Commending The Honorable Sybil E. Kennedy upon the occasion of her retirement after 50 years of distinguished service to the Town of...

download pdf

Sponsored By



Senate Resolution No. 2470

BY: Senator JACOBS

COMMENDING The Honorable Sybil E. Kennedy upon the
occasion of her retirement after 50 years of
distinguished service to the Town of Grand Island,
New York

WHEREAS, It is the sense of this Legislative Body to recognize and
pay tribute to those singular individuals who devote their purposeful
lives and careers to preserving the rights and protecting the welfare of
the citizens of their community and the State of New York; and

WHEREAS, This Legislative Body is justly proud to commend The
Honorable Sybil E. Kennedy upon the occasion of her retirement after 50
years of distinguished service to the Town of Grand Island, New York;

WHEREAS, In 1955, Sybil E. Kennedy moved to Buffalo, New York, where
she graduated from Bryant & Stratton Business Institute and attended the
University of Buffalo, Millard Fillmore College; five years later, she
and her husband, James P. Kennedy, moved to Grand Island, New York; and

WHEREAS, Also in 1955, Sybil E. Kennedy began her long and
distinguished career in law working as a legal assistant for attorneys
Francis "Bud" Pritchard and Edward W. Kinney; throughout her 62-year
career, she worked with several judges and attorneys, including her
daughter; and

WHEREAS, In 1970, Sybil E. Kennedy was asked to help out for a few
weeks in the Grand Island Court and went on to hold the position of
Chief Clerk of the Court for over 30 years; in this capacity, she
traveled around New York State teaching newly-elected judges and court
clerks practices and procedures in town and village courts, was a member
of both the Local Court Advisory and the Judicial Agency Coordinating
Committees, served as Conference Chairman, and was the town's first
Marriage Officer; and

WHEREAS, Realizing how important it was for clerks to be properly
trained, Sybil E. Kennedy and 10 other clerks founded the New York State
Association of Magistrates Court Clerks, which today, has a membership
of over 1,500 clerks; and

WHEREAS, In 2000, Sybil E. Kennedy was the first woman to be elected
Town Justice for Grand Island, the title from which she officially
retired in 2019; and

WHEREAS, Throughout her tenure, Judge Sybil E. Kennedy was committed
to helping those who struggled with addiction and victims of domestic
violence; she instituted a First Time Last Time problem solving program
in hope of early intervention, and was instrumental in forming domestic
violence programs which are currently used throughout the State of New
York; and

WHEREAS, Moreover, Judge Sybil E. Kennedy was a vital member of the
Erie County and New York State Association of Magistrates; and

WHEREAS, In addition to her work with the Grand Island Court, Sybil
E. Kennedy has been involved with numerous other local organizations
including the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce, St. Stephen's Church,
the Grand Island Zonta Club, the PTA, Girls Scouts, Junior Football, and
the Lions Club, as well as the Independence Parade Committee; and

WHEREAS, This remarkable woman was also a Director of the Board of
Directors of Sponsors of the United States Navy, having christened a
minesweeper, the USS Heroic, during World War II, which was built in a
shipyard owned by her father and grandfather; and

WHEREAS, Devoted to both her profession and community, Justice Sybil
E. Kennedy was named the 1978 Grand Island Citizen of the Year -
Government, the 1984 New York State Magistrates Association Court Clerk
of the Year, and the 2019 Grand Island Citizen of the Year; and

WHEREAS, With her throughout have been her children, Deborah
Kennedy-Rogoza and James P. Kennedy, and her five grandchildren, Randy,
Lauren, Kevin, Bridget and Jack, all of whom feel privileged to be a
part of her life and rejoice in her achievements; and

WHEREAS, The quality and character of life in Erie community has
been ably served and uniquely enriched through the selfless dedication
and benevolent concern of Justice Sybil E. Kennedy; and

WHEREAS, In her capacity as Grand Island Justice, Sybil E. Kennedy
served with loyalty, honor and distinction, was governed by a keen sense
of duty and always showed a unique grasp of human problems in her
official acts; and

WHEREAS, A singular asset to all of the citizens she has served,
Judge Sybil E. Kennedy's life and career are a portrait of preeminence
in public service, and present a role model for all who aspire to a
career in public service; and

WHEREAS, Judge Sybil E. Kennedy, in every capacity in which she
served, has left her permanent mark on the criminal justice community
and will forever be remembered as a determined, innovative and genuinely
concerned expert in her field; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That this Legislative Body pause in its deliberations to
commend The Honorable Sybil E. Kennedy upon the occasion of her
retirement after 50 years of distinguished service to the Town of Grand
Island, New York, and to wish her well in all her future endeavors; and
be it further

RESOLVED, That a copy of this Resolution, suitably engrossed, be
transmitted to The Honorable Sybil E. Kennedy.


  • 10 / Jan / 2020
  • 14 / Jan / 2020
  • 14 / Jan / 2020

Resolution Details

Law Section:
Resolutions, Legislative


Open Legislation comments facilitate discussion of New York State legislation. All comments are subject to moderation. Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity or hate speech; or that link to sites outside of the nysenate.gov domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Comment moderation is generally performed Monday through Friday.

By contributing or voting you agree to the Terms of Participation and verify you are over 13.