Ethnic GEM, Sheena Collier

Ethnic GEM: Sheena Collier

Title: Founder & CEO 

Company:  Boston While Black & The Collier Connection  

State: Boston, MA



Submitted by Leonard Webb


A Reimagined Boston Where Black People Can Thrive

Boston While Black was founded by Sheena Collier, a natural connector, convener, and strategic planner who moved to the Boston area 17 years ago to attend Harvard Graduate School of Education. As a Black woman, she struggled to feel a sense of belonging at school and in the city. She missed the connection to Black culture and community that she grew up within Albany and when attending school in Atlanta but didn’t want to leave the new opportunities available to her in Boston. So, she began building her community, making connections while learning to navigate the city.

Sheena began building her own community and making connections while learning how to navigate the city. As her network and knowledge grew because they have the spaces, tools, and relationships to find their tribe, grow their network, navigate the city, and have fun.

Sheena’s previous roles include Director of Economic Opportunity at the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and Boston Promise Initiative Director at Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative. She is a 2023 and 2022 recipient of the Boston Magazine 150 Most Influential Bostonians; 2022 Boston Business Journal Power 50 Movement Makers; 2021 Get Konnected Most Impactful Women; 2020 recipient of the Harvard Club Boston’s Most Influential Women award; 2020 recipient of YW Boston’s Academy of Women Achievers Sylvia Ferrell-Jones Award; 2018 recipient of the GK25 – Who is Who Millennial Leaders of Color Awards; 2017 and 2018 nominee of the Ad Club’s Rosoff Awards; and a 2016 recipient of the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce’s Ten Outstanding Young Leaders Award.

Sheena received her BA from Spelman College and her Ed.M. from Harvard Graduate School of Education. She is a proud board member of Union Capital Boston and the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, an advisory board member of Boston Harbor Now, an investor in the Boston Ujima Fund, and a member of the Black Economic Council of Massachusetts (BECMA).

Find Your Tribe – Grow Your Network – Navigate the City – Have Fun

Since that time, the Boston While Black network has grown to include young professionals, community activists, business leaders, creatives, politicians, and some of Boston’s largest employers who all share Sheena’s goal of creating a community where Black people can find each other, network, discover what the city has to offer and have fun.

A Vital Infrastructure for Belonging

The growing network of members communicate through a safe, private online forum where they can share experiences, local business recommendations and professional opportunities.

Making a Space for Black Experiences, Community, and Culture

Events are held regularly and are designed to encourage members to connect, share and have fun. The venues embrace Black culture and community to provide members a place where it’s safe to be authentically themselves.


If you know Sheena Collier be sure to congratulate her on being an Ethnic GEM!




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