Ashley Barnes-Cocke
Graduate School:
Harvard Graduate School of Education
Undergraduate School: Hamline University
Interest Area: LGBTQ+ and Homelessness issues
Mentors: Megan Costello, Rappaport/Boston Urban Scholar and Techrosette Leng, City Planner, City of Revere and Rappaport Advisory Board Member
Placement: Department of Neighborhood Development, City of Boston
Supervisor: Courtney Trudell, Assistant Director of Supportive Housing
Project Description:Ashley Barnes-Cocke’s project focused on increasing identification and support for students experiencing housing instability and not in the care of a legal guardian. Working at the City of Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development (DND) and partnering closely with Boston Public Schools (BPS), they conducted interviews of BPS and DND staff, community partners, and young people who experienced homelessness and attended Boston Public Schools. They used this information to visually map BPS’ resource referral process and to create a resource referral tool for BPS staff to identify students in need and more effectively connect students to services that address those needs. Ashley compiled their findings in reports to both BPS and DND, focusing on opportunities for policy changes and collaboration in the following areas; increasing identification of students with housing instability; ensuring appropriate resource referrals are made; coordinating entry access; and suggesting future opportunities for youth-focused housing resources. In addition, Ashley supported several non-profit agencies to refine grant applications and clarify proposed program models for youth-specific housing programs funded by DND.

Samantha BatelSamantha Batel
Graduate School: Harvard Kennedy School/Harvard Graduate School of Education
Undergraduate School: Princeton University
Interest Area: Education Issues
Mentors: Phil Puccia, Senior Vice President for Education and Not-for Profit Banking at JP Morgan and Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Member and Diana Serrano, Research Associate, Education Development Center and Former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Boston Public Schools
Supervisors: Will Eger, Strategic Project Manager, Boston Public Schools and Kristen Daley, Director of Special Programs and Initiatives, Boston Public Schools
Project Description: Samantha Batel worked with Boston Public Schools’ (BPS) Chief Academic Officer to develop a multi-tiered system of support framework (MTSS) for the district. This project required collaboration across several BPS departments and culminated in a presentation for schools receiving district support to make transformative improvement. Supported by district experts, this work will be foundational for BPS’ future MTSS work.

Timothy BishopTimothy Bishop
Graduate School: Harvard Kennedy School/Sloan School of Management
Undergraduate School: Williams College
Interest Area: Veterans’ Issues and Performance Management
Mentors: Amy Dain, Dain Research and Former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow and Dan Futrell, Chief Executive Officer, The Pat Tillman Foundation
Placement: The Strategic Innovation Group,  Office of Governor Charlie Baker
Supervisor: Jean-Louis Rochet, Director of Strategic Innovation and former Rappaport Law and Public Policy Fellow
Project Description: The Strategic Innovation Group (SIG) is a cross-functional team within the Governor’s Office that helps execute the Governor’s priority reforms, program innovations, and operational improvements. The Rappaport Fellow would work with a range of stakeholders, including secretariat and agency leadership, to advance a policy initiative or operational improvement through a combination of strategic advising, management consulting, data analysis, policy research, and project management. The Fellow would facilitate stakeholder communication across organizational boundaries and levels of oversight to monitor outcomes and ensure steady progress.

Kimberly BlairKimberly Blair
Graduate School: Boston University School of Public Health
Undergraduate School: Georgetown University
Interest Area: Women’s health issues
Mentors: Renee Landers, Professor of Law, Suffolk University Law School and Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Member
Placement: Office of Rep Jay Livingstone
Supervisor: Caitlin Duffy, Legislative Aide, Office of Rep. Jay Livingstone
Project Description: Kimberly will be conducting research for the Menstrual Health Equity and the ROE Act bills. She will also help with research on other health policy topics as needed.

