue a degree in international relations and business.

McKinley Preparatory High School
Maryssa Liao of Dorchester

Maryssa is a scholar, an athlete, and an artist. She is an avid runner who has been involved in the Sole Train therapeutic running group. She has also worked with Skanska Construction on the joint mural project between Skanska and the McKinley. This triple threat is headed to Bunker Hill Community College.

McKinley South End Academy
Francesca Salamanca of Roslindale

Francesca, better known as “Frankie” at school, is one of a set of triplets. Who has worked hard to overcome personal struggles to graduate. Francesca has developed self-confidence and has learned to persevere when faced with new and challenging obstacles - skills she has learned in part from her idol, Maya Angelou. Frankie will attend Lasell College as a fashion design major.

Margarita Muñiz Academy
Amy Ortiz of the South End

Amy is a proud graduate of the Rafael Hernández K-8 School. At Muñiz Academy, she has been a member of Harvard Crimson Summer Academy, the Yearbook Committee, Student Government, the Peer Leaders program, and the volleyball team. Amy also teaches at the after school program at the Hurley K-8 School. She will be the first person in her family to attend college when she enters Wesleyan University this fall.

New Mission High School
Filomena Da Silva of Roxbury

Filomena moved to the US from Cape Verde at the age of 10. Her family battled language and financial issues, but her dogged determination, wit, and perseverance have allowed her to climb to the top of her class. Next year, she will continue her studies at Dartmouth College. She plans to later study law in order to become an immigration lawyer. She hopes to give a voice to the voiceless.

John D. O'Bryant School of Mathematics and Science
Uyen Chu of Dorchester

Uyen immigrated to the US with her family from Vietnam in 2008. At the O’Bryant, she serves as the president at her school recycling club while juggling a challenging an array of AP courses. She is also an active member of her Vietnamese community, where she volunteers and translates every weekend at her local food pantry. The first in her family to go to college, she will be attending Tufts University with a full scholarship.

Josiah Quincy Upper School
Judy Lam of South Boston

Judy has balanced her academics at the Quincy’s International Baccalaureate Program and with a boatload of extracurricular activities, including basketball, Art Club, Piano Club, and Robotics Club. Last summer, Judy represented Quincy Upper at the IB Student World Conference in London. In the fall, Judy will attend Northeastern University as a Valedictorian Scholar with a focus on STEM.

Muriel S. Snowden International School at Copley
Kathryn Oliver of Dorchester

Kathryn is an avid rower who has spent the last 4 years participating in Row Boston, a rowing program available to all BPS students. She also took advantage of Snowden’s International Baccalaureate Program, and is slated to receive her IB Diploma this summer. Lucky for us, Kathryn isn’t going far. She has earned a full scholarship to Northeastern University.

TechBoston Academy
Alisha Vernet of Mattapan

Born in Haiti, Alisha came to the US when she was 3 and attended the Chittick for Elementary School. She says she just always knew that working hard will allow her to get very far. At TechBoston, she is involved in student government and athletics and is a known leader throughout the building. Alisha has an amazingly positive attitude and a permanent smile on her face. Alisha will study at Northeastern University.

Urban Science Academy
Steeven Cajuste of Hyde Park

Steeven’s family moved to Boston after the earthquake in Haiti in 2011. He credits his mother’s determination to support his family with giving him the motivation to do well in school. He says he is grateful for the opportunities that he has been given and is mindful of the countless people in Haiti who do not have access to such opportunities. Steeven will continue his journey at Dartmouth College.

West Roxbury Academy
Pamela Shehu of Boston

Originally from Albania, Pamela has excelled in every area of school life. She continuously extends herself to be of assistance to other students, helping classmates with MCAS prep, and serving as an ESL and Math tutor. Pamela will continue her studies this fall, also at Northeastern University.