Black History Boston: Ayanna Pressley

Ayanna Soyini Pressley is a true trailblazer and role model for the Black community. Ayanna came to Boston in 1992 while pursuing a Bachelor’s degree at Boston University in the College of General Studies. After two years in school, Ayanna left to help support her family, but still took classes at the Metropolitan College. Upon leaving Boston University, Ayanna began working for United States Representative Joseph P. Kennedy II. Her work included helping constituents with social security claims and working with veterans, people with disabilities, and older adults. Ayanna then worked as his constituency director and then worked as the senior aide for United States Senator John Kerry.

Photo: The Root

In 2009, Ayanna Pressley won an At-Large seat of the Boston City Council, becoming the first woman of color to serve in the history of the Boston City Council. In her first year as a City Councilor, Ayanna formed the Committee on Healthy Women, Families, and Communities, which addresses issues such as domestic violence, child abuse, and human trafficking. Ayanna occupied her seat for nine years until she won the seat for the 7th district of Massachusetts of the US House of Representatives, becoming the first Black woman to be elected from Massachusetts to the United States Congress. Ayanna Pressley’s example and high standard of achievement has inspired more Black people to pursue political careers.

For the work that she has done and will do in the future, we are proud to honor her today on her birthday! Happy Birthday and thank you for your contributions to the people of Boston! 

Learn more about the Honorable Ayanna Pressley’s journey and work:

Contact Department: Diversity

Publish Date: Mon, 02/03/2020 – 9:35am


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