Volunteering Makes All the Difference

By Sue Ellen Woodcock

One might think that after teaching middle school students for 39 years that retiring and relaxing would be a high priority.

It would be for many, but not for Denise Mahoney.

“I wanted to be a dental hygienist. I didn’t want to teach, but I also didn’t want to go against my mother,” Mahoney said, reflecting on her years teaching reading in Revere, the city she grew up in.

But since the 1980s, Mahoney, a graduate of Salem State College, has lived in Winthrop and in her retirement she has devoted her time to serving the town in a volunteer capacity.

First, she began volunteering for the town through the senior tax work-off program nine years ago when she retired. In 2009, she became one of three members of the Board of Registrars of Voters.

Town Clerk Carla Vitale said “she’s a good do-bee. She comes back each year.”

Mahoney has help with voting records, census and more. She’s a pet lover and avid boater, choosing a motor (1978 Wellcraft) over a sail. Mahoney likes to stay busy. After she visits the YMCA she stops in to volunteer for the town and is fond of walking Revere Beach. She’s also active in the Winthrop Art Association.

“For the last five years, on New Year’s Eve, I help serve Chinese food at the Shattuck hospital,” Mahoney said.

To top it off…Mahoney is also one of the traditional members of the L-Street Brownies…and yes, she has taken the New Year’s Day plunge.

“She’s a woman who does it all,” Vitale said.

Mahoney has renovated her house herself. She knows how to plaster, paint and sew.

Anyone interested in volunteering for the town, Vitale said, can call the Town Manager’s office.

“Every department could use some help in some way, especially when you have gifts (like Mahoney) to give,” Vitale said.

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