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MPDC’s Sparks! Annual Gala

November 17 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

$25 – $100

MPDC’s Sparks! Annual Fundraising Gala

Madison Park Development Corporation welcomes you to the annual celebration! Join us for a creative, Black-tie optional gala to celebrate and support MPDC’s work in the community with music, food, dancing, & community awards!

When: Thursday, November 17th, 2022, 6:30 pm — 8:30 pm
Where: Hibernian Hall Ballroom (located at 184 Dudley Street, Roxbury, MA 02119)


For more information about Sparks, please contact Griffin Thomas at gthomas@madison-park.org.

Cornell Coley
Kim Tavar
Alondra Bobadilla
The Fred Woodard Collective

Boston Children’s Hospital’s Office of Community Health

Over thirty years ago, Boston Children’s Hospital was one of the first academic medical centers in the country to expand the traditional missions of patient care, teaching, and research to embrace a fourth mission — community. Boston Children’s community mission is to improve the health and well-being of children and families in our local community. The Office of Community Health brings together hospital and community resources to address health disparities, improve health outcomes, and promote health equity. Our community efforts are focused on offering programs and partnering with others that offer support and services that benefit Boston’s children and families, specifically those most affected by the social determinants of health.

The Office of Community Health is led by Shari Nethersole, MD, Vice President for Community Health and Engagement. Dr. Nethersole is also a pediatrician at the Children’s Hospital Primary Care Center. The expertise informs Boston Children’s community mission of two leadership groups, the Board Committee for Community Health and the Community Advisory Board. Both Boards have diverse representation from health care, education, government, and business sectors as well as grassroots organizations and provide the Office of Community Health with feedback from the communities reached through our programs and partnerships.

Hugh Johnson
Village In Progress Block Captain and Haynes House resident

Hugh Johnson is a Village in Progress Block Captain and the recipient of the 2022 Edna V. Bynoe Neighborhood Champion Award. The oldest of eight children, Hugh was born at Boston Medical Center. His first home was on Auburn Street (now Dewitt Drive) in Roxbury. Hugh attended the William Bacon School and graduated from Boston English High School, still located in the Fenway. 

After graduating from high school, Hugh entered the U.S. Army and spent five years serving his country, including two tours of Vietnam. After returning to his beloved Boston, Hugh had a career rooted in public service, especially working with veterans and the incarcerated.  

Hugh enjoys helping keep the area around Madison Park Village safe, but he is not only active in Madison Park’s public safety efforts. He volunteers his time at the Smith House and Dewitt Center food distributions. He is also active in our civic engagement and health and wellness programs. He even got his grandson involved in our youth programs. 

Hugh is grateful to his mother, who inspired him to be involved in the community. Hugh says he “stands on the shoulders of others who saw something in me that I couldn’t see in myself.” Hugh and his wife Cheryl live at Haynes House. They enjoy spending time with their six amazing grandchildren.

Tito Jackson
CEO, Verdant Medical – Former Boston City Councilor and Mayoral Candidate
Yhinny Matos
MPDC Youth Workforce Development Manager

Yhinny Matos was born in the small southern town of Barahona in the Dominican Republic. A few years later, in 1979, she landed in Boston to receive medical care and never moved back. A daughter of immigrants, she didn’t see her father until about six years later when he moved to be with his family. Yhinny has two siblings, an older sister and a younger brother. She is also a mother to a 20-year-old aspiring pilot. Yhinny graduated from Bay State College, Emerson, and recently in 2021, obtained an MBA from Cambridge College.

Her main passion is in the performing arts, beginning her career as a folkloric dancer at six. Fast forward to age 13, when she joined BPS’s citywide dance company, All City Dance Company, where she was a principal dancer throughout high school. Upon graduating high school, she auditioned for Phunk Phenomenon, where she danced for three years. Transitioning to breakdancing, she became one of four “b-girls” performing nationwide with the notable Floorlords, where she danced for thirteen years. She then began her own dance company, United Roots. While running the dance company for seven years, she got performing arts/teaching contracts with Puma, Reebok, Staples, Gillette, and Converse. She was also on the radio as a co-host for Big City’s “ Way Back When” radio show.