Robert BohlerRobert Bohler
Graduate School: Brandeis University
Undergraduate School: University of Georgia
Interest Area: Opioid Addiction and Recovery Issues
Mentors: Jim Segel, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Chair and Abigail Kim, Legislative Aide, Office of Senator John Keenan and Former Rappaport Public Policy Summer Fellow
Placement: Office of Representative Jon Santiago
Supervisor: Cory Amzon, Legislative Aide, Office of Rep. Jon Santiago
Project Description: Robert spent the summer with Representative Jon Santiago’s office at the Massachusetts State House working on developing tools that will inform future opioid legislation. Rep. Santiago represents the 9th Suffolk District, which contains the Mass and Cass area, a population that has been disproportionately affected by the opioid crisis. Robert’s first task was to meet with a variety of stakeholders in this area, ranging from medical providers, directors of governmental service providers, and drug users, and identify barriers to engagement and make policy recommendations that would improve the lives of those struggling with chronic homelessness and addiction as well as alleviate neighborhood burden. Next, Robert created a database of scientific papers and resources on selected interventions to the opioid crisis, making evidence-based policy recommendations based on the literature. Some of the topics included medication-assisted treatment (MAT) in jails and prison, MAT in emergency departments, civil commitments, and safe consumption sites. This database will be a tool that can be made available to all state legislators. In addition to these two research projects, Robert also attended legislative sessions, hearings, neighborhood meetings, and constituent meetings on behalf of the Representative.

Karyn BruggemanKaryn Bruggeman
Graduate School: Harvard Kennedy School
Undergraduate School: College of William and Mary
Interest Area: Workforce Development
Mentors: Brian Doherty, Building and Trades Council of the Metropolitan District and Rappaport Advisory Board Member and Reilly Kiernan, Case Team Leader at The Bridgespan Group and former Rappaport Public Policy Summer Fellow
Placement: Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development, City of Boston
Supervisor: Katy Gall, Deputy Director of Workforce Development
Project Description: Karyn will be working on the City of Boston’s Tuition Free Community College program.

Amy CoutureAmy Couture
Graduate School: Harvard Kennedy School
Undergraduate School: Dartmouth College
Interest Area: Economic Development and Criminal Justice Issues
Mentors: Melissa Threadgill, Director of Juvenile Justice Initiatives, Massachusetts Office of the Child Advocate and Former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Office of Senator James Eldridge
Supervisor: Michael Carr, Chief of Staff, Office of Senator James Eldridge
Project Description: Amy will be supporting Senator Jamie Eldridge and his team on activity in the Judiciary Committee, particularly relating to criminal justice reform legislation.

Yareliz DiazYareliz Diaz
Graduate School: Boston University School of Public Health
Undergraduate School: Tufts University
Interest Areas: Emergency preparedness and public health equity
Mentors: Vivien Li, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and Tariana Little, Harvard School of Public Health and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Boston Public Health Commission’s Office of Public Health Preparedness
Supervisor: Courtney Grey, Director of Disaster Behavioral Health
Project Description: Yareliz Diaz spent her summer at the Boston Public Health Commission’s Office of Public Health Preparedness (OPHP). There she had the opportunity to attend the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency’s annual conference and learn from industry leaders across the country. She also got certified as a national weather spotter! Her work over the summer surrounded conducting research on the increasing suicide rates for young Black men across the country and culminated in a literature review and report with findings and preliminary recommendations for future preventative interventions. OPHP also received a Barr grant that focuses on climate resilience in the city and will create Community Resilience Networks (CRN) in different neighborhoods across Boston. Yareliz developed the initial survey for the members of the CRN in order to gather baseline data and understanding of what are immediate community needs and what they are already doing in their own neighborhoods to support each other during times of climate related emergencies.

Jessica HamiltonJessica Hamilton
Graduate School: Boston University School of Theology
Undergraduate School: Northeastern University
Interest Area: Racial Equity
Mentors: Leila Quinn, Brandeis University and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission
Supervisor: Julie Johnson, Director of Research
Project Description: Jessica will work with the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission's Research Department supporting efforts to meet research requirements of Chapter 55: An Act to Ensure Safe Access to Marijuana. In particular, she will aid in understanding the social and economic trends of marijuana use in the Commonwealth. She will also work on research related to the Commission's social equity agenda for the cannabis industry.

