Photography by Michael Blanchard

Everyone in Boston knows Mary! At first glance, a blonde bombshell, but there is a lot more to Mary J. Kakas. She is a dedicated community service volunteer and hardly ever says no to a request from friends working on a good cause.

Mary has been a member of Rogerson Communities’ Board of Directors for fifteen years and serves on numerous other charitable Boards. She is constantly running from one meeting to the next, changing outfits to get to dinner or cocktails and on to a party, arriving fashionably late. Mary loves mentoring young entrepreneurs and giving them advice, everything from fashion tips to how to start a business.

“Be authentic. Be yourself, whoever that self is.”

Mary worked closely with her former father-in-law and owner of Kakas Furs, helping to run the business and build the brand. “My father-in-law, George Kakas, was my mentor. He was a tough boss but I earned his respect because of my strong work ethic. He always said, ‘If you love your work, you’ll get in early and stay late.’ He taught me that there is a kernel of goodness in everyone.” Mary is President Emeritus and CEO of Edward F. Kakas & Sons, a family-owned business founded in 1858 in Boston.  Mary’s strong work ethic is evident in her philanthropic work today.

In May of 2018, Mary J. Kakas, the “feisty philanthropist and mentor to many,” passed away. She left us her pearls of wisdom.