Pavel Payano Headshot

Pavel Payano

Director of Community Mobilization
BA Political Science, UMass Amherst; MPA UMass Boston; JD Suffolk Law University

Pavel Payano (he/him/his) is joining the Social Innovation Forum (SIF) team in January 2021 as our first Director of Community Mobilization. In this role, he will be responsible for engaging more individuals, corporations, and community organizations in SIF’s unique community for social change through a range of development, communications, digital marketing, and community engagement efforts.

Pavel Payano, is a lifelong social justice advocate focused on policy issues dealing with public health, education reform, and community empowerment. He obtained a Bachelor or Arts in Political Science from UMass Amherst, a Master in Public Administration from UMass Boston, and a Juris Doctor from Suffolk Law University.

Understanding the importance of growing the local economy he assisted in establishing the Sandbox Initiative, a collaboration between UMass Lowell's Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the Deshpande Foundation, which sought to increase leadership and entrepreneurship in the Lawrence and Lowell area. As Program Manager of the Sandbox Initiative he helped establish the Mill City Leadership Institute which offers professional and leadership development to those in the private and non-profit sector.

His passion for education reform and youth empowerment has led him to serve as a Special Education Teacher for the Department of Youth Services and the Essex County Correctional Facility. He also served for seven years as a member of the Lawrence School Committee where he advocated for policies that lowered the achievement gap and increased enrollment in higher education. He currently spearheads initiatives to support small business, public education, and public health as a Lawrence At-Large City Councilor.