Kate O'Donnell

Photo of Kate O'Donnell

Kate grew up in Dartmouth, Massachusetts but came to Western Mass as an undergraduate at Mount Holyoke College. After graduation, Kate went to work in Hotel/Restaurant sales and catering working for The Delaney House in Holyoke, MA where she met her husband, Chris, and Max Restaurant Group at the Bushnell Theater in Hartford, CT as the Assistant Director of Catering. 

Kate left the restaurant world behind in 2004 to start her family and is proud mother of 3 beautiful children, Erin, Molly and Ryan. While staying home and caring for her children, Kate discovered a love for fitness and wellness and started her own company, Paper City Fitness, that was committed to equal and affordable fitness for all, regardless of traditional barriers to wellness. Her Zumba classes in particular were so welcomed in the city of Holyoke that she was the subject of a short documentary in 2013, (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=As8WonqW880) that chronicled the impact of Paper City Fitness's mission. She was the recipient of numerous awards from community organizations and received the City of Holyoke's prestigious Civic Pride Award and a mayoral proclamation from Mayor Alex Morse commending Paper City Fitness's efforts to bring fitness and wellness to the community of Holyoke. Kate was also chosen by the American Heart Association as a "Go Red for Heart Health Leading Lady" in 2013.This work led to becoming a Community Partner with Kelly Full Service Community School in Holyoke in 2013 where Kate taught Zumba to elementary and middle school students as part of their physical education classes. The culmination of this work is documented here by the Holyoke Public Schools: https://vimeo.com/97160802.

In 2014 Kate was hired as a reading tutor at Kelly School and was recommended for participation in the Mount Holyoke MAT program by her principal and is currently employed as a fourth grade teacher at Kelly School.  While pursuing her initial license in Elementary Education, Kate also completed additional licenses in Moderate Disabilities and English as a Second Language, was a MATSOL co-presenter "Using the Teaching and Learning Cycle to Support ELLs in the Mainstream Classroom," co-presenter at Mount Holyoke College's Back to School for Alumni: "A Partnership: Holyoke Public Schools/Mount Holyoke College Urban Teacher Pathways Program," and member of the Holyoke Public Schools PLC regarding Language Acquisition and the Over-identification of ELLs as Special Education Students."

She loves to read anything and everything, knit and golf with her family.