Carl HedmanCarl Hedman
Graduate School: MIT
Undergraduate School: Reed College
Interest Area: Housing
Mentors: Tim Warren, The Warren Group and Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Member and Monique Gibbs, Policy Innovation Associate, MassHousing and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Department of Neighborhood Development, City of Boston
Supervisor: Jessica Boatright, Deputy Director for Neighborhood Housing Development
Project Description: Carl Hedman worked for the Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development in the Neighborhood Housing Division, the team that oversees the City's investment in affordable housing development and preservation. Rising costs to build affordable housing are making it increasingly challenging to meet the needs of a City in the midst of a housing affordability crisis. With this in mind, Carl's first task was to research cost containment guidelines for affordable housing development in Boston. Drawing on this work, he developed a series of recommendations for the City's fiscal year 2020 funding awards aimed at maximizing the number of affordable units funded and incentivizing deeper affordability. Carl also supported work to revise and expand the Acquisition Opportunity Program, the City's primary tool for meeting it's 2030 goal of preserving 1,000 naturally affordable units from private market speculation and deed restricting them. In that work, he developed a set of recommendations with the goal of making the program more responsive to market conditions and encouraging greater program participation.

Dewin HernandezDewin Hernandez
Graduate School: Boston College School of Social Work/ Boston College Carroll School of Business
Undergraduate School: Berklee College of Music
Interest Area: LGBTQ+ policy and mental health
Mentors: Ben Forman, Policy Director, MassINC and Rappaport Advisory Board Member and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow and Mariel Novas, Harvard Graduate School of Education and fomer Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Massachusetts Department of Mental Health
Supervisors: Crystal Collier, Chief of Staff and Joy O’Connell, Diversity Officer
Project Description: Dewin will be at the Department of Mental Health Central Office site working with Crystal D. Collier (Chief of Staff) and Joy Connell Diversity Officer as part of their Race, Equity and Inclusion Steering Committee and LGBT Policy workgroup.

Crystal Lopez HaynesCrystal Lopez Haynes
Graduate School: Boston College School of Social Work
Interest Area: Social services issues
Mentors: Tom Keane, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and Kara Jeter, Boston University School of Public Health and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Massachusetts Interagency Council on Housing and Homelessness
Supervisor: Alice Colegrove, Consultant for the Executive Office of Health and Human Services
Project Description: In tandem with the Office of the Child Advocate and UMass work regarding Transition planning, Crystal will research the prevalence and programming for under 18 youth in the 10 EOHHS regions. She will complete the following: 1) Brief Literature review on best practices for serving under 18 youth experiencing unaccompanied homelessness
2) Review Community Needs Assessment data on under 18 youth in the 10 regions
3) Develop an interview protocol
4) Conduct 10-15 interviews with providers + key stakeholders 
5) Conduct 5-10 interviews with young adults (over 18) who experienced homelessness before age 18
6) Synthesize the above into a PPT with preliminary recommendations

Andrew McFarlandAndrew McFarland
Graduate School: Tufts University
Undergraduate School: Boston University
Interest Area: Transportation issues
Mentors: Monica Tibbits-Nutt, Executive Director, 128 Business Council and Rappaport Advisory Board Member and Kelly Blynn, Senior Analyst, Meister Consultant Group
Placement: Office of Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu
Supervisor: Kerry Richards, Policy Director
Project Description: Andrew McFarland worked in the Office of Boston City Councilor At-large Michelle Wu, where he researched opportunities for improving public transit and growing ridership in Metro Boston by advancing policy shifts in fare collection, bus priority implementation, and governance.

Danielle MulliganDanielle Mulligan
Graduate School: Tufts University
Undergraduate School: Tufts University
Interest Area: Housing issues
Mentors: Ramon Soto, Director of Policy, Massachusetts at uAspire and Rappaport Advisory Board Member and Margaret Keaveny, Senior Program Office for Lending, LISC and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Boston Planning and Development Agency
Supervisors: Raul Duverge, Project Manager and Jonathan Greeley, Director of Development Review
Project Description: Danielle primarily worked on assessing a wide range of potential impacts of the One Charlestown Project, the transition of the Boston Housing Authority's Bunker Hill housing into mixed income housing, on Boston Public Schools and BHA residents with school-aged children. Her research included interviewing local stakeholders, BPS and BHA administrators, and administrators in public housing and education in other cities across the US. Danielle presented her findings and recommendations for the next steps of the One Charlestown project, as well as future similar public housing redevelopment projects, to the Development review team at the BPDA, as well as administrators at BPS.

