East Boston’s Kathy Orlando, a longtime advocate for youth, girls and families in the neighborhood was among those honored with, the 2018 Unsung Heroine by Mass Commission on the Status of Women.
Orlando, who serves as president of East Boston Girls Softball and as a board member of the East Boston Community Development Corporation, was nominated for the award by Rep. Adrian Madaro for her outstanding contributions to the community.
Madaro said Orlando’s tireless dedication and outstanding contribution to Eastie was reason enough for him to make the recommendation to the Mass. Commission on the Status of Women.
Orlando accepted the award during a recent ceremony at the State House’s Great Hall honoring this year’s Unsung Heroine award winners.
“Kathy is a strong community activist, tirelessly advocating for the youth and families of East Boston,” said Rep. Madaro. “As President of East Boston Girls Softball, Kathy transformed the organization into one of East Boston’s finest and most popular youth sports programs. Kathy serves as a board member of the East Boston Community Development Corporation where she helps local families find affordable housing and advocates for increases to East Boston’s affordable housing stock. Kathy works to ensure that the community can remain a place where those who want to stay, can.”
Madaro added given East Boston’s rapid gentrification, this work is critical.
“Kathy is active on the Ward 1 Democratic Committee where she helps plan community building events, from clean-ups to voter registration drives,” he said. “Kathy is an agent of positive change and one of East Boston’s most well-respected and noble members.”
According to the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women, an independent state agency created to advance women in the state, the Unsung Heroines are women who don’t make the news, but make the difference.
“They are the women who use their time, talent and enthusiasm to enrich the lives of others and make a difference in their neighborhoods, cities and towns,” said Executive Director Jill Ashton. “They are mentors, volunteers and innovators who do what needs to be done without expectations of recognition or gratitude. These women are the glue that keeps a community together and every community is better because of their contribution.”
Sen. Joseph Boncore said Orlando’s work is about building community for everyone and with everyone.
“She works tirelessly to preserve the fabric of our community,” said Boncore. “Further, Kathy understands that young people are empowered by adults that invest time into their development. Our community is better off because of the investment that Kathy makes into our youth. She leads them and empowers them to be positive influencers in East Boston.”