by Mary Monahan, Associate | Director of Business Development
Happy National Public Works Week! Mary Monahan, Director of Business Development, served many years in the public sector. For this important week, we asked her to think about why she got into public service.
I have a passion for public works. It started at a young age. My dad was an alderman in the City of Holyoke for more than 25 years. I grew up listening to him talk to residents and business owners about their needs in their neighborhoods. Almost always it was public works: sidewalks for students so they could safely walk to school; expansion of public water to a development where private wells were contaminated; drainage to eliminate basement flooding; regulations requiring upgrades to the sewer plant; signals to address increased traffic; better plows so residents could see the pavement sooner; and more.
My dad shared with me his own affinity for public works. I overheard the conversations with the DPW Super, other aldermen, and the mayor on how to get these projects done. The money for these issues was frequently not there. Lack of funds did not get DPW off the hook. DPW had to make things right despite the limited funding – and they did. Just like today, they counted on the dedication, expertise, and commitment of DPW staff to find a better and affordable way to make things happen.
My colleagues and I at Fuss & O’Neill feel privileged to team with DPWs throughout New England. We know we’re working with dedicated women and men successfully maintaining the health, safety, and quality of life for the residents in their communities. I remember my dad sharing ideas with the superintendent and the crews on how to keep things afloat and make them better. We know that today’s public works crews and local officials are still having these same conversations and we want to say: “Thank You!”
About the Author:
Mary Monahan is a municipal public works specialist well-versed in issues related to stormwater management; wastewater collection and treatment; drinking water supply, treatment, and distribution; solid waste management; and sustainable operations. Mary serves as a liaison between the public works project owner and the design team. She has helped communities successfully apply for more than $20 million in assistance from various programs, including USDA Rural Utilities Service, State Revolving Fund, Chapter 90, MassDEP 319 and 604b grant programs, Coastal Zone Management, Community Development Block Grant, and Massachusetts Green Communities grant program. Mary works with the project teams to develop public education and outreach programs for print, web-based, and video mediums.