Jack "Rusty" O'Kelley III

Jack "Rusty" O'Kelley III




New York

Jack "Rusty" O'Kelley III

Jack “Rusty” O’Kelley III is a senior member of the firm’s Board & CEO Advisory Group, and is the Global Leader of the Board Consulting and Effectiveness Practice. His areas of expertise are board effectiveness and governance, CEO succession planning and activism defense (board performance and governance). Rusty has led numerous board consulting engagements, helping boards to improve their overall effectiveness, performance and culture, as well as helping to review governance and board composition in connection with proxy fight defense. He has also designed long-term CEO succession plans for Fortune 500 companies and large-scale family businesses. Rusty is based in New York.

Previous Experience

Rusty joined Russell Reynolds Associates from a search and leadership firm where he led the Leadership Consulting Practice for the Americas. Previously, he was with Katzenbach Partners (now PwC). Rusty began his career as a corporate lawyer at Sullivan & Cromwell.
Rusty has written or co-authored numerous white papers and articles including: “Looking Beyond the CEO,” “The Elegant Transition,” “Preparing for an Activist Before There is One,” and three “Global Trends in Corporate Governance” – one for each of 2016, 2017 and 2018, and published in the Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation.

Education & Affiliations

Rusty earned a BS in accounting, summa cum laude, from Hampton University, where he was valedictorian of his class, and a JD from Yale Law School. He has served as a director for Seventy-Fifth Avenue Investments and Track Chicago 1 Investments, as well as serving on the boards of Bennett College and the Yale Law School Fund.


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Jack "Rusty" O'Kelley III