My name is Kelly Dennehy. I am an MBA candidate at Babson College, class of 2019 with concentrations in Entrepreneurship and Finance. I am a neuroscientist by trade, having spent 10 years at the bench - though my recent work has been focused on innovating strategy to drive scientific discovery with a primary emphasis on patient experience. Even though I'm a native New Yorker, I've made Boston my home and have worked at Partners Healthcare, MIT, Harvard, Broad Institute, and PatientsLikeMe. I feel deeply committed to the community in which I live and work, and I am proud to Chair the Advisory Board for the Friends of Lovin' Spoonfuls. Additionally, I’ve been a member of Junior League of Boston since 2013 and have chaired community committees: Arts and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) with my most recent involvement focused in Finance Council.
My professional experience has always centered on the human experience - whether it be working on the scientific underpinnings of addiction and mental health, research and clinical operations, and most recently – developing strategic initiatives for the startup Biotech community. With this work comes an inherent responsibility to understand the conditions and landscapes, which require these solutions. I feel particularly drawn to organizations that focus on social justice. I've been working with Junior League of Boston for five years, because as a woman in science - I've seen first hand the barriers to entry, and lack of resources designed to escalate female visibility and opportunity in the space. I developed the STEM program for JLB, and worked to implement the curriculum in public schools throughout the city. I also worked on the Arts committee as I feel strongly that everyone should have access and be exposed to a well-rounded childhood experience, and the Arts is a space that we're in danger of losing - it's so important to preserve the tradition of expression for young people.
I've recently taken on the position of Chair for the Friends Advisory Board of Lovin' Spoonfuls. If there's one fundamental thread that connects and unites a community, it's food. Food access and food justice appeal to me on so many levels: the biological necessity of food as true sustenance, the right to healthy food for all people, and the actual ability to access that healthy food. ‘Spoonfuls addresses all of these issues and many others - by a simple, logistics driven mission that rescues healthy food that would otherwise go to waste, and distributes that food to over 35,000 hungry people across Greater Boston each week. We are building the Friends program to encourage everyone to engage in accessible philanthropy early in their careers, and have a hand in providing a vital service to the community. Building this initiative is very much a start-up in itself, and the reason I'm so committed to it is the operational construct. It's community service, philanthropy and volunteerism - all tied to very tangible outcomes.
I was diagnosed with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis about 4 years ago, and the experience has inspired me to use my professional background to research and advocate for those with complicated and difficult to diagnose conditions. I believe Boston has so much opportunity for everything I'm passionate about, and I feel incredibly lucky to live and work here! The city is big enough to connect to global resources, and small enough to see progress and advancement almost immediately.
SPARK IMPACT AWARDS
SPARK Boston is Mayor Walsh’s millennial engagement initiative. Our mission is to engage the next generation of civic leaders and social entrepreneurs in the work of city government. From dedicated public servants to community builders and connectors, millennials are some of Boston’s most impactful citizens. Each year, the City of Boston celebrates the millennial contribution to our city with the Annual SPARK Impact Awards.