Kelly Blair is a managing partner in the firm and has been a member of the Caldwell team for more than 40 years. She leads the global Consumer Practice and the Board and CEO Practice in Canada and is also a senior member of the global Financial Services and Private Equity practices. Kelly is one of the leading search consultants in North America with a vast network of strong relationships built over four decades of working closely with boards and governance leaders on CEO and board succession and transition, as well as recruiting transformational executives into the C suite of those clients. Her ability to assess and attract talent and understand what the business is looking for and needs is second to none.
A leader in the CEO and board recruitment space, Kelly has built an impressive career guiding the leadership and board transformation at many of the most recognized names in the consumer, financial services, insurance industries and many other organizations that span a broad segment of the Canadian and North American business communities.
In addition to recruiting board directors and C-level executives, she has significant experience placing hundreds of senior marketing, sales, finance, information technology, human resources, IT and operating executives for clients that span a broad segment of the Canadian and North American business communities.
Kelly is also involved with Caldwell’s Canada’s Outstanding CEO of the Year™ and Canada’s Top 40 Under 40™ programs, both of which keep the firm close to current and future leaders.
Kelly holds a Bachelor of Arts in physical education (kinesiology) and economics from The University of Western Ontario; and has completed The University of Western Ontario’s Executive Management Program at the Ivey School of Business.
More About Kelly
She is an active member of the 30% Club, a global campaign led by Chairs and CEOs taking action to increase gender diversity at board and executive-committee levels. She is a former director and member of the Nomination Committee for The University of Western Ontario, Alumni Association and a director of The Robarts Research Institute.
“Kelly is one of the leading search consultants in our country and having worked with her I understand why. She takes the time to really understand what you need and helps you to get clear on that too. She brings energy, passion, experience and hard work to the table. There is no one that she can’t reach. She is a delight to work with—makes it a fun process when often CEO Succession can be stressful for a Board.”
“Her towering strength is an uncanny ability to assess talent and understand what the business is looking for and needs. Kelly is one of the most senior and established Search Consultants in North America in Board and CEO recruitment—and builds teams from there”
“As the Chair of the CEO search committee Kelly was brilliant. Kelly’s reputation precedes her. We received very professional advice and great service. We were led and guided through the recruitment process well, challenged when we needed it, provided guidance as appropriate but also let us work through the process as a team. Most importantly Kelly provided us a great pool of candidates from all over the globe. You want Kelly leading your CEO search”
“I’ve worked with Kelly Blair and team for more than a decade, on many different searches. She has been key in bringing many great senior leaders to the company, including this search. She does a great job of really understanding what we are looking for. Some searches are harder than others, but she and her team have always been able to source candidates that fit the bill. Her network is incredible and everyone returns her call. She really does an excellent job engaging candidates in the process, the company, and the role.”
“You have been genuine throughout and your honesty was what allowed me to trust you. You were forthright in the pros and cons and I felt like you were looking out for my best interests. I would describe my experience with Caldwell as thoroughly positive: extremely professional, very supportive throughout the entire process – and after – in my first few months in Canada.”
“Kelly and her team have done several C-level searches for me over the last few years. I would not use anyone else to do this work. She has earned the place as our “Recruiter of Choice.” She is engaged, never quits, digs in hard to develop the right solution and wins where others have failed in the process. She never stops and never gives up. She is bright and can learn any business and tell the story with passion. Candidates love her and her reputation and reach is second to none—I think Kelly knows everyone in North America and beyond.”