Diverse Changes Around New England’s Second-Largest City

By John O. Harney

Comings and Goings …

Stephanie Williams

Worcester City Manager Edward M. Augustus Jr. announced he will step down in May after eight years leading New England’s second largest city. Augustus is credited with the city’s recent economic growth, including the development of Polar Park, home of the Worcester Red Sox, the minor league baseball team formerly based in Pawtucket, R.I. He has been criticized for the city’s slow progress on racial equity, marked by the short tenures of three chief diversity officers in the six years since the post was created. … The most recent to hold that job, Stephanie Williams, was just appointed to the newly created role of chief diversity executive at Mount Wachusett Community College, which has campuses in Gardner, Leominster, Fitchburg and Devens.

The Charles F. Kettering Foundation chose former Ohio State University scholar and Spelman College Provost Sharon L. Davies as its president and CEO, the first leadership change since 1981 at the nonprofit foundation that focuses on citizen-centered democracy. She will succeed David Mathews, who will become president emeritus in April.

The Biden administration named Dr. Ashish K. Jha, the dean of the Brown University School of Public Health and familiar face in efforts to fight the Covid pandemic, as the White House coronavirus coordinator, replacing entrepreneur Jeffrey D. Zients who plans to return to private life in April. Jha is a native of India and medical doctor who led an institute at Harvard University’s School of Public Health before joining Brown in fall 2020.


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