Introducing: Kevin Berry
I am running for Town Board because the residents of Penfield deserve options when choosing their leaders. They deserve a responsive government that looks to the future and represents the interests of all residents. The Town government must listen to its constituents, and utilize their skills and talents when offered and needed. One party government in Penfield is a model that has lacked enthusiasm, ideas, and collaboration.
We need to envision a better Penfield. Of course, keeping all of the attributes of Penfield that we hold dear, but as a community, protecting the environment and preparing for the future. We need to be proactive, innovative and responsible.
I grew up in the North Country, the youngest of five children. During my high school years, both of my parents died and this defined the course of my life. On my own before I was 18 years old, I learned the importance, and dignity, of self-sufficiency. I earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from SUNY Cortland, and in 1989, was hired by Heritage Christian Services, working at their Penfield residence on Five Mile Line Road. I worked my way through management and into administration, eventually overseeing thirteen residences, some of which were in Penfield. I went on to earn a Master’s Degree in Communication from SUNY Brockport.
Due to the events of my high school years, I wanted to adopt children from the foster care system. As a single man, I adopted two sons; both of whom are now adults. I have a seven-year-old granddaughter who is the light of my life.
From 2006 to 2011, we lived in Phoenix, AZ where I managed a large ‘Career One Stop’ funded by the US Department of Labor. Workers came to the center looking for jobs, and businesses came looking for employees. I developed a specialization for helping people with employment challenges to obtain employment. Among these were people with disabilities, and persons who were formally involved with the criminal justice system. I believe that everyone can, and should, contribute to society in their own unique way.
An obstacle I recently overcame was the loss of more than 200 pounds. This life-changing accomplishment demonstrates what people can achieve under the right circumstances. I have been involved in several LGBTQ+ organizations and causes in the Rochester area, and am a former President of the Greater Rochester LGBTQ+ Political Caucus.