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Community organizing, working in the schools; 'I’m a mama of many hats'

Community organizer Francesca Marie Boyd talks about loving what's good about Rochester.

Francesca Marie Boyd.JPG
Francesca Marie Boyd.
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Why does a former Minneapolis mom love Rochester? Well, between the small-town feel and the work Francesca Marie Boyd does impacting the lives of kids, there's no better place than the Med City.

Though she'd love a good soul food restaurant.

Are you originally from the Rochester area?

No my family and I originated from northside Minneapolis and we moved down to Rochester in 2007. We came down here because the housing was more affordable than it was in the Twin Cities at the time.

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What do you like best about Rochester?

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What I like most about our Rochester is it’s a country within a city. You can be in the city within five minutes and in the next five minutes you could be out in the country and you can see all the wildlife, and if you go to Walmart you know pretty much everybody’s name. It feels like a hometown where everybody knows your name.

What changes do you think still need to be made?

I don’t believe things need to be changed. I think some add-ons need to happen as far as representing the brown community. More hairstyle salons or maybe even a soul food restaurant. Rochester brings everybody together and we need to start understanding and embrace the other side of our community. I think we're on the right track of doing things.

What do you do for a living?

I’m a mama of many hats. I already work for Rochester Public Schools as a para. I chose this career because I absolutely love kids and they are the brightest piece of this world. Growing up it was a teacher who taught me how to fish and taught me to open up and discuss my feelings. Teachers are our front-liners of anything that’s going on with a child. I like seeing their little brains working when they have a problem, and then seeing their eyes light up when they find the solution, so it became natural to me to become involved in the school district.

What one piece of advice would you give someone looking to pursue the same career?

One piece of advice I will give someone pursuing the same career is don’t go in there thinking that you’re going to change the world. Just think about teaching one child at a time and seeing that light bulb go off when they didn’t understand something before but now they get it.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment and what has been the greatest challenge you've had to overcome?

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I will say one of my greatest achievements so far is my kids. They are the bright spot in my life right now. But I will say I’m still trying to achieve the greatest achievement. I have many things that I dream about and there are many goals on my list, So, yeah, my achievements are not complete yet. As for what challenges I have overcome, I will say this is a hard one for me because I shy away from difficult challenges. I need to learn to go ahead with them so I can achieve more of my goals and my dreams.

What is one thing most people don't know about you? 

This one’s a funny question for me because a lot of people know me here in Rochester, so I don’t shy away from my words or my feelings and I’m pretty straightforward. But I would love to travel. That is one of my dreams.

Get to know ... is a feature in Rochester In Color, a special section within the Post Bulletin's website that profiles people of color in our community. Find it at www.postbulletin.com/rochester-in-color . If you know of someone who should be featured, send us an email at news@postbulletin.com

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