Victoria Reggie-Kennedy is an attorney and advocate for issues that affect the lives of women, children and families, such as homelessness, economic opportunity, health care, education, domestic violence, and involvement in the political process. She was a powerful advocate for the enactment of health care reform, which her late husband Senator Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA) called the cause of his life, and was standing at President Obama’s side at the White House as he signed the landmark reform legislation into law in March 2010. She continues to advocate for the law and against its repeal and explain its benefits to constituency groups around the country.
Described by the New York Times as “Senator Ted Kennedy’s Closest Confidante, in Politics and Life,” Reggie-Kennedy is the co-founder and a trustee of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate in Boston and is a member of the Advisory Board of the Edward M. Kennedy Oral History Project at the Miller Center at the University of Virginia. President Obama has recently appointed her to the Board of Trustees of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and she is also a Member of the Board of Overseers of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. She is on the Boards of Catholic Democrats of Massachusetts and the National Leadership Roundtable on Church Management.
In 1994, 2000, and 2006 Reggie-Kennedy played an active role in the re-election campaigns of Senator Kennedy. In connection with the 1994 campaign, she created a Massachusetts Women’s Council which served as a model for other campaigns around the country, and she remains active in her support of candidates in Massachusetts and around the country. She served a co-chair of Catholics for Obama-Biden during the 2008 Presidential Campaign.
Reggie-Kennedy is the co-founder of Common Sense about Kids and Guns, a non-profit, non-partisan organization that works to reduce gun deaths and injuries to children in the United States. From 1997-2007, she served as a Trustee of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, in Washington, DC. She is a past member of the Board of Stop Handgun Violence in Boston, Massachusetts and of the Advisory Committee of the Annual Day of National Concern about Young People and Gun Violence. She is also past member and officer of the Board of Trustees of the Maret School in Washington, DC.
Until 1997, she practiced law in the private sector with special emphasis on the federal and state regulation of domestic commercial banks and savings and loan institutions. Her practice also involved the negotiation of complex loan restructurings and the giving of general corporate and strategic planning advice. She received a BA, magna cum laude, from Newcomb College in 1976 where she was also elected to Phi Beta Kappa and several other honor societies. She received a JD, summa cum laude, from the Tulane Law School in 1979 where she was also an editor of the Tulane Law Review and was inducted into the Order of the Coif. From 1979-80, prior to entering private practice, she served as a law clerk for Judge Robert A. Sprecher of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, in Chicago. In 1998, she was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the Suffolk University Law School. In 2010, she was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Public Service degree from Northeastern University and Honorary Doctor of Laws degrees from Emmanuel College, Lesley University and UMass Boston. She was the 2010 principal commencement speaker at the College Park campus of the University of Maryland, at UMass Boston and at Harwich High School in Harwich, Massachusetts.