By:Kelly Brough Issue: Collaborative Leadership Section: Advisory Board
President, Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce
Contact Kelly Brough
1445 Market St #400
Denver, CO 80202-1790
Kelly Brough is the President and CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber represents more than 3,000 businesses with 300,000 employees in Colorado. At the Chamber, Brough is responsible for connecting and building the business community across Colorado, acting as conduit between the business community and the public sector, educating public officials about how to build a strong economy for Coloradans.
Prior to joining the Chamber in 2009, Brough served as Chief of Staff for the City of Denver and Mayor John Hickenlooper overseeing a general fund of $857 million. She also served as Deputy Chief of Staff and Director of the Denver Office of Accountability and Reform. In this role, Brough’s key responsibilities were to implement the 3-1-1 customer service system – which allows residents and businesses to reach a live person who can answer their questions or route them inside the city organization for assistance. This project has resulted in the reduction of non-emergency calls to 9-1-1 and has provided assistance and answers to more than 460,000 callers every year since its inception.
Further, Brough was tasked with creating an organizational culture which embraced performance management and continuous improvement. She continues to cultivate such an environment today at the Denver Metro Chamber.
Brough was the first female Director of Human Resources for the City of Denver. She successfully moved the human resource department from an authoritarian culture to one based on service delivery and focused on outcomes. During her two years in this role, she led significant reforms including moving the city to a full pay for performance system and establishing the city’s first bonus plan program.
Brough also directed an internationally recognized leadership program at the University of Colorado at Denver—the Rocky Mountain Program. She served as a consultant to many local governments facilitating decisions, managing large public processes and comprehensive planning efforts, mediating disputes, and providing strategies to build stronger public/private partnerships. This work took her to Hungary (working with 50 local mayors) and allowed her to work with a number of local governments throughout Colorado and the West.
Her travels have continued at the Denver Metro Chamber, taking her to Canada, Dubai, Japan, and Turkey as an ambassador of Colorado business.
A Montana native, Brough earned a Master’s of Business Administration degree from the University of Colorado at Denver in 1989 and a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Sociology, Criminal Justice from Montana State University in 1986. She currently serves on the Metro Denver Sports Commission, the Denver Metro Chamber Leadership Foundation, VisitDenver, the Denver Public Schools Foundation Board, and as a member of the Women’s Forum and The Chamber 100 with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
She was recently named one of Denver’s most influential people by 5280 magazine. Brough has attended a number of leadership programs including the JFK School of Government’s program at Harvard for state and local public officials. She was also named an American Marshall Memorial Fellow in 2001.
In her spare time, Brough is an avid cyclist. She also can be found cheering on her two daughters at soccer games and debate tournaments.