Kimberly Spell is an internationally-recognized communications professional, a storyteller and trusted adviser to CEOs, Corporate Boards, and not-for-profit organizations, who has worked at the highest level of U.S. presidential politics. She is a crisis and reputation management specialist and has worked at the intersection of communications, public relations, government, corporate advocacy and politics throughout her 25-year career.
Kimberly served for ten years as the Chief Communications Officer for Mike Bloomberg’s New York City’s marketing and tourism arm, NYC & Company. There, working closely with the Bloomberg Administration, she was the architect of a public affairs and press strategy for the City’s reputation and Brand building that included 18 press offices around the world that Kimberly led along with a team of professionals in NYC headquarters. In addition, to maintaining a 24/7 watch on NYC’s reputation, she led the communications strategy for publicizing iconic locations, big events, global advertising, marketing programs and creating new communications-driven vehicles to increase visitation to historic highs for the five boroughs of NYC.
Kimberly also served as Executive Vice President at the Partnership for New York City, specifically recruited by the CEO for the role. There, Kimberly oversaw all communications, content, marketing and the small business initiatives. She also was a spokesperson on behalf of New York’s top employers on complex policy issues while executing strategic communications campaigns for the Partnership’s Fund’s programs; including FinTech, NY Fashion Tech and the NY Health Accelerator.
Before 9/11, Kimberly moved to New York City from Washington, D.C. and opened her own Manhattan- based strategic crisis communications firm with a specific focus on the environment, healthcare and the arts in the post-9/11 business climate. Clients ranged from law firms to environmental organizations including: Patton Boggs, Edelman Public Relations and Robert Kennedy Jr’s Riverkeeper.
Before she moved to New York, Kimberly worked at the highest levels of American government and politics. Her experience includes: Assistant Press Secretary for Governor Jim Hunt, Press Secretary for U.S. Representative David Price and Communications Director for John Edwards and his successful race for the U.S. Senate. In addition, Kimberly has served as a senior advisor and spokeswoman for three US Presidential candidates. She served as New Hampshire Press Secretary for Senator John Kerry, National Press Secretary and Senior Advisor to General Wesley Clark for President and Kimberly served as Deputy Communications Director for Vice President Al Gore’s bid in 2000, the closest election in U.S. history.
For Vice President Gore’s campaign, Kimberly was a national on-the-record spokesperson for the Vice President during his presidential campaign, on-site during both the DNC and RNC conventions and the U.S. Presidential debates. She developed a highly successful rapid response system to use with opponent’s traveling press corps that became so effective the opponent attempted to replicate the strategy. Kimberly expanded message and audience reach through non-traditional vehicles including late night shows like Saturday Night Live. She built relationships with the leading national and international political reporters, editors and producers.
In addition to her political crisis experience, Kimberly also oversaw all communications for a $3 billion publicly-traded healthcare company with 55,000 employees and 500 nursing homes and hospitals nationwide – Mariner Post Acute Network. Kimberly served as Vice President of Corporate
Communications and was the lead, focused on crisis response to lawsuit-generated media inquiries, and was integral to the team who passed legislation through Congress to increase industry funding.
Kimberly began her career in journalism as a local newspaper reporter, radio news anchor and television assignment editor for the ABC affiliate in Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina. She graduated from Meredith College in Raleigh with a BA in Communications and Political Studies and she spent a semester at American University studying Journalism and interning with Ted Koppel at ABC News Nightline.
After 15 years in Manhattan, Kimberly now lives with her husband and daughter in Westchester County, New York .
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