Barbara B. Kennelly

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Barbara Kennelly
Vice Chair of the House Democratic Conference
In office
January 3, 1995 – January 3, 1999
LeaderDick Gephardt
Preceded byVic Fazio
Succeeded byBob Menendez
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Connecticut's 1st district
In office
January 12, 1982 – January 3, 1999
Preceded byBill Cotter
Succeeded byJohn Larson
67th Secretary of State of Connecticut
In office
January 5, 1979 – January 12, 1982
GovernorElla Grasso
William O'Neill
Preceded byHenry Cohn
Succeeded byMaura L. Melley
Personal details
Barbara Ann Bailey

(1936-07-10) July 10, 1936 (age 87)
Hartford, Connecticut, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
SpouseJames Kennelly
EducationTrinity Washington University (BA)
Harvard University
Trinity College (MA)

Barbara Bailey Kennelly (born Barbara Ann Bailey; July 10, 1936) is an American politician. She is the former Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives from Connecticut.

Family and Education[edit]

Kennelly was born Barbara Ann Bailey in Hartford, Connecticut on July 10, 1936.[1] Her father was long-time Democratic Party leader John M. Bailey.

Kennelly studied at St. Joseph Cathedral School and graduated from Mount St. Joseph Academy in West Hartford in 1954. She earned a B.A. from Trinity College in Washington, D.C. (now Trinity Washington University) in 1958 and a certificate from the Harvard-Radcliffe Program in Business Administration in 1959.[2] In 1971, she earned a master's degree from Trinity College in Connecticut.[1]

Kennelly was married to the late James J. Kennelly, an attorney who served as Speaker of the Connecticut House of Representatives from 1975 to 1979.[3] She has three daughters, one son, and twelve grandchildren.


In 1975, Kennelly was elected to the Hartford Court of Common Council, a position she held until 1979. She served as the Secretary of the State of Connecticut from 1979 until 1982.[1]

Kennelly was elected to Congress in a special election to fill the vacancy caused by the death of William R. Cotter. She represented Connecticut's First Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives for eight terms, from January 12, 1982, until January 3, 1999. During the 98th Congress, Kennelly was appointed to the Ways and Means Committee. She served on the Subcommittees on Human Resources and Select Revenue Measures. Beginning in 1987, she served on the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. During the 103rd Congress, Kennelly became Vice-Chair of the Democratic Caucus.[1][4]

She did not seek re-election in 1998, running instead for Governor of Connecticut against Republican incumbent John G. Rowland, to whom she lost.[1]

In 1999, President Bill Clinton appointed her Associate Commissioner and Counselor to the Commissioner at the Social Security Administration. She later worked at the law firm Baker & Hostetler.[4] From 2002 to 2011, she served as President of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare.[5] In 2006, Nancy Pelosi appointed her to the Social Security Advisory Board.[4] In 2011, Kennelly accepted a position at her alma mater, Trinity Washington University, as a distinguished professor of political science.[6]

As of 2015, Kennelly is a member of the board of the International Foundation for Electoral Systems, a non-profit that provides assistance with elections in many countries.[7] She is the president of the United States Association of Former Members of Congress.[4]

The Barbara B. Kennelly Post Office Building in Hartford is named in her honor.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Kennelley, Barbara Bailey, (1936– )". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  2. ^ Lender, Jon; Keating, Christopher; Daly, Matthew (September 23, 1997). "Joining Governor's Race, Kennelly Changes The Political Map". Hartford Courant. Retrieved 3 November 2015.
  3. ^ "James Kennelly, 64, Hartford Legislator". The New York Times. October 12, 1995. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d "Barbara Kennelly, FMC President". United States Association of Former Members of Congress. Archived from the original on 23 September 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  5. ^ "OVERNIGHT MONEY: Sharing the stage". The Hill. April 4, 2011. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  6. ^ "The Honorable Barbara Bailey Kennelly '58, Former Member of Congress, Joins Trinity Faculty". Trinity. September 2011. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  7. ^ "Board". International Foundation for Electoral Systems. Retrieved 12 November 2015.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Henry Cohn
Secretary of State of Connecticut
Succeeded by
Maura Melley
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Connecticut's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by
Preceded by Vice Chair of the House Democratic Conference
Succeeded by
Party political offices
Preceded by Response to the State of the Union address
Served alongside: Les AuCoin, Joe Biden, Bill Bradley, Robert Byrd, Tom Daschle, Bill Hefner, George Miller, Tip O'Neill, Paul Simon, Paul Tsongas, Tim Wirth
Succeeded by
Preceded by Democratic nominee for Governor of Connecticut
Succeeded by
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded byas Former US Representative Order of precedence of the United States
as Former US Representative
Succeeded byas Former US Representative