A motion to form the Winthrop Commission on Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Relations (CDICR) was passed by Council at its meeting on July 21. At the Council meeting on Aug. 4, Pres. Phil Boncore announced that the team had been assembled. Each of the nine commissioners represents diverse educational, professional and personal backgrounds. They will serve staggered terms of one to three years.
Andrea Baez (Chair) is a longtime Winthrop resident and mother of two. During her time as Branch Executive of the Dorchester YMCA, she worked closely with the Boston Police Department on their Race and Social Justice taskforce. She currently works in social justice and youth advocacy as the Senior Branch Executive for the Lynn YMCA. Baez will serve on the commission for a period of three years.
John Bentley is a 30-year resident of Winthrop and local ironworker foreman. He was a prior diversity teacher for Hannaford Bros., and has completed education on diversity in the workplace. Bentley will serve for a period of two years.
â€œI have seen diversity slowly increase. It has not always been embraced,â€ he stated on his application. â€œMy vision for Winthrop is a town of inclusion.â€
Father Walter Connelly Jr. (Secretary), of St. Johnâ€™s Episcopal Church has lived in Winthrop for 11 years and calls himself â€œan advocate for the inclusive rights of all.â€ He will serve a three-year term.
Suzanne Martucci-Gallo is a lifelong Winthrop resident and the owner of the Winthrop Book Depot & CafÃ©. A graduate of Winthrop High School and the New England Institute of Art, she currently lives with her wife in Boston. Martucci-Gallo will serve as commissioner for a two-year term.
John Morgan has lived in Winthrop for 46 years. He worked for the Massachusetts Commision for the Blind Vending Facilities Program until his retirement in 2014. He was appointed to the Commission due to his ongoing efforts as an advocate for the disabled and will serve for one year.
Nisarg Patel was born and raised in India and has lived in Winthrop since he was a teenager. He is the owner of Quickfood Mart and Thompsonâ€™s Town Liquors. Patel will serve on the committee for three years.
Lidia Llovera Ramos is a longtime Winthrop resident and mother of two. Her career in public service has centered around education and nutrition. She currently works at ABCD Head Start. Ramos will serve for two years.
Also serving on the committee are Sid Belghiti and Anthony Williams. Both will serve for a term of one year.
The Winthrop CDICR aims to encourage respect among residents, visitors and employees of the town by advocating for human and civil rights for all. It was founded on the belief that inclusion will make the town a better place for everyone.
This article has been updated.