Stay at Home Dad Starts Postcard Company:
Mission Hill native balances fatherhood and entrepreneurship.

CONTACT: Tim Gallagher at 617.792.3612

Mission Hill, Boston (November, 2009) – For Mission Hill native Tim Gallagher, the birth of his son Leo created an opportunity to start a new life as house husband and entrepreneur. When Leo was born in July 2007, Tim and his partner Sascha Russel decided that Tim would stay at home as Leo’s principal caregiver while Sascha finished her advanced degree in Molecular Biology at Harvard University. For Gallagher, formerly a documentary film producer for PBS, the time at home with his son seemed an ideal opportunity to start a business that allowed him to balance child care with money-making. The Kittiwake Card Company was formed to sell funky, local postcards to Boston-area booksellers, stationers, grocers, and novelty shops.

Gallagher’s new role reflects a growing trend as more American fathers leave the traditional workforce while their wives pursue career paths outside of home. According to recent census reports, 160,000 American men have left the workforce to become principal caregivers (nearly three times as many as a decade ago but a tiny number compared with the roughly six million stay-at-home moms). Increasing numbers of these house-husbands are using their time at home to create businesses small and flexible enough to balance child care with money-making.

An avid postcard collector and traveler, Gallagher believed he could find a market for postcards that better capture the local color of Boston. “Once a small canvas for works of art and social commentary, the American postcard has really suffered from a lack of innovation and quality.” So Gallagher started the Kittiwake Card Company to offer consumers an attractive alternative to the current postcards available in Boston. "In the age of e-mail, I wanted to create postcards that consumers really love to send and receive. And what we've found is that our postcards appeal to both tourists and residents."

Gallagher hired an array of local photographers, from aspiring amateurs to professional artists, to photograph local attractions. The 85 available images include Kenmore Square, Jamaica Pond, the Sacred Cod, Fenway Park, the Zakim Bridge, and Boston Public Library (the full product line is available at Each image offers an unusual take on a well known attraction, and the copy on the rear of each card imparts something novel and peculiar about the place shown.

The postcards are available at many area retailers including the Harvard Bookstore, Brookline Booksmith, Porter Square Books and the Harvest Coop in Jamaica Plain. They proved to be incredibly popular. “They're our most popular stationery item,” states Carol Forsberg of the Harvest Coop in Jamaica Plain, “I’d say there’s a fair number of refridgerators in JP with a Kittiwake Postcard on it.” Kerri Budryk at the Brookline Booksmith in Coolidge Corner has a tough time keeping the postcards in stock, “sometimes a customer will buy 25 or more to use as invitations, we love the originality of the product and at 95 cents the Kittiwake Postcard offers our customers a wonderful, local item at low cost.”

According to Gallagher, “the past two years have really been magical. We sent out our birth announcements on the postcards and continue to use them as thank yous. Most weekdays, Leo and I visit our retailers to restock inventory and check in on business. Everyone is always so thrilled to see him, I think it’s a little unusual to have a child in tow as a traveling salesmen but our retailers are all local businesses as well. They understand what we’re trying to do, they like the product, and they really love Leo. He’s the best marketing director in the business, I hope he doesn’t demand a raise.”