Kelly H. Carnes
The Honorable Kelly H. Carnes
President and Chief Executive Officer, TechVision21
Kelly Carnes is an entrepreneur, and nationally recognized technology policy expert and thought leader. She has served the high tech industry for over 20 years, holding leadership positions in technology business, law and government.
She is President and CEO of TechVision21, a Washington, DC-based technology strategy firm. TechVision21 leverages technology, business and government expertise to help companies: pinpoint and secure research and technology funding; forge critical alliances with business and government leaders; and promote and protect their interests in Washington. TechVision21 clients include global companies, leading U.S. research universities, government, and science and technology non-profit organizations.
Before founding TechVision21, Ms. Carnes served eight years at the highest levels of the U.S. government, working first as an aide to then First Lady Hillary Clinton, and later, as a senior technology policy advisor to four Secretaries of Commerce. Most recently, Ms. Carnes served four years as Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Technology Policy. As a Presidential appointee, confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Ms. Carnes represented the Administration before Congress, and was a liaison to, and advocate for, the technology business community. Ms. Carnes also represented the United States in negotiations with foreign governments, and in multi-lateral fora, including the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Ms. Carnes also provided strategic direction and management oversight for a large Federal agency; spearheaded sophisticated, highly-leveraged public-private partnerships to promote technological innovation; and led numerous Presidential and Cabinet-level technology initiatives. Private sector partners—including Warner Brothers, Scientific American, the National Association of Manufacturers, and DeVry University—invested $50+ for every Federal dollar invested in these ventures.
Ms. Carnes served as a key point person on numerous high profile issues affecting technology businesses, including regulation of E-commerce, H-1(b) visas, the R&D tax credit, securities litigation reform, financial accounting standards, and the high tech work force shortage. She also helped lead the Administration’s efforts to increase the representation of women and minorities in the nation’s technology work force.
Ms. Carnes directed several Presidential-level technology programs and initiatives, including the National Medal of Technology, America’s highest award for technological innovation. She also created GetTech, an award winning national public awareness and information campaign to encourage teens to pursue technology careers. GetTech features celebrity endorsements, radio and television public service announcements, and an interactive web site. GetTech ads have been broadcast more than 45,000 times, and have reached students in 14,000 public middle schools.
In 2021, Ms. Carnes was selected as a top woman business leader by the Corporate Magazine and joined the Washington Business Journal’s Leadership Trust. Her article on Federal R&D funding was recently published in the WBJ, and she published an article on renewable energy in the Economist.
Ms. Carnes is known as a dynamic speaker and forceful advocate for industry on technology and competitiveness issues. She is a frequent keynote speaker at technology and business conferences around the nation, and has been widely quoted in the media, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, CNN.com, Business Week.com, Information Week, CIO Magazine and The National Journal. She has been a featured guest on National Public Radio’s Talk of the Nation, and appeared on television and radio broadcasts nationwide.
Ms. Carnes has served on numerous Boards and Commissions, including the Comptroller General’s Advisory Board (Government Accountability Office), the Senior Advisory Group for the Director of National Intelligence, a National Governors’ Association Commission on Technology and Adult Education, and the Steering Committee for the Commission on the Advancement of Women and Minorities in Science, Engineering and Technology (the “Morella Commission”). Ms. Carnes also has served as an advisor to the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and BEST: Building Engineering and Science Talent. In 2000, Ms. Carnes was selected by the Center for the Study of the Presidency to join an elite group of experts making recommendations to President Bush on improving the federal government’s ability to develop technology and competitiveness policy.
Ms. Carnes previously enjoyed a highly successful technology business career. As an attorney at a top national law firm, Ms. Carnes structured and negotiated more than $1 billion in technology business transactions. These included joint ventures and strategic alliances, venture capital transactions, technology development, licensing and marketing agreements, systems integration projects, and large-scale computer outsourcing transactions.
Ms. Carnes graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with a Bachelor of Arts degree. She also graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University Law School, where she served as Topics Editor for the Georgetown Law Journal.