Howard G. Carpenter Jr.

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Howard G. Carpenter Jr. NiskayunaHoward G. Carpenter Jr., Colonel USAF Ret., of Niskayuna, New York, died December 24 of complications from idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. He was born August 17, 1939, in Buffalo, New York, the son of Howard G. Carpenter and Beatrice Garvey Carpenter. He grew up in the suburban Township of Tonawanda and graduated from Kenmore Senior High School in 1957. He first came to Schenectady to attend Union College, receiving a bachelor of arts degree in May 1961. Howard was a cum laude graduate of Albany Law School in June 1967, where he was a member of the Justinian Legal Honor Society and the managing editor of the Albany Law Review. He spent the remainder of his life as a practicing attorney, in varied and challenging positions. At the time of his death, he was employed as the First Deputy County Attorney by Schenectady County. Howard began his career as an associate then a principal in the firm of Higgins, Roberts, Beyerl and Coan, P.C. of Schenectady, New York. As a member of that firm, he assisted the then-Schenectady Savings Bank in its conversion from a state-chartered mutual savings bank to a federal bank, and in the formation by merger of Northeast Savings, F.A. In December 1982, Howard left private practice when he was elected senior vice president and general counsel of Northeast Savings. During his career at Northeast Savings, he was promoted to senior executive vice president, named corporate secretary and elected to its Board of Directors. In addition to his role as head of the legal department, he was also the senior officer responsible for human resources, risk management and marketing. During his tenure as general counsel, Northeast Savings completed its initial public offering as a stock institution and six subsequent public offerings of its securities. He loved the association with Wall St. while working on the securities offerings, portraying himself as just a country lawyer from upstate New York when offering his comments and recommendations to securities counsel for other parties. Shortly before the sale of Northeast Savings to Shawmut Bank Corporation, he returned to the Schenectady area. In 1995, with Cristine Cioffi, he founded the law firm of Carpenter & Cioffi (now Cioffi, Slezak, Wildgrube) where he remained a principal until 2005. Howard is a past president of the Hartford, Conn. chapter of the American Society of Corporate Secretaries and a past director of the Hartford chapter of the American Corporate Counsel Association. He was a member of the board of trustees of WMHT Educational Telecommunications and was president of the Schenectady Symphony Orchestra Association. From 1993 to 1996 he was the legal commentator for WNYT Channel 13 AM News in Albany. Howard's biography was included in Who's Who in America in the 1989 to 1993 editions. He was a longtime member of the Mohawk Club and the Mohawk Golf Club. Upon graduation from Union College, Howard was commissioned a second lieutenant in the United States Air Force, beginning a 30-year military career. He spent three years on active duty in the USAF as a special investigations officer and, upon separation from the Air Force, joined the 109th Military Airlift Wing of the New York Air National Guard based at Schenectady County airport. Upon graduation from law school, he became staff judge advocate for the 109th. In 1981, he was transferred to the headquarters of the NY Air National Guard where he held the position of state staff judge advocate. He was a graduate of the USAF Squadron Officers' School, Air Command and Staff College, and the National Security Management Course. He served as a member of the Air Force Judge Advocate General's advisory council from 1982 until his retirement in 1991. During his career, he was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal with two bronze oak leaf clusters, the Air Force Commendation Medal and the National Defense Service Medal. He was also awarded the Military Service Medal by the State of New York. At his retirement, Carpenter was advanced to the grade of Brigadier General in the New York Militia. From the time as a nine year-old he campaigned door-to-door for Pres. Harry S. Truman, he was active in the Democratic Party. He was most recently a Niskayuna Democratic Committeeman. In 1975, Howard was elected to the Schenectady City Council with Karen Johnson and Joseph Notar. Their election gave the Democrats majority control of the council, which has not been relinquished since. Howard was named majority leader of the council in 1980. He resigned in 1982, when he joined Northeast Savings. In 2013, Mayor Gary R. McCarthy conferred upon him the honorary title of Schenectady patroon in recognition of his lifetime of contributions to the city. Active in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon), he was called to serve in many positions in the church. His faith, and the kindness of many, sustained him and gave him strength in this struggle with his illness and its eventual outcome. Howard enjoyed spring, summer and fall at his second home on Jenny Lake in Corinth, NY, for many years puttering around and in the last years quietly enjoying the peace and atmosphere of the place and the company of his children and grandchildren who love it as much as he did. He is survived by his loving wife of 17 years, Diana Cross Carpenter; and by five children, Howard G. Carpenter, III (Lynne) of W. Hartford, CT, Jennifer Lee Siedman (Stuart) of Wellesley, MA, Abigail G. Markowski (James) of Whitman, MA, Timothy W. Carpenter (Denise) of Brockton, MA, and Alexander G. Carpenter, a junior at Niskayuna High School. He is also survived by his brother, Craig Carpenter (Jacqueline) of Cape Coral, FL; his wife's son, Christian E. Arsenault of Salt Lake City, and Christian's daughter, Nile Naomi. He is also survived by his beloved grandchildren, Andrew, Nicholas and William Carpenter, Noah, Benjamin and Isabelle Siedman, Emma, Brady and Sophie Markowski, and Jackson and Lily Carpenter; and nieces and nephews. Relatives and friends are invited to attend the funeral service which will be conducted Monday morning at 10:30 at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 52 Blue Barns Road, Rexford. Calling hours will be Sunday afternoon from 4 until 6 at the church. Burial will be at Saratoga National Cemetery, Schuylerville. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Howard's name to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Perpetual Education Fund, to the Schenectady Symphony Orchestra or to WMHT Educational Telecommunications.

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Gleason Funeral Home
730 Union St
Schenectady, NY 12305
(518) 374-1134
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Published in The Daily Gazette Co. from Dec. 27 to Dec. 28, 2013
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