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Jennifer C. Mulligan

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Published in The East Hampton Star on March 28, 2024

Jennifer Close Mulligan of East Hampton and New York “passionately contributed to many local charitable endeavors,” her husband, Jeremiah Mulligan, wrote. From the Ladies Village Improvement Society, “where she ran the cake booth at the annual fair,” to the East Hampton Library, where she was a board member and treasurer, and the town’s senior citizens center building committee, of which she was appointed chairwoman in 2023, Mrs. Mulligan “was an active participant in all that she did, from building houses to running marathons.”

A tennis player who won a variety of tournaments for her doubles play, she was on the tennis court in late July 2023 “when she noticed the first symptoms of A.L.S., or Lou Gehrig’s disease.” She died on March 2 at East End Hospice’s Kanas Center for Hospice Care in Quiogue. She was 76.

“Jennifer was known for her fun-loving spirit and dancing, her culinary mastery, and her love of puzzles,” her husband said. She was “an excellent baker whose desserts were in demand,” making her the perfect person to head up the breads, jams, and cakes booth at the L.V.I.S. Fair. She “took great care and pride in preparing her meals and especially desserts,” her husband wrote.

She was a strong supporter of the East Hampton Library’s annual Authors Night fund-raiser.

Mrs. Mulligan was born in Rockville Centre on Oct. 18, 1947, to Robert V. Close and the former Suzanne Lewis. She grew up on Long Island, graduating from St. Anthony’s High School in South Huntington, and then earning a bachelor’s degree from the University of Mount St. Vincent in Riverdale, the Bronx.

She and Mr. Mulligan were married on Sept. 30, 1978. They lived and worked in New York City but built a house that same year on Hand’s Creek Road in East Hampton.

From the 1970s through the mid-1980s, she worked in marketing and advertising in New York City with such firms as Norman, Craig & Kummel and J. Walter Thompson, with corporate clients including French’s mustard, Nivea hand cream, and Gillette razors. In the mid-1980s, she owned and operated Shoes on Parade, a Stride Rite children’s shoe store on Manhattan’s West Side.

“She built or renovated, decorated, and sold a variety of residential properties” in New York City and the Hamptons, her husband said, and in 2005 oversaw the renovation and updating of their own house in East Hampton.

Mrs. Mulligan was also “eternally dedicated to her garden.” She “could envision and design landscapes and then execute them,” her husband said, and had a spatial ability that was as sharp as her sense of color.

In addition to playing tennis, she was a dedicated runner who had completed several New York City Marathons.

In the early 2000s, she completed the certified financial planning program at New York University and in 2007 developed and published a proposed financial plan for the Town of East Hampton.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by a daughter, Julie Ann Mulligan Barish, and a son, John D. Mulligan, both of New York City, their spouses, Chris Barish and Sasha Mulligan, and two grandchildren, Mackenzie and Nicholas Mulligan. She leaves three siblings, Jeffrey Close of East Hampton, Mark Close of Huntington, and Mary Oppenheimer of Lakeville, Conn.

Her family has suggested donations in her name to Compassionate Care ALS, P.O. Box 1052, West Falmouth, Mass. 02574, or online at