Vanessa Williams is a loyal leader, steadfast in her beliefs, oath as an attorney, and commitment to colleagues. As senior vice president and general counsel for Kelly®, a global leader in providing strategic workforce solutions and connecting talented people to great companies, she oversees the legal and corporate security teams.
Vanessa joined Kelly in 2020 with 24 years of senior legal experience at companies in the data science and information industries. She manages regulatory and legal compliance for Kelly, directs strategic legal initiatives, and provides senior management with actionable counsel. Vanessa also oversees the global legal team and manages outside counsel relationships.
With extensive experience in commercial transactions, litigation management, data privacy, international law, and contract management, Vanessa offers counsel grounded in the rule of law and nurtured with practicality and innovation. She leads her teams with integrity, respect and honesty, and is passionate about giving back to others and within her community.
Prior to joining Kelly, Vanessa served as senior vice president in legal, risk and compliance for IHS Markit, a London-based global information provider. She is a former editor-in-chief of the American Bar Association journal The Brief, has authored articles for the Michigan Bar Journal, and is a contributing author to Michigan Insurance Law and Practice.
Vanessa is a fellow of the American Bar Foundation and the State Bar of Michigan Foundation, former chair of the State Bar of Michigan Representative Assembly, and past president of the Association of Defense Trial Counsel. She currently serves as an independent director on the board of Horizon Bank. Vanessa is recipient of the Crain’s General & In-house Counsel Award for large private companies. In 2021, she was named to the EMpower Ethnic Minority Executives list, initiated by diversity and inclusion membership organization Involve.
A graduate of William and Mary Law School, Vanessa earned her MBA, with a focus in international business, from Wayne State University and a bachelor’s in communication from the University of Alabama. She is a huge Alabama football fan and enjoys exercising, reading, and traveling with her family.