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We are innovative, pro-active, strategic and disciplined. And we're making an impact.

Learn About FSGB

Since 1835, Family Service of Greater Boston has focused on improving the lives of children, youth and their families.

Family Formation

We ensure healthy cognitive, physical and social-emotional development in children by supporting strong families and teaching parents how to be effectively engaged.

Family Wellness

We enhance wholesome relationships by equipping families with the skills to resolve conflicts and improve communication.

Family Coping Skills

We help decrease violence, abuse or destructive behaviors in families by addressing the pressures that lead to such actions. To this end, we focus on healthy child development, youth risk reduction and leadership development, successful parenting skills and effective behavioral health management. These programmatic themes are reflected by leading Family Service initiatives that, taken together, promote overall family well-being and healthier, thriving communities.

Vision, Mission & History


Family Service of Greater Boston promotes self-sufficiency and well-being for at-risk urban children, youth and families by providing innovative, culturally competent, and integrated health and social services intended to contribute to healthy communities. Family Service fulfills this mission through sustained commitment to programmatic excellence in the areas of family formation, family wellness and family coping skills.


Our mission at Family Service of Greater Boston is to break the cycle of intergenerational family disadvantage. We promote the self sufficiency and well-being of at-risk children, youth and families by providing innovative, culturally competent and integrated social services to help people reach their fullest potential.

Every day Family Service helps children and families facing life's most difficult challenges. We aim to continue in the tradition of shaping a healthier Boston by developing and supporting programs to meet the needs of city residents confronting the most damaging effects of poverty, discrimination, violence and isolation.

A Rich History of Service to Boston

Few American social service organizations claim as rich a history as Family Service of Greater Boston, which traces its roots to 1835—during Andrew Jackson's presidency and only 13 years after Boston's incorporation as a city. We have served children, youth and families through the wide sweep of the American experience—during the Civil War, two World Wars, Great Depression, civil rights and women's movements, and the technology revolution.

The early charities that evolved into Family Service introduced ideas and methods of "self-help" that underlie the modern concepts of community service and philanthropy. Family Service has carried on the traditions of social innovation which characterized its predecessors. Adapting to changing needs, we continue to meet the requirements of new generations of residents struggling to overcome the most damaging effects of poverty, discrimination, violence and isolation. Today, as throughout our history, we promote self-sufficiency and well-being as essential to building healthy families and communities.

Vision, Mission & History

Senior Staff

Gisele Michel
Gisele Michel
Gisele Michel

Interim Chief Executive Officer

Gisele comes to us from Icatalyst Consulting, where she serves as the Founder and Managing Director. Through her years of professional experience, Gisele has successfully helped diverse organizations of varying sizes and missions through transition phases. Gisele is affiliated with Third Sector New England.

Learn more about Gisele

Deborah Abelman
Deborah Abelman
Deborah Abelman, M.Ed., Ph.D.

Director of Education, Training, and Evaluation

As the Director of Education, Training, and Evaluation, Deborah's role is to provide leadership to FSGB's educational programs, training activities, and evaluation/data collection systems.

Learn more about Deborah

Her responsibilities include: overseeing the operations of education programs, operations of training activities, and operations of activities necessary for FSGB's program evaluation and data collection processes. Deborah began her tenure at FSGB as the first Education Specialist for the Strong Start program in August 2011. As the program grew she became the Education Supervisor, and in January 2015 took on her current role. Before coming to FSGB Deborah worked in state government agencies, academia, and in non-profit private and public education agencies. Deborah received a B.A. in Linguistics from Brandeis University, an M.Ed. in Early Childhood Special Education from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and a Ph.D. in Early Childhood Special Education from the University of California at Berkeley with San Francisco State University.


Patricia Kiessling
Patricia Kiessling
Patricia Kiessling, MSW, LICSW

Director, Family Based Services

Patricia Kiessling, MSW, LICSW, has worked for FSGB since 1999 as clinician, supervisor, manager, now director of Family Based Services. Her career has been dedicated to working with children, youth and families primarily in community and home based settings in various roles.

Learn more about Patricia

She has strived to maintain a diverse, committed, qualified, compassionate and caring group of staff at FSGB to assist families to identifying their concerns, needs, goals and work toward an improved way for family interactions and child behavioral health.


France A. Neff
France A. Neff
France A. Neff, LMHC, BCC, CAGS

Director, Family Independence Teen Living Program
Interim Director, Center for Behavioral Health

France has served as the director of our teen parent residential program for the past 17 years with passion and commitment to helping each teen develop the skills to create a stable environment for their children, so that both mother and child can reach their full potential.

Learn more about France

She believes that we can all reach our potential with a little bit of guidance and encouragement. She provides life coaching, mental health services, personal and professional development for individuals and families. France also serves as clinical supervisor, coaching others in best practice and effective documentation.

France is currently attends the Chicago School of Professional Psychology, perusing a Doctoral degree in International Psychology. She received a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies and Master of Education in Counseling Psychology form Cambridge College. France earned her Bachelor of Arts in Child Psychology and Performing Arts with a focus in Dance at The University of Saint Joseph (formerly St, Joseph College).


Board of Trustees

2015 Membership
*Denotes new board member

Evelyn V. Moreno President
Thomas Hart Vice President
Robert G. Bannish Vice President
Dennis J. Leonard Vice President
Joann Noble Vice President
Christopher White; Vice President
Tricia Tilford Treasurer
John O'Connor Assistant Treasurer
Sarah T. Connolly Clerk
Amy Snelling Assistant Clerk
Name Affiliation
Robert G. Bannish Principal, Rice Heard & Bigelow, Inc.
Alexy Boudreau, MD Pediatrician, Massachusetts General Hospital
Stacy Cloutier Trust Analyst, Choate Hall & Stewart LLP
Sarah T. Connolly Partner, Nixon Peabody, LLP
Yael Frydman, DMD Orthodontist, Private Practice, Course Director at Boston University
Deborah Gordon CEO, Voxent
Daren Graves, Ed.D. Asst Professor/Director, Urban Education Program, Simmons College
Thomas Hart Chief Marketing Officer, Eliassen Group
Dennis J. Leonard President, Delta Dental of Massachusetts
Evelyn Moreno Partner, Nixon Peabody LLP
Joann Noble Executive Vice President, First Trade Union Bank
John O'Connor Portfolio Manager, Battery Global Advisors
Amy Snelling Account Director, Sapient Nitro
Tricia Tilford Certified Public Accountant
Anne Trinque General Counsel, Fiduciary Trust Company
Christopher White Managing Director, Institutional Fixed Income Sales & Trading, Detwiler Fenton & Co.