Kelly, Spencer Karen

Karen Spencer Kelly, Esq.

Senior Advisor

Background & Experience

Karen Spencer Kelly is the Principal of KESK Consulting, LLC, a firm that specializes in the subject of diversity. KESK Consulting provides diversity assessment services; provides “Diversity and Inclusion 3.0” training for non-profit, government and corporate clients; counsels and advises private clients with diversity concerns in crisis/conflict situations; and produces Continuing Legal Education courses in diversity, inclusion and equity.

For over twenty years Karen ran her own firm, Kelly, Monaco and Naples, LLP, where she concentrated her practice in civil litigation defense at the trial level. On the appellate level, she drafted briefs for state and federal courts and argued orally before the Commonwealth, Superior and Supreme Courts of Pennsylvania. Additionally, Karen developed a municipal finance practice, serving as Co-Bond Counsel, Underwriters’ Counsel and Co-Special Disclosure Counsel in bond issuances involving the City of Philadelphia and its agencies.

In 2009, Karen was appointed by Pennsylvania Treasurer, Robert M. McCord, to be Chief Counsel and Deputy State Treasurer of the Pennsylvania Treasury Department. She served as head attorney and counselor for the Treasury Department, advising the Treasurer, Chief of Staff and Senior Staff on all legal matters. In addition, she served as

Senior Advisor to the Treasurer on policy and administrative issues, as well as final editor of all written materials generated by the Executive Office. She also managed the Office of Chief Counsel, which provided legal representation and support for all Treasury Department Bureaus.

Karen is a graduate of Harvard College and the Villanova University School of Law.

A proponent of education, she has devoted the majority of her volunteer time to supporting educational institutions. She served on at least one alumni committee for Harvard each year since her graduation in 1980.  This service culminated in her being elected the first female African-American President of the world-wide Harvard Alumni Association in 2001.

Areas of Expertise

  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Training
  • Counseling
  • Conflict Resolution