Wu Appoints New Members to the ZBA

Special to the Patriot-Bridge

Mayor Michelle Wu announced a slate of appointments to the Zoning Board of Appeal (ZBA). The appointees live across the City and represent the diversity of Boston, including members who are multilingual, renters in income-restricted housing, homeowners, building trades members, first generation immigrants, and multigenerational Bostonians. Their collective training and experience includes city and transportation planning, community development, affordable housing creation, sustainable development and architectural design, and construction. 

As the City’s zoning code has failed to keep up with Boston’s growth, the majority of development proposals in Boston require zoning relief and must be reviewed and approved by the ZBA. These new ZBA members will work closely with Chief of Planning Arthur Jemison to help advance the Mayor’s goal of rebuilding trust with communities through planning-led development while advancing equity, affordability, and resilience across all functions of the City’s development review process.

“This outstanding slate of community members will play a key role in Boston’s growth as we work to build more housing and address the regional affordability crisis, support equitable and resilient neighborhoods, and shift to planning-led development,” said Mayor Michelle Wu. “These appointees represent the diversity, talent, and expertise of our communities that will connect Boston’s growth to addressing our greatest challenges.”

“I want to thank the prior members for their service to the city. These ZBA appointees have a variety of experiences in development and community advocacy work in Boston’s neighborhoods, and they represent the diversity of our City,” said Chief of Planning Arthur Jemison. “The BPDA is focused on furthering planning and development work that addresses Boston’s greatest challenges: resiliency, affordability, and equity. I am looking forward to a collaborative working relationship with the ZBA. Together, we can aim to reduce reliance on variances as the BPDA prioritizes planning-lead development.”

The ZBA totals 14 members – seven primary members and seven alternates with a range of experience as required by state law  – who serve three-year terms. Alternates serve if primary members are unable to attend a ZBA hearing. All members currently serving on the ZBA were appointed by previous administrations. In addition to 10 new members, Mayor Wu is reappointing Jeanne Pinado, Sherry Dong, and Hansy Better Barraza. Kerry Walsh Logue, a representative of the Building Trades Employers Association from South Boston, is an active member whose term expires in November. The nominees will now need to be confirmed by the Boston City Council. 

Zoning Board of Appeal Appointees


Giovanni Valencia, West Roxbury (primary seat)

Alaa Mukahaal, Mission Hill (alternate seat)

Neighborhood Organization Seats

Norm Stembridge, Roxbury (primary seat)

Shavel’le Olivier, Mattapan (alternate seat)

Sherry Dong, Dorchester (primary seat)

David Aiken, East Boston (alternate seat)

Greater Boston Real Estate Board 

Jeanne Pinado, Jamaica Plain (primary seat)

Katie Whewell, West End (alternate seat)

Boston Society of Architecture

Hansy Better Barraza, Roslindale (primary seat)

Thea Massouh, Brighton (alternate seat)

Building Trades Employers Association

Raheem Shepard, Hyde Park (primary seat)

Building Trades Council

Alan Langham, Dorchester (primary seat)

Dave Collins, Roslindale (alternate seat)

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