Frederica M. Williams
President and CEO
Whittier Street Health, Boston

“I am here to be a servant leader,” Frederica M. Williams says of her role as president and CEO of Whittier Street Health Center, located in the Roxbury section of Boston. Whittier offers comprehensive health services, regardless of a patient’s ability to pay. Williams, who has more than 25 years’ experience in health-care administration, strategic planning, finance and operations management in England and the United States, has been at its helm for nine years.

Under her direction, the center embarked on a campaign to increase health-care access, featuring, among other elements, a men’s health summit, on-site public housing, health screenings and an arts therapy program. Williams has streamlined operations, diversified its funding sources and developed entrepreneurial services. And she has seen the number of patients served increase to 14,500 from 5,000 during her tenure.

“My role at Whittier has presented me with the wonderful opportunity to use my entrepreneurial skills and put my social justice mission into action to improve the lives of vulnerable and underserved communities in Boston,” she says.

Her goal is to serve 24,000 patients by 2015 – to ensure that “deaths from preventable diseases are significantly reduced in communities of color.”

Born in Sierra Leone and educated in London and the United States, she was raised with a strong sense of commitment to philanthropy. Williams is a member of the boards of trustees for Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers and Boston Health Net and serves on the advisory boards of Global Health / International Women’s Health Initiative, African Health Foundation and the African Community Health Initiative.

Williams has a bachelor’s degree in business administration and finance from the London School of Accountancy, a master’s in business administration from Anna Maria College in Paxton, Mass., and a graduate certificate in administration and management from the Harvard University Extension School.  

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