Kelly Tompkins has more than 30 years of public company experience as a C-suite executive, investor relations and corporate communications strategist, legal advisor, and collaborative leader in global industrial companies. He has played a significant role in turnaround, rebuilding and restructuring of public companies, board leadership and management teams.
His experience includes steering the turnaround of a public company after an activist-driven proxy contest that resulted in ousting a CEO, overhaul of the Board and replacement of several senior executives; co-leading, with new CEO, a strategic, financial and operational reset of a company; developing and implementing multi-disciplined legal, public and government affairs strategies; managing a Chinese joint venture; leading acquisition and integration programs; leading the investor relations function at two large public companies (Cleveland Cliffs and RPM International); reorganizing the breadth and scope of legal, environment, government and sustainability functions to align with business strategy; managing significant litigation matters with major IR/PR implications; and completing debt reduction and asset disposition transactions.
Kelly joined Dix & Eaton in 2018. As a Senior Advisor, Kelly provides C-suite counsel to board chairs, CEOs, CFOs and other corporate officers on matters relating to governance, investor relations, transactions, enterprise risk management, sustainability, capital markets, finance, government and public affairs, and corporate communications. In addition to his role at Dix & Eaton, Kelly is a Leader-in-Residence at the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, and serves as Vice Chair of its Board of Visitors.
Prior to joining Dix & Eaton, Kelly was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. (NYSE: CLF), the largest iron ore mining company in the U.S. His other C-suite positions while at Cliffs since 2010 included serving as Chief Financial Officer; Executive Vice President, Business Development; Executive Vice President, External Affairs & President, Global Commercial; Chief Administrative Officer; Executive Vice President, Legal, Government Affairs and Sustainability; and President, Cliffs China.
From 1996 to 2010, Kelly was a C-suite executive at global coatings, sealants and building materials manufacturer RPM International Inc. (NYSE: RPM), having served as Chief Financial Officer; Chief Administrative Officer; Senior Vice President and General Counsel; Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary; and Assistant General Counsel.
Early in his career, Kelly co-founded an independent IR consulting firm. Before that, he worked for Reliance Electric, as Product Marketing Manager, Director of Investor & Public Relations, Senior Corporate Counsel and Director of Corporate Development. While at Reliance, Kelly participated in a management-led leveraged buyout, an initial public offering, and was extensively involved in the sale of Reliance to Rockwell Automation (NYSE: ROK), including serving on the post-sale integration team. Kelly also worked for Exxon Corporation as a Trial Attorney in its Houston-based law department.
Kelly holds a bachelor’s degree from Mercyhurst University in Erie, and a J.D. from Cleveland-Marshall College of Law. His community leadership roles include serving as a Trustee at Mercyhurst; Chair of the Advisory Council of the Baldwin Wallace University Center for Innovation & Growth; and Co-Chair of the United Way’s Humanitarian Society.
- Investor relations
- Corporate communications
- Corporate governance
- Enterprise risk management
- Capital markets
- Government and public affairs