We were BACK IN BLACK!
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 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.
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.