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Supporters Corner | Pat Kennedy

March 04, 2024
By Jonathan Winkler

Pat Kennedy


Pat is an active member at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Highland Park and finds her purpose by giving back to her community and to The Neighborhood Academy. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pat and her late husband lived all over the country and returned to Pittsburgh in 2002. No matter where they lived, they were always active in their faith community.

“My husband worked for Gulf Oil, and we lived north, south, east, west and eventually came back to Pittsburgh,” she said. “I first heard about The Neighborhood Academy when Rev. Tom Johnson spoke at Fox Chapel Episcopal Church. My husband joined a group of gentlemen who helped prepare meals when the school was in Garfield. When we transferred to St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, that’s when we really began getting involved,” said Pat.

For years, St. Michael’s of the Valley in Ligonier has stuffed and donated backpacks for TNA students as a back-to-school gesture. As the school began to grow larger and larger, the task of stuffing and delivering the backpacks became quite the task, and St. Michael’s reached out to St. Andrew’s for assistance.

“At the time, I was the head of outreach at St. Andrew’s, and we were happy to help,” said Pat. The backpacks are such a wonderful project, and we’ve been involved ever since!”

While at St. Andrew’s, Pat was on the vestry twice and was also the Sr. Warden, and her service to TNA did not stop at the annual backpack donation. Three or four times a year, she and the Outreach Committee re-stock TNA’s family essentials, items not covered by food stamps. She has also invited TNA leadership and alumni to update St. Andrew’s congregation during their ‘Minute for Ministry.’

“It’s important that our congregation gets a ‘Hello, Neighbor’ from some of the groups we support. I want TNA to be more than just a name of a school that they hear,” said Pat. “We make sure St. Andrew’s Outreach Committee take tours of TNA annually to see the beautiful academic building and meet the students,” said Pat.

To give back for all the support, TNA students rake leaves and do some minor landscaping on St. Andrew’s grounds. To keep her mind sharp, Pat takes classes through the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute hosted by the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University.

“After one of my classes, I asked the instructor if he was familiar with The Neighborhood Academy, since he taught at Pittsburgh Public Schools. He said to me, ‘There should be 30 Neighborhood Academies in Pittsburgh’… The work the school does, the students, the whole approach is so different from public schools. It’s beautiful.”