Nassau County Clerk Maureen O'Connell began her professional career as a Registered Nurse at North Shore University Hospital after graduating from Flushing Hospital and Medical Center School of Nursing. As an R.N., she designed and implemented the H.O.M.E. pilot program for the home-based management of cancer patients of North Shore University Hospital. She also co-authored numerous articles regarding hospice care.
Ms. O’Connell holds a B.S. in Health Care Administration from St. Joseph's College and earned her Juris Doctor from St. John's University School of Law, receiving the American Jurisprudence Award in Insurance Law. She combined her knowledge of law and health administration by practicing in the areas of civil litigation, elder law and health regulatory compliance in the second largest law firm in Nassau County at the time.
Ms. O’Connell is a member of the Nassau County Bar Association having served on the Medical-Legal and Elder Law-Social Services-Health Advocacy Committees, and a member of the Oncology Nursing Society. She has served the community as a member of the Mercy League of Roslyn and the Willistons, and the American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Detection team.
Ms. O'Connell also served as Trustee and Deputy Mayor of the Incorporated Village of East Williston from 1991 through 1998. She serves on the Board of Directors of the St. John’s University School of Law Alumni Association and the Maternity & Early Childhood Foundation. In addition, she is a member of the School of Nursing Advisory Boards of Nassau Community College, Molloy College, and State University of New York at Farmingdale, as well as an adjunct faculty member of the Adelphi University School of Nursing. Ms. O’Connell has been named one of the 50 Most Influential Women in Business by Long Island Business News.
In February 1998, Ms. O’Connell was the first woman elected to the New York State Assembly to represent the 17th District, which included parts of the towns of Hempstead and North Hempstead, Nassau County, New York. During her tenure as State Legislator, Ms. O’Connell served as the Ranking Member of the Assembly’s Health Committee and in 2001, chaired the statewide taskforce on the critical shortage of nurses. She also served on the Assembly Judiciary, Insurance and Ethics Committees. She was a member of the Sexual Assault and Violence Education (S.A.V.E.) taskforce on sex crimes and violence against women and children. Ms. O’Connell developed a distinguished record of constituent service and promoted numerous community based programs. Further, she worked on numerous measures that were enacted into law.
In November 2005, Ms. O’Connell was elected countywide to the Office of Nassau County Clerk and overwhelmingly re-elected to a second term in 2009. Since taking office and under her direction, the County Clerk’s Office processed over a million backlogged records. With the assistance of state grants awarded to the office, Ms. O’Connell implemented a conversion of paper land records to the electronic platform currently in place. Through the implementation of enhanced technology to further modernize the office, new initiatives have been developed including a pilot project for the electronic filing of documents for State Supreme Court actions, which is a model for other counties throughout New York State. In addition, the ability to accept other types of documents for recording in an electronic format has been developed and is continually expanded upon. Ms. O’Connell’s goal for the County Clerk’s Office is to provide the optimal level of service to the resident of Nassau County in an efficient and secure manner.
A lifelong resident of Nassau County, Ms. O'Connell resides in East Williston with her husband Don where she raised her son.