Edward M. Kennedy Jr.

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Edward M. Kennedy Jr.
Member of the Connecticut Senate
from the 12th district
In office
January 7, 2015 – January 9, 2019
Preceded byEdward Meyer
Succeeded byChristine Cohen
Personal details
Edward Moore Kennedy Jr.

(1961-09-26) September 26, 1961 (age 62)
Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Kiki Gershman
(m. 1993)
Parent(s)Edward M. Kennedy
Joan Bennett
RelativesKennedy family
EducationWesleyan University (BA)
Yale University (MS)
University of Connecticut, Hartford (JD)

Edward Moore Kennedy Jr. (born September 26, 1961) is an American lawyer and politician. He is a partner at Epstein Becker & Green, a firm headquartered in New York City, and previously represented Connecticut's 12th State Senate district in the Connecticut State Senate from 2015 to 2019. He is a son of Senator Edward M. "Ted" Kennedy Sr. from Massachusetts and a nephew of President John F. Kennedy and Senator Robert F. Kennedy.

Early life and education[edit]

Kennedy was born in St. Elizabeth's Hospital in the Brighton section of Boston, Massachusetts to Ted Kennedy and Joan Bennett Kennedy during the presidency of his paternal uncle, John. He is the brother of Kara (1960–2011) and Patrick J. Kennedy (born 1967).

In 1973, when Kennedy was twelve, osteosarcoma (a form of bone cancer) was diagnosed in his right leg. The leg was surgically amputated on November 17, 1973. On that same day, his father had escorted his niece Kathleen down the aisle at her wedding and rushed back to the hospital. A made-for-TV movie, The Ted Kennedy Jr. Story (1986), concentrated on this event in young Kennedy's life.[1][2]

In 1982, his mother, Joan, revealed that Kennedy missed by just ten minutes being aboard Air Florida Flight 90, which crashed into the Potomac River on January 13 of that year, killing 74 people. Kennedy was delayed on the drive to the airport and missed the flight.

Kennedy graduated from the private St. Albans School, in Washington, D.C. After completing a Bachelor of Arts degree at Wesleyan University, in Middletown, Connecticut, in 1984, he continued his studies at Yale University, in New Haven, Connecticut, earning a master's degree from the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.[3] He then attended the University of Connecticut School of Law at night, earning a Juris Doctor degree.[4] On May 19, 2013, Kennedy received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of New Haven.[5]


After graduation he worked at the New Haven law firm Wiggin & Dana specializing in disability issues. He later co-founded and served as president of the Marwood Group, a firm that advises corporations about health care and financial services. He left the Marwood Group in 2014 to join the law firm of Epstein Becker & Green where he advises health care providers, commercial insurers, and life science companies on critical issues related to health care reform policies.[3][6][7]

Kennedy is the Chairman of the board of directors of the American Association of People with Disabilities.[8]

Political career[edit]

On April 8, 2014, Kennedy announced his candidacy for a seat in the Connecticut State Senate representing the state's 12th district.[9] He was elected on November 4. He was re-elected on November 8, 2016.[10] In both election cycles, Kennedy defeated Bruce Wilson Jr.[11][12]

On June 26, 2017, Kennedy announced that he would not run for Governor of Connecticut in 2018.[13] On February 28, 2018, Kennedy announced he would not seek re-election to the Connecticut State Senate.[14] On November 6, 2018, Democrat Christine Cohen won the general election to replace Kennedy after defeating Republican Adam Greenberg.[15][16] She was later sworn in on January 9, 2019.[16]

State Senate[edit]

Kennedy was first sworn in to serve in the Connecticut State Senate on January 7, 2015.

Committee assignments

  • Committee on the Environment (Senate Co-chair)
  • Committee on Internship (Ranking Member)
  • Committee on Public Health
  • Committee on Transportation

Party leadership

  • Deputy Majority Leader[17]

Personal life[edit]

With Kiki during a trip to Bangladesh (2022)[18]

On October 10, 1993, Kennedy married Katherine Anne "Kiki" Gershman (born 1959)[19] on Block Island, Rhode Island. She is an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at the Yale School of Medicine at Yale University and an environmental advocate. She serves as spokeswoman for Stop the Pipeline, which successfully blocked the Islander East natural gas pipeline across the Long Island Sound. They live in Branford, Connecticut.[20][21][22][23]

The couple have a daughter, Kiley Rose Kennedy (born August 7, 1994, in New Haven),[24] a competitive snowboarder who graduated from Wesleyan University in 2016, and a son, Edward Moore Kennedy III (born February 26, 1998, in New Haven), who graduated from Choate Rosemary Hall in 2016 and from Wesleyan University in 2020.

