Thursday, 4:30 PM
New leader on tap for Boston youth and family agency
By Donovan Slack, Globe Staff
Mayor Thomas M. Menino is expected to announce the appointment today of a new director of the Boston Centers for Youth and Families, the city agency that oversees many youth violence prevention efforts, including the troubled street worker program.
Daphne Griffin, executive director of the Blue Hill Avenue center of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston, will take over the post next month, city officials said.
"I'm excited about being involved with all of the communities in Boston," Griffin, who has been with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Boston for 10 years, said today in an interview. "There's so much more to do, and I look forward to working with the mayor and his vision for youth and families."
The appointment follows the resignation of Robert Lewis Jr., who is leaving next month to take a job with The Boston Foundation. Lewis has overseen BCYF since 2004.
The spike in youth violence during his tenure prompted calls for expanded prevention efforts from the agency, including longer community center hours and an overhaul of the street worker program, which had lost much of its effectiveness since its creation in 1990.
But there were no easy solutions. The calls for more to be done came at a time the city faced a massive budget crunch.
"BCYF has been one of the highlights of my professional career," Lewis said. "The privilege of leading this organization, honestly, was one of my boyhood dreams."
Lewis said he is confident in the mayor's appointment of Griffin.
"Daphne Griffin is one of Boston's really great young leaders," he said. "I anticipate and expect that she will lead BCYF into the future, and she'll do an outstanding job."
Donovan Slack can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.