About

SMAMS won Boston Main Streets designation in the summer of 1999. We are a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) corporation that brings together local businesses, residents, neighborhood organizations and corporate sponsors to revitalize the St. Marks Area business district and strengthen the entire community. The commercial district includes more than 100 businesses in almost 400,000 square feet of commercial and institutional space, and serves more than 30,000 residents, workers and commuters.

smams Office

Our Goals

  • Serve the needs of the area’s residents, businesses, commuters and visitors
  • Raise the profile of the commercial district(e.g. banners, kiosks, etc.)
  • Increase merchant participation in the Main Street organization, including established businesses and the expanding Vietnamese business community
  • Provide merchants with technical assistance and with financial and design assistance for storefront renovations
  • Recruit appropriate businesses to fill vacant storefronts
  • Play a leading role in large-scale development projects

Our Accomplishments

  • Participating in renovation of Ashmont MBTA station, focusing on station design and development of new commercial space
  • Participating in design and construction of the Carruth Building, a Transit-Oriented Development at Ashmont Station featuring affordable and market rate housing plus prime commercial space
  • Leading the community process resulting in the redesign of the Peabody Square intersection, featuring new roadway layout, additional green space, and a passive stormwater filtration system
  • Developing strong relationships with corporate sponsors Trinity Financial, Carney Hospital, and Vargas & Vargas Insurance.
  • Conducting a comprehensive study of the neighborhood economy.
  • Leveraging over $400,000 worth of storefront improvements with a $50,000 investment
  • Participating in renovation of the historic Peabody Square Clock
  • Sponsoring a visit by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to tell local merchants about services the SBA can offer. Included a visit, with translator, to all Vietnamese-owned businesses in district
  • Publishing The SMAMS Connection e-newsletter
  • Participating in redevelopment of “The Banton Street Lot,” a large vacant lot in the heart of the district
  • Holding promotional events to publicize the district and its businesses: Dorchester Day cookouts; Dot Ave Scavenger Hunts; “Deck the Windows” window decorating celebration; “Look at Those People!” and “Art on the Avenue” sculpture exhibits; “Boston Unwrapped” holiday party and stroll accompanied by distribution of business directories and coupons for local merchants.

Organizational Structure

Board of Directors

Tim Deihl, President (The Residential Collaborative)
Thomas Carroll, Vice President
Jim Buckley, Clerk
Jack Pelletier, Treasurer
Kevin Bronski (Metalsmiths, Inc.)
Jack Cunningham
Steve Datish
Christopher Douglass (Ashmont Grill, Tavolo Ristorante)
Jeffrey Gonyeau
Ida Kallman
Christa Lee-Chuvala
Rose McMullin
Leonard Osborne
Philippe Saad (Back To Life Chiropractic & Wellness)
Stephen Wilkins

Executive Director

Meaghan Overton

Committees

Committees are a great way to get involved with SMAMS! All are welcome to attend committee meetings. For up-to-date information about upcoming meetings, contact us at office@smams.org.

Community Events and Public Space: Steve Datish and Steve Wilkins, Co-Chairs
The Community Events and Public Space Committee works to ensure that our local businesses and the district are good places to shop, work, and play. We do this by sponsoring and participating in events like the Ashmont/Peabody Square Farmers’ Market that help bring our community together. Contact: Steve Datish (sdatish@gmail.com) or Steve Wilkins (rcsw6@aol.com).

Development and Historic Preservation: Jack Pelletier, Chair 
The Development and Historic Preservation Committee works to promote positive development in the district. This includes leading community input on major development projects such as the Ashmont Station renovations and the Trinity Financial Transit-Oriented Development project at the station; working with the City on a design study for infrastructure improvements; working with the Boston Redevelopment Authority on the Dorchester Avenue Project; and originating and co-sponsoring a youth charrette as part of the Avenue Project. Contact: Jack Pelletier (jackpelletier@yahoo.com).

District Beautification: Tim Deihl and Christa Lee-Chuvala, Co-Chairs
The District Beautification Committee works to create a cleaner, more attractive and pedestrian-friendly business district with a cohesive physical appearance. This includes storefront renovations, signage replacement, new decorative streetlights, an anti-litter campaign, a public art project, and a design study to plan infrastructure improvements. Contacts: Tim Deihl (deihlre@gmail.com) or Christa Lee-Chuvala (cleechuvala@gmail.com).

Fundraising and Promotion: Leonard Osborne, Chair
The Fundraising and Promotion Committee promotes our Main Street program through outreach to other neighborhood groups, recruiting new members to the program, and publicizing the program in the media. The Committee also works to bridge the gap between City and corporate funding and our total expenses. We sponsor several fundraising events throughout the year as well as write grant applications. Contact: Len Osborne (leonardosborne@comcast.net).

Local Business Development and Recruitment: Jim Buckley, Chair
The Local Business Development and Recruitment Committee promotes and steers economic development in the SMAMS business district consistent with stated community goals. We accomplish this by: Recruiting businesses that show market potential; Facilitating meetings between prospective businesses and building owners; Referring owners and tenants to sources of financial and technical assistance; and Building relationships with property and business owners. Contact: Jim Buckley (historybuckley@yahoo.com).

Organizational Steering Committee: Tim Deihl and Tom Carroll, Co-Chairs
SMAMS Board Meetings are open to the public, and are usually held the third Thursday of every month from 6:30-8pm at the SMAMS office. Anyone is welcome to attend and participate in discussion. Votes and executive sessions are limited to board members only. Contact: Tim Deihl (deihlre@gmail.com) or Tom Carroll (tpcarroll@statestreet.com).

Advisory Council

James Brett
The New England Council

Thomas Callahan
Mass. Affordable Housing Alliance

Rev. Egobudike E. Ezedi, Jr.
Morning Star Baptist Church

Hon. Maureen Feeney
Boston City Clerk

Rev. John Finley
Epiphany School

Rev. Dan Finn
Saint Mark Church

Donna Latson Gittens
Causemedia

Gail Hobin
University of Massachusetts Boston

Claire Hughes
UMass Medical School

James W. Hunt, III
Northeast Utilities

John O’Toole
Olde Towne Real Estate

Bob Scannell
Boys & Girls Clubs of Dorchester

Earl Taylor
Dorchester Historical Society

Hon. Charles C. Yancey
Boston City Councilor