Lee Hall is the first building on campus named after a woman.
On Sept. 18, Manhattan College changed the name of East Hill Hall, the College’s newest residence, to Lee Hall. The building is named in honor of Margaret Lee O’Malley, the mother of Thomas O’Malley ’63, former chairman of Manhattan’s board of trustees, and is the first building on campus named after a woman.
Thomas O’Malley, executive chairman of PBF Energy Company LLC, and his wife Mary Alice have maintained a commitment to supporting the College’s mission since Mr. O’Malley’s graduation in 1963. The College recognized his continuous dedication in 2002 by renaming the renovated library the Mary Alice and Tom O’Malley Library, and also awarded him a Doctor of Humane Letters at the 2012 Spring Commencement. In addition to his nearly 50-year professional career, he has served on the boards of several educational and charitable organizations.
"The O'Malleys’ extraordinary generosity is a major source of our strength as an institution," said Brennan O'Donnell, president of Manhattan College. "We are proud that Lee Hall will stand as a tribute to a woman who was such a source of strength for her family."
Margaret Lee was born to Irish immigrants in 1916, and grew up during the Depression. She married James O’Malley, and raised two sons while working as a practical nurse. Lee insisted that her younger son, Thomas O’Malley, attend Manhattan College, and he graduated in 1963.
Although the residence hall is named Lee Hall, it is also a tribute to all the women — mothers, teachers, administrators and staff — who have made a difference at Manhattan College.
The College dedicated Lee Hall on Sept. 18, and a plaque now hangs in the first floor entrance of the residence hall in Margaret Lee’s memory.
“If my mom were here today,” O’Malley said, “her greatest pleasure would not be the naming of the building but rather that her daughters in-law, her granddaughters, her great-grand daughters, and indeed all the women who attended Manhattan College can advance as far as their talents take them — particularly here at Manhattan where they can be recognized by this great College for what they accomplish.”