As Chief Diversity Officer, Danielson “Donny” Tavares works to implement the City’s diversity goals and objectives, including hiring, leadership, and career development. He partners with community, academic, and business organizations to exchange best practices as well as develop processes that ensure opportunities and advancement for candidates from underrepresented demographics.
Under his leadership, the City published its first-ever workforce report to look at salary, gender, and racial breakdowns of City municipal employees and to ensure that the City continues to reflect the diverse population it serves. Donny also oversees the Diversity Dashboard, a public interface tool which provides insight into our existing workforce and helps benchmark our progress. In 2017, he implemented the Quarterly Neighborhood Career Fair series to help extend career opportunities to Bostonians across all our neighborhoods and to create a pipeline of diverse talent. Additionally, Chief Tavares helped launch Employee Resource Groups (ERG) to foster workforce inclusion.
Partnering with the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development, Chief Tavares is looking at ways to increase supplier diversity and procurement opportunities for minority- and women-owned businesses in the greater Boston region.
Donny was born in Praia, Cabo Verde, but has called Boston home for the past 28 years. He and his five siblings were raised by their immigrant parents in Dorchester. Donny got his start in the Boston Public Schools before attending Thayer Academy and then UMass Amherst. Following his graduation from UMass in 2009, he served as a Legislative Aide in the Massachusetts State House for two years, before joining the City of Boston. In the administration of former Mayor Martin J. Walsh, Danielson previously served as a Special Assistant to the Mayor and as Deputy Chief Operating Officer, before taking on his current role as Chief Diversity Officer.
He holds a Master's degree in City Planning from Boston University. He has recently completed the Young American Leaders Program at Harvard Business School, and the Next Generation Executive leadership program at the Partnership Inc.
He sits on the board of trustees at his former middle school, Nativity Preparatory, the only tuition-free school in Boston aimed at helping young boys from low-income families. Donny is a member of the trustees of Charitable Donations for inhabitants of Boston, as well as the Ward 13 Democratic committee, where he continues to be an advocate for the residents of Dorchester.