Yhinny has always had a dedication to the arts and youth development. In her early 20s, she worked as an accountant for a travel firm for about two years, then transitioned to arts marketing at Artists for Humanity, where she was employed for over ten years. She then acquired several positions at the Salvation Army Kroc Center, where she left as Marketing and Program Manager after eight years. Now working as Youth Workforce Program Manager for MPDC, she oversees programming for youth ages 14-21 and the scholarship program.

Yhinny believes that arts combined with youth development are her true calling. Forever grateful to MPDC, Yhinny hopes to continue building and designing dynamic programming for Boston’s future.

Xiomara Alicea
Orchard Gardens Resident Service Coordinator

Xiomara Alicea is the Resident Service Coordinator at Orchard Gardens Estates, a mixed-income property in Roxbury, Ma. She implements an array of programming and case management within the property management setting, serving 331 households and 150 senior homes. 

Xiomara believes it is essential for individuals, families, and seniors to provide programming to assist their educational and personal advancement. Working closely with a resident board and community partners to provide much-needed resources.

Xiomara has supported families in her roles as a Family Services Manager for Jeremiah Program-Boston, Ma, Program Coordinator for Heading Home Inc. at a Family Shelter and individuals at an SRO setting for Women in Boston, MA, and Cambridge, MA, a Unit Director for The Boys and Girls Clubs of Harford County, MD, and over five years as the Teen Director of The Boys and Girls Clubs of Dorchester, MA.  

Xiomara is certified in BEST trauma settings, is knowledgeable in Boys and Girls Clubs of America’s programming for Non-Profits, and exhibits experience and abundance of knowledge working with individuals, seniors, and families from diverse circumstances.

Xiomara has an educational background in liberal arts and business.

We hope to see you there!

Become a Sponsor today!

On behalf of Madison Park Development Corporation, we are very excited to invite you to the year’s 2022 Sparks Gala, which will be held on November 17, 2022. Additionally, it is our great pleasure to announce that MPDC will welcome back our friends and supporters in person for this year’s gala! We have been humbled by the support MPDC has received throughout these challenging past two years, including impressive turnouts at our 2020 and 2021 virtual galas. So this year, we look forward to saying thank you and celebrating with you at Hibernian Hall.

During the past year, MPDC reflected on its history while embracing the promise of our future as we celebrated the organization’s 55th anniversary. We also continued to navigate the ever-evolving environment catalyzed by the pandemic, including more acute needs among our residents and community. Finally, we reaffirmed our commitment to addressing the systemic and structural racial injustices that have for too long perpetuated deeply entrenched disparities in our community.

As part of that commitment, MPDC was proud to formally launch its Madison Park Next Door first-time homebuyer initiative in February of this year. We have also provided critically needed on-the-ground support through the Dewitt Center and our Community Action department, including food access, meaningful employment and skill-building for our young people, health and active living initiatives, and violence prevention and trauma supports. MPDC has also been thrilled to welcome back the community for performances, events, and workshops at Hibernian Hall, Roxbury’s home for arts and culture. Finally, MPDC remains committed to providing high-quality, affordable rental housing and homeownership opportunities.

Despite the hardships that our community has faced, MPDC recognizes the once-in-a-generation opportunities ahead of us to make meaningful and lasting change, reimagine systems, and foster communities that can work for everyone. We also know that we cannot do this transformative work without the support of our donors. As MPDC increases efforts to facilitate household and neighborhood wealth creation in 2022, we invite you to become a Sparks sponsor and join us in this commitment.

We are also excited to be once again able to offer all of our sponsors Community Investment Tax Credits (CITC). Through the CITC program, donors who contribute to community development organizations like MPDC can receive a 50% state tax rebate on donations of $1,000 or more. For example, is your business considering sponsoring the Sparks gala at the $5,000 level? Consider instead becoming a $10,000 level sponsor and leveraging the CITC program, which will result in a $5,000 donation out-of-pocket after your Massachusetts state tax rebate.

In addition to CITC, becoming an event sponsor allows you to access a range of additional benefits, including acknowledgment for you and your business on MPDC’s website, during the gala itself, and in materials throughout the year, including our monthly newsletter and annual report.

Again, please save the date for the evening of November 17th, 2022. We can’t wait to welcome you back and say thank you in person!

Leslie Reid, MPDC CEO

Malik Aziz, MPDC Board President

View the 2022 Sponsorship Package here



November 17
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
$25 – $100
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