2024 Philanthropist of the Year: Kevin O’Connor
Kevin graduated from the University of Maryland with a business degree in 1996. A few years later, he joined his family business, O’Connor Plumbing, where he is the CFO and oversees Business Development. The family business, O’Connor Plumbing, has over 70 years of industry experience. They have helped thousands of companies and property managers in the DC Metro area with their commercial plumbing needs. Working with my father and brother for 25 years has been a gift.
A proud resident of Ijamsville, Kevin lives with his wife, Laura, and daughters, Ella and Audrey, who attend Urbana High School. Ella is a member of the YMCA of Frederick County, and both girls take advantage of the Y and opportunities to spend time with friends.
Kevin’s involvement with the YMCA started when his friend John McConnell, Regional Vice President at NVR Homes, asked him to join the YMCA’s Fore the Kids Golf Tournament committee five years ago. The proceeds from this event provide summer camp financial assistance to youth in our community who cannot afford to attend. After serving on the committee for several years, Kevin and John became co-chairs.
Kevin said, “It is a great feeling to help kids attend summer camp, as I still have memories of attending camp as a kid.”
While watching TV with Laura one night, we saw a story of a young girl who started a charity to help kids in a Head Start program. Laura said we need to do something similar. I contacted Tom Clingman, VP of Social Responsibility at the YMCA of Frederick County, who told me our local Y has a Head Start program. O’Connor Plumbing partnered with the Y to start a winter coat drive that helps provide coats, hats, boots, and other winter clothing for children in the Head Start program. The YMCA also told us about a couple of families that needed extra support with Christmas gifts, so over the last few years, we have sponsored several Head Start families with Christmas gifts as well. Our goal is to spread the word and get people involved in helping those less fortunate in our community.
“This past year we received so many coats we could provide coats not only to our Head Start children but some of their siblings as well,” said Nina Blackner, Family Engagement Coordinator at the YMCA of Frederick County Head Start.
At the Y, we connect people to a greater sense of purpose and each other to strengthen our community. Join us and discover what a gift it is to give.