Rishya NarayananRishya Narayanan
Graduate School: Northeastern University
Undergraduate School: Clark University
Interest Area: Environmental Issues
Mentors: Vivien Li, Rappaport Advisory Board Member and Dan Kennedy, Northeastern University School of Journalism and Rappaport Advisory Board Member and Kara Runsten, Sustainability Specialist, Kim Lundgren Associates and Former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries
Supervisor: Story Reed, Permitting and Statistics Program Manager
Project Description: Rishya worked on the Division’s Port Profile initiative, which summarizes data collected in each port regarding its status and infrastructure. Port Profiles provide an overview of the commercial fishing activity and infrastructure within Massachusetts’ ports, and are part of a larger port report. These profiles fill a data gap within the Division and Massachusetts at large: there exists no concise summary of each port’s value and infrastructure status for local fishing communities and important industry stakeholders. The Port Profiles will be used as a tool to support local fishing communities and preserve the working waterfront, providing these communities with a tool for self-advocacy and lobbying within the industry. Rishya also worked on restructuring the Division’s Revolving Loan Fund, a program aimed at economically supporting small, local groundfishermen operating in sectors. Her research culminated in a proposal to repurpose that will be submitted to the program’s federal partner, NOAA Fisheries, for discussion of and action on its future. The proposal aims to find new, more effective ways to better economically support these groundfishermen. Finally, Rishya worked on a variety of side projects, including (but not limited to) photography campaigns, digital media management and analytics, audience engagement, and field research.

Mariangely Solis CerveraMariangely Solis Cervera
Graduate School: Harvard Graduate School of Education
Undergraduate School: Mount St. Mary’s College
Interest Area: Immigrant Issues
Mentors: Jeffrey Sanchez, Rappaport Advisory Board Member and Collyn Chan, MIT and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Mayor’s Office for Immigrant Advancement, City of Boston
Supervisor: Agnes Chang, Interim Director
Project Description: This summer at Mayor Walsh’s Office for Immigrant Advancement (MOIA), Mariangely had the opportunity to collaborate with Boston Public School staff, teachers and parents. The community outreach coordinator at MOIA and Mariangely conducted focus groups around the district to better understand the challenges and opportunities facing our immigrant students and families in BPS schools. Their findings led to the creation of a) a brief resource guide organized by need and neighborhood for school staff, b) a MOIA led workshop focused on policies and laws impacting immigrant youth and c) a report for the new BPS superintendent, Dr. Cassellius. Their efforts this summer led to established partnerships between MOIA and schools in East Boston, Brighton and Roxbury. This ongoing collaboration can result in holistic impact for immigrant youth and families in our city.

Emy TakinamiEmy Takinami
Graduate School: Boston University School of Education/Boston University School of Social Work
Undergraduate School: University of Vermont
Interest Area: Education issues
Mentors: Kevin Sullivan, Vice President, Strategic Corporate Relations and Engagement and Rappaport Advisory Board Member and Jill Benevides, Tufts University and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Boston Public Schools, Office of Opportunity Gaps
Supervisor: Harold Miller, Director of Opportunity Gaps and District Transformation
Project Description: Emy Takinami spent her summer at the Boston Public Schools’ Office of Opportunity Gaps, supporting their policy and implementation plan, which works to implement cultural proficiency across the district, dismantle structural barriers and provide greater access to opportunities in order to close the opportunity gap for students from historically marginalized backgrounds. Emy drafted a memo for the new superintendent, which summarized the role of the Office and outlined the next steps in the Implementation Plan, including the next steps for the new Superintendent in supporting the work of eradicating opportunity gaps at BPS. The memo included data at the student, school and system/district levels that highlighted the pressing need for full district support. Other projects Emy supported include: Developing a one-pager for the new superintendent on eliminating disproportionate discipline of students of color; Compiling and producing a list of recommendations from the OAG Task Force; and producing a one-pager for the Office of Opportunity Gaps, catered toward students and families as part of the Office’s wider goal of enhancing their marketing and communications plan.

