Boston Center for Community and Justice names first BCCJ Heller Leadership Scholar

June 25, 2009

The Heller School for Social Policy and Management has joined the Boston Center for Community and Justice (BCCJ) in developing the leadership of BCCJ staff and alumni by providing one full-tuition scholarship to the Heller MBA program in Nonprofit Management. BCCJ provides youth and leadership programs to individuals and organizations throughout greater Boston.

The first BCCJ Heller Leadership Scholar is Johnny Charles, Community Outreach Associate for The Food Project. He received the award at BCCJ's Opening Boston Awards event on June 24, 2009, and will begin the Heller MBA program in fall 2009.

In his role at The Food Project, Charles works with urban and suburban youth to build a sustainable food system. He assists with neighborhood development projects, coordinates outreach programs and volunteers, manages farmer's markets, and locates urban properties with "green space" potential.

Charles is well known for his continuous civic involvement and is currently the president of the Mt. Pleasant, Forest, and Vine Street Neighborhood Association in Roxbury, MA. He is equally active with the Vine Street Community Center where he has run a basketball league and serves as a mentor.

A first generation Haitian-American, Charles graduated from Brighton High School where he was a finalist in city-wide entrepreneurship competitions. While in high school, he graduated from The City School's Summer Leadership Program and received the program's "Big Picture Award" as an alumnus. He holds a bachelors degree in Communications with a focus on Business Management from Curry College.

Johnny Charles with Deval Patrick and Brenda Anderson

L-R: Johnny Charles, the first BCCJ Heller Leadership Scholar, with Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Brenda Anderson, Associate Director of the Heller MBA program, at BCCJ's Opening Boston Awards event.

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