The American Textile History Museum in Lowell, MA has honored Massachusetts State Senator Eileen Donoghue with the 2014 Community Service Award, an award given annually to individuals and organizations that contribute to making our communities a better place to live, work and visit.
“For more than 20 years, Eileen Donoghue has had a profound influence on the quality of life in our region through her service as a respected attorney and dedicated public servant, caring deeply for our citizens and giving selflessly of her time and her talent and her heart,” said Jonathan Stevens, President and CEO of the American Textile History Museum. “As a cultural institution that celebrates the innovation, creativity, and human spirit that have shaped our world, ATHM is proud to present this award in appreciation and gratitude for all Senator Donoghue does for our community.”
Since 2000, the Community Service Award has been awarded to an individual or individuals who show outstanding community service through their good works, exemplary volunteer service, compassion, and involvement with the community. The 2014 award was presented at a gala on Friday, November 7, at the University of Massachusetts Lowell Inn & Conference Center.
An affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, the American Textile History Museum has dedicated more than 50 years to preserving the past and shaping the future by telling America’s story through the art, science and history of textiles. In addition to its core exhibition and rotating special exhibitions, ATHM holds the world’s largest and most important publicly held collections of tools, spinning wheels, hand looms, and early production machines, as well as more than five million pieces of textile prints, fabric samples, rolled textiles coverlets, and costumes.
A graduate of University of Massachusetts in individualized concentration in law and Spanish, Eileen Donoghue earned her Juris Doctor at Suffolk University Law School in 1979. After twelve years of practicing law, Senator Donoghue opened her own firm in the City of Lowell in 1991, joining Gallagher & Cavanaugh in 2008. Senator Donoghue was elected to the Lowell City Council in 1996 and two years later was elected for her first of two terms as mayor. During her tenure as mayor, she was proud to champion some of the most historic and important economic development projects for the city, including the Tsongas Arena, LeLacheur Park, the construction and renovation of 17 schools, and the development of the artist overlay district, which resulted in more than 800 new artists’ lofts now occupying formerly abandoned mills.
A second-term State Senator from the First Middlesex District, Senator Donoghue was first elected to the Massachusetts State Senate in November 2010. She serves the communities of Lowell, Dunstable, Groton, Pepperell, Tyngsborough, and Westford.
“In her years in the Senate, Eileen has been a champion for public safety and for pension reform, committed to reining in government spending and realizing savings for taxpayers,” said Gala Co-Chair Terry O’Connor in introducing Senator Donoghue. “She has successfully fought to increase Local Aid funding for cities, towns and local school districts without raising any new taxes. Most importantly, Eileen has been there for our communities, listening to her constituents and fighting to give us the resources we need to maintain and improve our quality of life. She has been a thoughtful and bold voice for action and change on issues that are important to Lowell and the Merrimack Valley.”
In early 2013, Senator Donoghue initiated legislation to create a commission to study the feasibility of hosting the Summer Olympics in Boston.
“The American Textile History Museum is an important part of that cultural community and creative economy that is driving Greater Lowell into the future,” said Senator Donoghue in accepting the award. “The Museum stands as a model of how something of great beauty and strength can be created when the individual threads of our community come together for a common purpose. The American Textile History Museum and its history are woven into the rich fabric of our community and our lives. It’s an honor to be recognized as one of the many, many threads that help to hold it together.”
The event was made possible through the generous sponsorship support of the following: Platinum Sponsors: Demoulas Foundation and Nancy and Richard Donahue; Gold Sponsors: The Battles Foundation and Brown Brothers Harriman; Silver Sponsors: Linda Carpenter and Lawrence Ardito, Circle Health, Carol and George Duncan, Enterprise Bank, Jack and Terry O’Connor, and Ruth and Fred Ward; Benefactor Sponsors: Marcia Cassidy Communications, John and Linda Chemaly, Elkus Manfredi Architects, Newell Flather, Gallagher & Cavanaugh, Timothy P. Horne, Lowell Five, Lowell National Historical Park, Lowell Sun Charities, Middlesex Community College, Pearson & Pearson LLC, Kathleen and Scott Plath, Sage Bank, Jonathan and Priscilla Stevens, Elaine Zouzas Thibault and John Thibault, and University of Massachusetts Lowell.