Kelly’s early experience in state politics showed her how the levers work. She researched bills, listened to affected parties and helped write legislation. She lobbied legislators and forged compromises. She sat in as the final deals were cut. She learned the importance of combining tenacity and realism to achieve results.
In the late 1980s, Kelly felt a call to ministry and attended four years of seminary. She and her husband then chose to make their home in Lexington, where she served as senior minister at the Unitarian Universalist Church from 1991 to 1998. Here, she led interfaith organizations designed to heal divisions among races, ethnic groups, and faith communities. She spoke out forcefully for women’s reproductive freedom, racial fairness, and gay/lesbian/bisexual/
For the past decade, Kelly has raised more than $10 million for progressive causes: as vice president for Starr King School for the Ministry, a liberal religious theological school; as an activist and board member for such non-profits as Kentucky Council for Community and Justice and the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning; and as a volunteer in the Steve Kay for Council and Barack Obama for President campaigns.
Since 1987, she has been married to Neil Chethik, executive director of the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning in downtown Lexington. They have a son, Evan.
Kelly and her family have lived in the 75th District since 1991.
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