Remembering James E. Kennedy, D.D.S., M.S.
With sadness, we share the news of James Edward Kennedy’s passing. Dr. Kennedy served as dean of the VCU School of Dentistry from 1977 to 1983. As former chair of the Department of Periodontics, he enhanced the school’s standing in the research community and moved to forge a stronger relationship with alumni. Kennedy later served as dean of the University of Connecticut School of Dental Medicine. He played a huge role in the establishment of our periodontics department and residency program.
James E. Kennedy, 85, of Avon, Connecticut, husband of the late Louise “Nan” Douglass Kennedy, passed away peacefully Wednesday, July 7th, 2021. A native of Troy, New York, Kennedy received a B.S. degree from Union College in Schenectady where he received the John Quinlan Memorial Scholarship.
He earned his D.D.S. degree in 1962 from the University of Pennsylvania. After four years in the Army, which included a general dental internship at Fort Benning, Georgia, and duty as a dental officer at Fort Devens, Massachusetts, he entered the periodontics program at the Eastman Dental Center, and received his certificate of training in that specialty along with the M.S. in Dental Science from the University of Rochester in 1969.
Dr. Kennedy joined the faculty of the VCU School of Dentistry as associate professor and chairman of the Department of Periodontics in 1972. He was named Dean of the School of Dentistry in 1977. He left VCU in 1983 to become Dean at the University of Connecticut’s School of Dental Medicine, the position he held until November of 1997 when he was named Dean Emeritus and continued his appointment as professor of periodontology. Dr. Kennedy retired on July 1, 2001.
With the American Association of Dental Schools he served as Chairman of the Council of Deans, seven years on its Executive Committee, Vice-President for Deans, and eventually President of the AADS for 1986-87. He was the recipient of the Alumni Award of Merit by The University of Pennsylvania. In 1986, one of the research efforts he developed was recognized by the American Academy of Periodontology by selection of a paper describing results of the project for its Clinical Research Award.