Dr. Kennedy was born and raised in northeast Ohio. He began his research training in studying potential drug targets in HIV/ AIDS-defining fungal pathogens. After earning his Master’s degree, he pursued a Ph.D. in infectious disease at Mississippi State University in the lab of Dr. Justin A. Thornton. There, he studied the pathogenesis of pneumococcal pneumonia. He achieved his Ph.D. investigating the consequences of cell death delays in leukocytes in response to infection. After receiving his Ph.D., he began a post-doctoral appointment at Baylor College of Medicine in the lab of Dr. Katherine Y. King. He has been awarded two consecutive NIH training fellowships studying the predisposition of Dnmt3a mutation to negative outcomes from infection. Together with the TBRS community, he is investigating the role the innate cellular immune response plays in respiratory infections of TBRS.