The regular sessions of the Rensselaer County Legislature are held on the second Tuesday of each month at 6:00 p.m. in:

Legislative Chambers, Third Floor
Majority Office
Rensselaer County Government Center
1600 7th Avenue
Troy, New York 12180

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James J. Connell, Jr. July 2021 Honor A Deceased Veteran

July 12, 2021 @ 8:30 am - 9:00 am


James “Jim” Joseph Connell Jr. was born on October 28, 1951 in Albany, New York to the late James Joseph Connell Sr. and Alice Merhige Connell. He was the brother of Deborah Connell Renfrew, Jean Connell Seney, Michael Patrick Connell Sr. and the late Amelia.

Jim attended Columbia High School, where he graduated with the class of 1971 with a Regents Diploma. After graduating from high school, he went on to attend SUNY at Morrisvile, where he graduated with the class of 1974 with a degree in journalism and photography, which were his passions.

Jim enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on October 3, 1971, and served as a rifleman until October 3, 1977. He later joined the New York Army National Guard in 1981, where he was a photo journalist. Jim retired from the New York Army National Guard on November 1, 2011 with the rank of Staff Sergeant. He received at least 6 coins for exemplary service from both the Marine Corps and the New York Army National Guard.

On April 27, 1974, Jim married his wife, Gail Harwood Connell in Rensselaer, New York at the First United Methodist Church. He is the beloved father of Christopher, Dena, Michelle and James IV, and the beloved grandfather of Karlina, Cheyenne, Damian, Savannah, Breanna, Angelina, Alyssa, Kiley, Olivia. Logan, Abigail, and Casey whom he loved dearly.

Throughout the years, Jim worked as a freelance photojournalist for many capital district newspapers, which included the Glens Falls Post-Star and the Amsterdam Recorder. During the mid- 1980’s, he was the managing editor and monthly publisher for the Albany-Colonie Yankees Double-A affiliate. During Jim’ semi-retirement years, he was a school bus driver for the city of Rensselaer for more than 3 years, and was a 3rd base usher for the Philadelphia Phillies at their spring training site in Clearwater, Florida.

Jim was a proud historian and author of “A Lonely Battle Stance” regarding the Civil War. He was a member of the 125th New York Volunteer Infantry and participated in reenactments of the Civil War. Jim enjoyed watching baseball games with his family as an avid NY Yankees fan, coaching little league and softball for his children and grandchildren, collecting baseball cards and memorabilia dating back to the 1930’s, gardening, his koi fish pond, was a classic car enthusiast and was an eclectic artist.

Sadly, on July 23, 2019 Jim passed away.


July 12, 2021
8:30 am - 9:00 am
Event Category:

Special sessions may also be convened at the request of the Chairman.

The agenda for a regular session is available on the Thursday preceding the meeting. Members of the public have the opportunity to speak on issues contained in the agenda for one-half hour prior to the opening of the meeting.

We also have a Public Forum night; this is a great opportunity for the Public to make comments to the full Legislative Body. It is held on the Wednesday of the week preceding our regular monthly meeting in Chambers beginning at 6:00 p.m.

At the request of local interpreters, if an interpreter is needed at any meeting in the Legislature they require 2 weeks advance notice. Thank you for your cooperation.