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Segun Idowu

Chief of Economic Opportunity and Inclusion

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A lifelong resident of Boston, Segun is a proud product of the Boston Public Schools. Following his graduation from Boston Latin Academy, he earned his Bachelor of Arts in History at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia, and honors from the Phi Beta Kappa and Golden Key Societies.

In August 2014, Segun organized the Boston Police Camera Action Team (BPCAT) with his colleague, Shekia Scott. BPACT’s mission was to further accountability and safety in Boston through the mandatory use of police body-worn cameras. As a result of their efforts, Boston began a yearlong mandatory body-worn camera pilot program and policy in September 2016. In 2018, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh announced a $2 million investment in a permanent citywide body-worn camera program.

In 2018, Segun was elected to serve as the first Vice President for the Boston chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the first chapter of the oldest civil rights advocacy organization in the nation. In this role, he managed the much heralded and research intensive report card project that assessed the city’s efforts and results in addressing systemic racial disparities.

In 2019, Segun stepped off the NAACP board to join the board of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Massachusetts and focus on other board obligations at Mass Budget and Policy Center, Southwest Boston CDC, and the New Leaders Council (NLC). He also advised initiatives at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and the Metropolitan Area Planning Council.

Beginning in November 2018, Segun served as the President and CEO of the Black Economic Council of Massachusetts, Inc. (BECMA), the chief advocacy organization for Black businesses across the Commonwealth. BECMA represents the over 2,000 Black firms that employ 17,000 Massachusetts residents and generate over $2B in annual revenue. In this role, he helped transform the organization, including growing membership by 300%; tripling the budget to help develop new services; increasing staff support to more than ten people; expanding the footprint of the organization beyond Boston’s limits to communities across the Commonwealth; establishing dozens of partnerships with local business support organizations, as well as with local and state government officials and entities; shepherding key pieces of state legislation to successful ends, helping to reshape the procurement process for Massachusetts and direct millions in relief grants to small businesses; and working with allies to file a federal civil rights complaint against the City of Boston when reports showed a lack of contracts awarded to diverse small businesses.

In April 2020 and 2021, Boston Magazine recognized Segun as one of the “100 Most Influential People in the City of Boston.” In July 2020, the Boston Globe recognized him on the front page of their Sunday edition as a “Man of the Moment” for his work in ramping up BECMA’s efforts to advocate for and direct resources to Black businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Globe also honored him as a “Bostonian of the Year” later that December. In 2021, Lawyers for Civil Rights recognized Segun as their “Keeper of the Flame,” and Eastern Bank recognized him as their “2021 COVID Warrior.”

Segun stepped down from his role as BECMA’s CEO in December 2021 in order to join the Wu Administration as the Chief of Economic Opportunity and Inclusion, beginning this role on January 3, 2022. In this new position, he is focused on making Boston a resilient, economically equitable, and vibrant city that centers people and creates opportunities to build generational wealth for all communities.

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