Ayanna Pressley

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Ayanna Pressley
Ayanna Pressley at the Reggie Lewis Center Cropped.png
At-Large Councillor of the Boston City Council
Assumed office
January 2010
Preceded by Sam Yoon
Michael F. Flaherty
Personal details
Born (1974-02-03) February 3, 1974 (age 43)
Chicago, Illinois
Political party Democratic
Residence Dorchester, Massachusetts
Profession Boston City Councilor
Committees Chair of the Committee on Women & Healthy Communities
Website City Council
Ayanna Pressley

Ayanna Pressley is a member of the Boston City Council in Boston, Massachusetts. She is the first woman of color to be elected to the council in its 107-year history.[1]


A native of Chicago, Pressley attended Boston University, but dropped out to support her mother who lost her job.[2] After leaving Boston University, Pressley worked as a Senior Aide for Congressman Joseph Patrick Kennedy II and United States Senator John Kerry. During 2009, Pressley served as Kerry’s Political Director, responsible for managing his relationships with elected officials at the city, state and federal level and with various community leaders.[3]

Pressley was first elected to the Boston City Council on November 3, 2009. The only woman in a field of 15 candidates, Pressley earned one of four At-Large spots on the city’s 13-member council with nearly 42,000 votes. After being sworn in on January 4, 2010 she became the first woman of color to serve in the 100-year history of the Boston City Council.[4]

In 2011, Pressley faced a highly competitive reelection campaign, but finished first among At-Large candidates with 37,000 votes. She won 13 of the City’s 22 wards and finished 2nd in three others. Pressley dominated Boston’s communities of color and progressive neighborhoods.[5]

Pressley topped the ticket again in 2013 and 2015.[6][7]

In 2015, EMILY's List honored Ayanna Pressley at a large reception in Washington, D.C. and presented her with their annual "Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award." [8][9]


  • Women & Healthy Communities (Chair)
  • Public Safety Committee (Vice Chair)
  • Special Committee on Federal Stimulus Oversight (Vice Chair)
  • Arts, Films, Humanities & Tourism
  • City, Neighborhood Services & Veterans Affairs
  • Economic Development & Planning
  • Education; Government Operations
  • Ways and Means

Personal life[edit]

Pressley lives in Dorchester with her husband, Conan Harris, and her stepdaughter.[10]


External links[edit]