Steczynksi earns prestigious Barr Foundation grant

Zumix Founder and Director Madeleine Steczynski has been awarded a fellowship from the Barr Foundation in recognition of her extraordinary work in the field of non-profit youth development. The Barr Fellows Program honors the contributions of the most gifted and experienced leaders in the Boston area.

“We congratulate Madeleine Steczynski on her selection and are pleased to provide her with this opportunity to reflect on her accomplishments.” said Pat Brandes, Executive Director of the Barr Foundation. “Her leadership is important to the future of Boston.”

The three-year Barr Fellowship includes a sabbatical, a journey to Haiti and a series of retreats.

Madeleine Steczynski is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Zumix as well as an East Boston resident. Together with her Board and Youth Advisory Board she has built Zumix from a grasssroots effort to a $700,000 operation.

As an active advocate for the arts in East Boston, she has served on the Executive Committee for East Boston Healthy Boston Coalition, and was one of the original innovators of the Cultural Connections initiative.

She is an Artistic Fellow for The Boston Foundation’s Arts and Audiences Initiative, and a Community Fellow for Eureka Communities Boston. She also served for three years as a Cultural Fellow for the New England Foundation for the Arts Building Communities through Culture Initiative.

Recently Steczynski was chosen to present as part of the 2006 Social Innovation Forum at MIT. She is currently participating in Achieving Excellence, Executive Leadership Training through the Massachusetts Cultural Council and the Hauser Center at Harvard University. Barr Fellows were selected based on their past contributions to the community, their potential to continue to contribute at a high level into the next decade, and their demonstrated capacity to learn from their peers locally and globally. Their organizations will receive financial support to promote organizational development and the mentoring of new leaders, as well as to ensure effective interim management during the executive’s sabbatical.

The Barr Foundation is a private foundation committed to enhancing the quality of life for all of Boston’s citizens. Its primary areas of emphasis are education and the environment. Barr also provides support to arts and cultural activities.

Zumix was founded in 1991 in response to the worst year of violence in Boston’s history. For over 19 years Zumix has inspired Boston youth through songwriting and performance, music technology, instrumental music, community radio, and other arts programs.

Zumix recently renovated and moved into the Engine Company 40 Firehouse featuring a state-of-the-art performance space, radio station, recording studio, and music production lab. This new space will allow Zumix to positively impact the lives of Boston teens as they continue to grow.

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