Retiree News

Death of Curtis Kennedy

A very sad Announcement, the death of Curtis Kennedy.

December 6, 1956 – August 23, 2021

Curtis Kennedy served as the attorney for many Mountain Bell, U S West, Qwest and CenturyLink retirees, both as individuals and as groups.  He also served as attorney for the Retiree Association, commonly known as AUSWR (Association of U S West Retirees), a 14-state Regional organization, which folded at the end of 2013.

He first won the MIPP/SIPP suit in the late 1980s and early 1990s, primarily affecting managers who had stepped down from their management positions to avail themselves of a non-management early retirement offer, only to have a more lucrative offering be presented a short time later. Curtis was able to win their rights to the more lucrative program.

He then moved on to represent management retirees in the Phelps lawsuit, which guaranteed those who took the February 1990 5+5 early retirement offering their health care coverage for life. This same provision was subsequently extended in 1992 to the non-management ERO retirees.

Also in an early 1990s suit, Embree, Hull v. U S West, Curtis was part of the legal negotiating team which brought additional Term of Employment (TOE) service credit to any and all women in each of the operating companies that comprised U S West, who had taken maternity leave/s during the course of their employment.  This made many women advance in seniority or become retirement eligible earlier than they would have without the settlement.

For those retirees who lived outside of the telephone serving areas of U S West, the company had revoked the retiree reimbursement for telephone service provided by an independent company. Curtis negotiated a one-time settlement in the Colvin case for all affected retirees.

Additionally, Curtis assisted throughout the process of the creation of the National Retiree Legislative Network (NRLN) in Washington D.C. It established a unified voice for the pension and benefit concerns of retirees from major US Corporations. In addition to representing U S West and its successor corporations’ retirees, he represented the retirees of other major Corporations, as well.

Curtis reviewed all of the pertinent retiree documents issued by U S West and its successor corporations, so that retirees could always be cognizant of their benefits and the financial health and status of the plans under which their benefits operated, including their financial viability.

For all of this service, we will be infinitely grateful to Curtis.

Rest in peace dear friend.

Categories: Retiree News

1 reply »

  1. I’m having a nostalgic day, and happened on to the obituary for Curtis. I interacted with him on many occasions as Region vice president of pioneers and as a board member for the US West retiree Association. Curtis was a good man and most certainly a capable attorney. His efforts led the way to many successful decisions that benefited retirees of the telephone industry. RIP Curtis.
    I did not know of your personal life in anyway and it’s an inspiring story.

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