Photo: © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston


Rosa Rodriguez-Williams MSW’99

The BC alum is the new senior director of belonging and inclusion at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts.

As a child, Rosa Rodriguez-Williams didn’t visit many museums with her family, who moved from Puerto Rico to Lawrence, Massachusetts, when she was 8 years old. “Being from the inner city, we felt that museums weren’t for people like us,” Rodriguez-Williams MSW’99 said. A few decades later, she’s now helping make one more inclusive. In September, Rodriguez-Williams—who built her career creating space for people from marginalized communities—was named the first-ever senior director of belonging and inclusion at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, where she'll work to ensure that guests of all backgrounds feel comfortable visiting the world-class collections. “This is a big place for me to open doors for people that usually would not walk through,” she said. —Alix Hackett 

“I love people’s stories, and art brings stories and narratives alive. When people put art on a canvas, to me it’s like their insides are being poured out. It’s a beautiful thing to be able to experience that here.”

“I’ve always been an activist. It’s always been at the forefront for me. It might seem new to some because the cries for racial justice and social justice are more in your face, but this work has been happening for a very long time.”

“Institutions and organizations—whether it’s a museum, a university, or a bank—realize that there’s a real shift happening. They have to look at and assess what they’re doing and move with this generation, or get left behind.”