Sylvia Ferrell-Jones

(she/her/hers) Retired President & Chief Executive Officer

Sylvia Ferrell-Jones joined YW Boston in late January 2007, after 25 years in the fields of real-estate investment management and non-profit governance and executive leadership. At YW Boston, she has shepherded a dramatic shift in the organization’s focus, leading towards greater financial stability and enhanced programmatic outcomes.

For twenty years, Sylvia focused on management of real-estate based assets, serving as a director at AEW Capital Management, headquartered in Boston, and as a principal investment officer with the state of Connecticut Trust Funds, with portfolios ranging up to $2 billion.

Subsequently, Sylvia served as Director of Agency Development for Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, where she provided governance, management and fundraising consultations to a $26 million not-for-profit affiliate portfolio.

Sylvia earned her bachelor’s degree from Cornell University and her juris doctor from Yale Law School. She has held leadership roles with numerous community and professional organizations, including local, regional and national real estate organizations; the Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ; Big Brothers Big Sisters of America; Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay; LeadBoston; and The Partnership. 

Sylvia currently serves on the board of directors for United Church Funds; Andover Newton Theological School; and the Wellesley Centers for Women, and sits on an advisory board for Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce Women’s Network, and the corporate advisory board for Women of ALPFA (Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting). 


After over ten years of extraordinary leadership, Sylvia Ferrell-Jones retired from YW Boston on September 14th to focus on health and family. YW Boston has set up the following fund in her name:

The Sylvia Ferrell-Jones Fund honors the legacy of this visionary leader’s decade of passion and commitment as YW Boston’s President and CEO. The funds directly support YW Boston’s work to eliminate racism and empower women, and promote peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. To donate in her honor, click here.