Kelly’s father has had a profound impact on her career, and more specifically her decision to pursue a career in human resources.
As a young girl, Kelly admired the work that her father championed as a black executive, proactively supporting the development of black talent that came behind him, despite the difficulties he had experienced in his own journey to leadership.
“His drive and motivation were incredibly inspiring”, Kelly says. “I saw him work his way up the corporate ladder at a time when there were few minorities in senior-level roles at Fortune 500 companies. He was committed to doing what he could to pave the way for others.”
Kelly explains that her father’s career path, combined with a genuine love of helping others, inspired her to look into HR roles after graduating from college. She joined Mars Wrigley, the world’s largest gum manufacturer, and gained a breadth of knowledge as a HR business partner. Supporting employees in the corporate office as well as production facilities, Kelly even went on to establish Mars Wrigley’s first African American business resource group and inclusion lounge.
After 12 years at Mars Wrigley, an opportunity to lead HR for bp America’s Global Business Services business caught Kelly’s eye. She has since transitioned across various roles at bp, working as an HR leader in petrochemicals and supporting bp America’s mobility and convenience business.
As Vice President of People & Culture (P&C) Capability for bp, Kelly views her role as being responsible for developing, empowering, engaging and caring for the extraordinary P&C talent across the business. “It’s a role with immense possibilities,”
In her ten years at bp, Kelly has taken pride in leading initiatives that ensure employees feel empowered at work.
Empowerment is also central to the work that Kelly does to support the advancement of bp’s DE&I agenda. She is part of the recently launched LIfT program, an accelerated pathway to support black leaders, and a member of the BELT (Black Extended Leadership Team), focused on creating a connected and results-oriented culture in bp where black talent excels.
This is precisely what Kelly hopes to create for future generations; an environment where people feel comfortable being their authentic selves, at bp and beyond.
We are a global business and as such it is paramount to us that the differences we see in the world around us are reflected in our workplace
Our purpose is reimagining energy for people and our planet. We want to help the world reach net zero and improve people’s lives
We aim to be a very different kind of energy company by 2030 as we scale up investment in low carbon, focus our oil and gas production and make headway on reducing emissions