Kennedy gave a tribute to his father at his father's public funeral on August 29, 2009.[25]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Staff Writer (October 8, 2010).The Doctor's World. New York Times. Accessed March 1st, 2012.
  2. ^ O'Connor, John J. (24 November 1986). "'TED KENNEDY JR. STORY,' A FAMILY BIOGRAPHY (Published 1986)". The New York Times. Retrieved 19 January 2021.
  3. ^ a b "Edward M. Kennedy, Jr". 31 January 2024.
  4. ^ Staff Writer (July 29, 2008). Ted Kennedy Jr. Raises Profile Archived 2011-12-14 at the Wayback Machine. The CTMirror. Accessed March 1st 2012.
  5. ^ "University of New Haven : Ted Kennedy Jr., Sen. Murphy to address UNH..." Archived from the original on 26 June 2013.
  6. ^ Staff writer (Undated). "Welcome". Marwood Group. Accessed September 1, 2009.
  7. ^ Staff writer (Undated). "Marwood Group LLC". BusinessWeek. Accessed September 1, 2009.
  8. ^ Staff writer (Undated). "Meet our Board of Directors" Archived 2010-03-16 at the Wayback Machine. American Association of People with Disabilities. Accessed August 31, 2009.
  9. ^ Weizel, Richard (April 8, 2014). "Ted Kennedy Jr. announces run for Connecticut state senate seat". Yahoo! News. Retrieved June 26, 2017.
  10. ^ "Incumbent Democratic state Sen. Ted Kennedy Jr. wins 12th Senate District". New Haven Register. Nov 8, 2016. Retrieved Jun 26, 2017.
  11. ^ "Kennedy, Wilson face off again in 12th District". Middletown Press. October 25, 2016. Retrieved July 31, 2020.
  12. ^ Carlin, Sean (May 8, 2014). "Madison's Bruce Wilson Jr. to challenge Ted Kennedy Jr. in 12th Senate District". New Haven Register. Retrieved July 31, 2020.
  13. ^ Altimari, Daniela (June 26, 2017). "Kennedy Jr. Will Not Run For Governor In 2018". Hartford Courant.
  14. ^ Vigdor, Neil (February 28, 2018). "Ted Kennedy Jr. Won't Seek Re-Election To State Senate". Hartford Courant.
  15. ^ "Guilford Election Results 2018: Local Winners Revealed". 6 November 2018.
  16. ^ a b "New General Assembly sworn in with". 9 January 2019.
  17. ^ "The Voter's Self Defense System".
  18. ^ Dhaka, U. S. Embassy (2022-10-24). "U.S. Embassy to Host Edward M. Kennedy, Jr. for 50th Diplomatic Anniversary Celebration". U.S. Embassy in Bangladesh. Retrieved 2022-11-28.
  19. ^ Staff writer (October 11, 1993). "Weddings; Dr. Gershman, E. M. Kennedy Jr". The New York Times. Accessed August 23, 2009.
  20. ^ Staff writer (February 14, 1993). "Engagements; Dr. Gershman, Edward M. Kennedy Jr.". The New York Times. Accessed August 23, 2009.
  21. ^ Zaretsky, Mark (December 2, 2008). "High Court Sinks Plan for Natural Gas Pipeline" Archived 2012-09-15 at the Wayback Machine New Haven Register. Accessed Aug. 27, 2009.
  22. ^ Russell, Jenna (September 13, 2009). "Son shuns spotlight, but not duty". The Boston Globe.
  23. ^ "Ted Kennedy Jr. Of Branford won't run for Senate in '12- the New Haven Register - Serving New Haven, Connecticut". Archived from the original on 2012-09-15. Retrieved 2011-04-05.
  24. ^ Brozan, Nadine (August 8, 1994). "Chronicle". The New York Times. Accessed August 23, 2009.
  25. ^ Video (August 29, 2009). "Kennedy Jr. on His Dad". CBS News's module at YouTube. Accessed September 1, 2009.

External links[edit]