Apr 6, 2023 - News

Councilor Kenzie Bok to take charge of public housing in Boston

Illustration of Boston City Hall with lines radiating from it.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Back Bay City Councilor Kenzie Bok is set to take over the Boston Housing Authority as Mayor Michelle Wu's point person for managing housing for low-income residents.

Why it matters: The BHA manages affordable housing for over 62,000 Bostonians, almost 9% of the city's population, according to Wu's office.

Bok will be in charge of the BHA's 70 developments that make up nearly 13,000 housing units.

  • Much of the BHA's work is in administering federal funds and housing programs like Section 8 vouchers at the local level.

Background: When she was elected in 2019 to fill the seat formerly held by Josh Zakim, Bok, 33, was a planning and policy advisor for the BHA.

  • Bok's district covers Beacon Hill, the Back Bay, West End, Fenway and Mission Hill.

What they're saying: “Kenzie brings a deep commitment to our BHA communities along with an expansive vision of how public housing should anchor our neighborhoods and city," Wu said in a news release on Bok’s appointment.

What's next: The District 8 councilor will transition into the role in May as outgoing housing administrator Kate Bennett plans a late-summer departure.

  • The council now needs to schedule a special election to fill Bok's seat or decide to wait until this November's municipal election.

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