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August 21, 2021



RIP Rosalie.
Thank you for your service.
I'm reminded of a Bill Clinton quote about Tip O'Neil (I think) but it is true of Rosalie. "She could disagree with you without being disagreeable"
She had that personal touch that not only remembered your name but your children's names.


O'Mahony maybe the last representative that truly was an advocate for her "People." In my experiences with her you could "tell from the start" this Women is Ethical, Honorable, and spoke truth to "Power."
Rosalie will be missed.


Well, best case, she would be the second-to-last one ... wink, wink ...

The Chronicle obit is here: https://www.legacy.com/us/obituaries/sfgate/name/rosalie-o-mahony-obituary?pid=199836730

Jennifer Pfaff

Thanks for posting, Joe, Winnie, Holly. I was also thinking back about how certain decisions of hers really made a difference over time… In particular, the importance of Bayfront zoning with hotels as an essential (and largely) reliable TOT revenue source; the care taken to redirect the design of the mid-1990s main library seismic project and addition. Because of her leadership on Council at the time, the community ended up with an award-winning design that preserved the historic façade, with a large addition that blends pretty seamlessly.

I think she also steered the California Drive Firehouse ...though I'm pretty sure it is a completely new structure-top to bottom- the old late 1920s plans were used but enlarged for modern firetruck equipment.

Though the Safeway meeting was a real "nail-biter classic" (thanks for the memories, Joe) it would be hard to forget a 1990s packed chamber meeting where she mercilessly took on Caltrans for not having done their CEQA history related homework regarding the significance of the El Camino Trees;

and though controversial at the time (because of costs) she committed 200+K funds (this was a lot of $$$, at the time) to restore and rehabilitate the old Greyhound Bus Depot on Howard at California Drive. This was used on and off for seminars and classes, but was eventually the second location of Sam’s Sandwiches for a decade or so, and now a temporary outpost for the Parks and Recs folks).

The Broadway grade separation was a huge infrastructure project she (and others) have talked about for literally decades. I’ll bet she thought she might live to see that one completely funded, and started, too; she was so determined.

Not only did she accomplish all this (and more), she remained relevant long after she’d left the Council,involving herself in all the oversight committees, and also other community issues and personal passions.

We've lost a big jewel on Burlingame's crown; she was a force to be reckoned with--'no doubt about it.


This morning's service at St. Catherine's was an appropriate send-off for Rosalie. She attended Mass at OLA and St. Catherine's, and the priestly duties were split with Fr. James Stump from OLA saying the Mass and Fr. John Ryan from St. C's doing the closing Final Commendation.

Mayor Ann O'Brien Keighran gave a lovely homily that reminded everyone of some ROM history that many of us had forgotten. Rosalie's long time friend Pat Kinsella gave a great rendition of "Rose of Tralee"--both drawing applause.

As I told Syed Murtuza, the Director of Public works and a dear friend of "The Queen of Infrastructure", I think Rosalie would have liked seeing the two big excavators from the El Camino roadway project parked next to the church. It felt like they were there in her honor.

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