Roslindale Neighbors: New director of RVMS settles in

Alia Hamada Forrest has recently been promoted to executive director of Roslindale Village Main Street (RVMS) from her previous position as programs manager.

Having found a different job at the end of August, the previous director resigned, leaving Forrest to take over on Sept. 12. Forrest had been working at RVMS as a program manager for over a year.

“I think it’s really valuable for district and business owners to have a consistent contact. I feel lucky, and I hope they feel good about my new role, too.”

With her executive director manual in hand, Forrest will be entering holiday season with double the workload, but hoping to finalize a hire for the program manager position by November.

“Most Main Street districts have one full time staff member, but we usually have two, which means we’re used to a bigger work load,” Forrest said.

RVMS is the oldest and largest Main Streets office in Boston, and over 30 years old.

Forrest has been a Roslindale resident for three years, and has been working in the nonprofit sector for seven. Her experience is from various organizations, from production editor at a publishing company, to AmeriCorps, to Boston Cares, to volunteer coordinator at a meditation center.

“I love this job,” Forrest said. “It’s a mix of everything I’ve been doing in my life so far. You have to wear many different hats when you work in a Main Street office.”

The biggest challenge in Forrest’s new role will be tackling the problem of Roslindale’s vacant storefronts. The strategy for activating storefronts will be with art and possible pop-up shops for the holiday seasons.

Forrest shared with the Gazette some recommendations, including her favorite hidden gem of Roslindale: Diane’s Bakery. She recommends their breakfast croissants for being delicious and affordable.


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