Ronesha WilliamsRonesha Williams
Graduate School: Brandeis University
Undergraduate School: Gordon College
Interest Area: Education issues
Mentors: Lissy Medvedow, Executive Director, Rappaport Center for Law and Public Policy at Boston College Law School and Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Member and Maksim Wynn, Harvard Kennedy School and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Mayor’s Office for New Urban Mechanics
Supervisors: Jaclyn Youngblood, Chief of Staff and Sabrina Dorsainvil, Director of Civic Design
Project Description: At the City of Boston’s Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics, in partnership with the Department of Youth Engagement and Employment(DYEE), Ronesha worked to rethink and propose a new model for the Youth Lead the Change initiative. Youth Lead the Change is the City of Boston’s youth-led participatory budgeting initiative that allows youth ages 12-22 to decide how to spend $1 Million of the City’s capital budget. After holding feedback sessions with youth participants and multiple city departments throughout the summer, Ronesha worked with DYEE to draft a proposal that would address the current challenges in the process and propose changes that would allow the program to run more efficiently and create a larger impact.

Nicholas WoolfNicholas Woolf
Graduate School: Tufts University
Undergraduate School: Tufts University
Interest Area: Education Policy
Mentors: Tom Keane, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and Antoniya Marinova, Senior Program Officer, The Boston Foundation and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
Supervisor: Kristen McKinnon Service-Learning Specialist & Student Engagement Coordinator at the Center for Educational Options
Project Description: As a Rappaport Fellow at the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), Nick Woolf helped to support a cross-functional team that was tasked with revision the state’s Comprehensive Health Framework. This set of standards, which has not been updated since 1999, outlines what students at each grade-level are expected to know with regards to physical, emotional, and mental health. In his role, he acted as an internal content expert on social-emotional learning, evaluating standards related to mental health and – ultimately – collaborated with the Center for Instructional Support to create a reference guide to help educators in other content areas (e.g., mathematics, English, history) understand overlaps between the social and emotional competencies within the revised Health Framework and key practices within their respective subject of expertise. This “cross-walk” document will be used as part of DESE’s implementation strategy and distributed to public schools across the state in order to aid educators in integrating SEL into daily instruction. In addition, he was involved in a number of ancillary projects related to DESE’s social-emotional learning initiatives, including: • Redesigning the agency’s webpage on social and emotional learning in Massachusetts • Presenting updates on the Comprehensive Health Framework revisions to Jeff Riley, the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education • Coordinating meetings with a panel of public-school health educators to solicit feedback on the new health standards • Integrating resources from major organizations (CASEL and The Aspen Institute) onto DESE’s website to increase accessibility for educators and school leaders • Proposing a plan to create an online course for Massachusetts educators and school leaders on social and emotional learning

Alexis YohrosAlexis Yohros
Graduate School: Northeastern University
Undergraduate School: Florida State University
Mentors: Dan Kennedy, Northeastern University School of Journalism and Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Member and Joanna Abaroa-Ellison, Policy Analyst at the Crime and Justice Initiative at Community Resources for Justice and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow
Placement: Massachusetts Office of the Child Advocate
Supervisor: Melissa Threadgill, Director of Juvenile Justice Initiatives
Project Description: This summer Alexis worked at the Office of the Child Advocate under the supervision of Melissa Threadgill, the Director of Juvenile Justice Initiatives. One of her main projects involved working on a juvenile justice data website. This aims to be a public facing website where policymakers, members of the public, and other stakeholders can go to learn detailed information about the juvenile justice system in Massachusetts. In addition, she analyzed a community-based intervention survey, which examined referral gaps in evidence-based services for youth. As Massachusetts does not have standardized youth diversion practices in place, she also researched and presented on different diversion models from other states in the hopes of generating discussion on how these practices can apply to MA. Finally, Alexis created a policy memo and presentation on how these evidence-based practices and diversion models can be funded at the state level. This was presented by Melissa at the latest Community-Based Interventions Subcommittee meeting.