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Hours before swearing in, Wu names several advisers to help with ‘seamless’ transition

Michelle Wu is bringing several members of her City Council staff to her administration.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

Just hours before she was slated to be sworn in, Mayor-elect Michelle Wu named several key advisers who will make up her core staff for the immediate coming weeks, helping to “ensure a seamless” yet rapid transition into office, her campaign team said.

Wu has previously said that the picture of her complete administration will not fully come into focus until January, when she plans a more formal inauguration along with City Council members. But with the quick transition after the Nov. 2 election required by city rules, the new appointments will help make up a core staff as the Wu administration takes power, she said.


The advisers include Mary Lou Akai-Ferguson, Wu’s campaign manager in her historic run for office, who will serve as interim chief of staff.

Wu also is bringing several members of her City Council staff to her administration to serve as senior advisers. They include Brianna Millor, who was Wu’s City Council office civic engagement director; Tali Robbins, who served as the City Council office’s policy director; and Dave Vittorini, who was the City Council office’s chief of staff.

Mariangely Solis Cervera, who served as constituency director for Wu’s campaign team, will also serve as a senior adviser to the mayor.

In addition, Wu announced that Mike Firestone, an attorney and director of the Coalition to Protect Workers’ Rights, will serve as chief of policy and strategic planning. Firestone had previously served as chief of staff to Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey.

Wu also said that Mariel Novas, who has served as Wu’s transition director, will continue in that role in the early days of the administration.

“I’m thrilled to have this dynamic team in place on day one,” Wu said in a prepared statement. “Each brings a wealth of knowledge, experience, and passion for service to City Hall, and they will be instrumental in helping our administration hit the ground running, continue to build and listen to community, and deliver for the people of Boston.”


Wu was sworn in earlier Tuesday during an inauguration ceremony at City Hall, a quick turnaround from Nov. 2′s historic election that saw her become the first woman, first person of color, and first Asian American elected mayor of Boston.

Last week, Wu named her first planned Cabinet appointments, with a focus on addressing the public health and safety crisis at Mass. and Cass, the intersection near Massachusetts Avenue and Melnea Cass Boulevard where the region’s opioid epidemic has been laid bare.

Over the last two weeks, she has met with city officials for a series of policy briefings on city matters ranging from snow removal to policing, though she has not announced a timeline for any new Cabinet appointments.

Milton J. Valencia can be reached at milton.valencia@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @miltonvalencia and on Instagram @miltonvalencia617.