Mayor Wu Announces New Jamaica Plain and East Boston Neighborhood Liaisons
Today, Mayor Michelle Wu announced Melissa Beltran as the new Jamaica Plain liaison and Manuela Villa Gomez as the new East Boston liaison in the Office of Neighborhood Services. Melissa and Manuela will serve as the primary contacts for constituents and businesses in the neighborhoods seeking to connect with the Mayor's Office, and will facilitate the delivery of services in collaboration with City departments.
“Melissa and Manuela were raised in the neighborhoods they will now be serving, and bring this personal connection to their work,” said Mayor Michelle Wu. “Melissa has proven experience advocating for vulnerable populations in our city, and Manuela brings a passion for environmental justice and preserving the natural beauty of our communities. I look forward to working with both of them to better address the daily concerns of our residents.”
The Office of Neighborhood Services liaisons play an integral role in connecting residents to City services and resources by facilitating citizen input in all aspects of local government through service requests, attending neighborhood meetings, and emergency responses.
“Melissa and Manuela are already passionate about their roles as liaisons because of their strong ties to their neighborhoods,” said Brianna Millor, Chief of Community Engagement. “I am confident they will serve East Boston and Jamaica Plain with compassion, equity, and enthusiasm to provide the best constituent services City Hall has to offer.”
As a first-generation college student, Melissa received a degree in Sociology with a minor in Communications from Worcester State University. In 2022, she was selected to join the SPARK Boston cohort to help encourage young adults to participate in local government initiatives. Melissa previously worked for the Boston Public Health Commission where she served in two departments: Homeless Services and the Youth Development Network.
“As a lifelong resident of Jamaica Plain, I've seen firsthand the difference that having equitable access to essential city services can make in our community and I'm extremely thankful for the opportunity to continue to bridge the gap for not only underrepresented populations, but all of Jamaica Plain,” said Melissa Beltran, Mayor's Office of Neighborhood Services Jamaica Plain Liaison. “I take pride in serving as an inspiration for women and girls, and I'm excited to build on the foundation laid by Mayor Wu as the first elected woman leader of our city to encourage future generations to dream big and work hard to become the change they wish to see in their neighborhood.”
Mela (Manuela) Villa Gomez’s parents moved to East Boston when they arrived from Colombia in 2000. She attended Excel Academy Charter School and participated in a sailing camp at Piers Park Sailing Center. These two places were integral in developing her love for community programming and enjoying the natural resources available in the city. She attended Boston College where she graduated with a degree in Environmental Studies and a concentration in Climate Change and Societal Adaptation.
“In this role, I want to continue connecting the people I serve with resources that are helpful to them, and thus contribute to the vibrancy of our neighborhood,” said Manuela Villa Gomez, Mayor's Office of Neighborhood Services East Boston Liaison. “East Boston is my favorite neighborhood in Boston because the people are so genuine and embrace diversity as a major melting pot of people. I’m committed to doing everything I can to maintain that legacy!”
ABOUT THE MAYOR’S OFFICE OF NEIGHBORHOOD SERVICES
The Mayor's Office of Neighborhood Services (ONS) encourages, facilitates, and maximizes citizen input and participation through service requests, neighborhood meetings, mailings, and emergency responses. To report non-emergency issues to the City, residents are encouraged to connect with BOS:311 by dialing 3-1-1 or by downloading the free BOS:311 app on iOS or Android platforms.