I had the privilege of working with Tom McKay on a few committees and projects over the past many years, and I want to say “thanks” to him for his huge contribution to the ongoing cultural revival in Lowell. Tom understood that the cultural industry is pivotal to Lowell’s strength as a city. He saw the crowds week in and week out at Lowell Memorial Auditorium. With his partners, he put the Auditorium back on the cultural map in the city. Beyond the shows, he helped make the Auditorium a town-meeting hall, like a bookend on Merrimack Street matched with City Hall to the north.
We joked once about putting a ring of celebrity performer, speaker, and boxer names around the inside of the building the way the battle names ring the exterior at the top. The list is mighty impressive from his days, and even more so if you go back to the start. It would be something to see as you look around the beautiful venue. As others have said in the many tributes in recent days, he brightened any room he entered and generated energy with his positive vibe.
Tom McKay (Web photo courtesy of Middlesex Community College)