Blue Hills Bank Foundation grant honors former Blue Hills Bank Board Member Karen O’Connell, Esq.

Hyde Park, MA – 

Leaders of both Mother Brook Arts & Community Center (MBACC) and Blue Hills Bank gathered earlier this week to dedicate MBACC’s newly finished ceramics studio in the name of Karen O’Connell, Esq.

Former economic development director for the Town of Dedham and board member for Blue Hills Bank, O’Connell passed away in 2015 at the age of 51 but left a legacy through the many she influenced in various leadership roles throughout Dedham and Hyde Park.

“Karen had exceptional vision and a passion for both arts and community,” commented president and CEO of Blue Hills Bank, Bill Parent. “Her legacy lives on here and in all of us who had the pleasure of working with her.” A multi-year grant from the Blue Hills Bank Foundation, totaling $125,000, was the primary source of funding for the Karen O’Connell Ceramics Studio.

“What an asset the ceramics studio is turning out to be for the community and for MBACC,” comments MCACC’s executive director Jean Ford Webb. “Karen saw the arts as an economic driver and that’s exactly what this studio is. We are honored to have it bear her name.”

MBACC’s mission is to use the arts to build a vibrant and sustainable center that enriches the Dedham community and stimulates the revitalization and growth of the Mother Brook neighborhoods.  MBACC is celebrating its 5th Anniversary this month.

Blue Hills Bank and the Blue Hills Bank Foundation give more than $1 million annually to nonprofit organizations in the Greater Boston area and Nantucket that provide services in the areas of arts & education, health & human services, affordable housing & community development, social & economic justice and financial literacy.

James Kaufman and Bill Parent

Photo: Blue Hills Bank President and CEO William M. Parent (R) and Mother Brook Arts & Community Center’s Chairman of the Board James D. Kaufman (L)


Blue Hills Bank is a full-service community bank headquartered in Hyde Park, MA. With assets of more than $2.7 billion, the bank serves businesses and consumers in Eastern Massachusetts and Nantucket online and through its 18 branches and loan offices. The Bank offers commercial financing, cash management and deposit accounts to businesses with an emphasis on building long term relationships with our clients. Founded in 1871 as Hyde Park Savings Bank, the Bank is celebrating its 148th year in business.