Paul V. Kelly is a Shareholder in the Boston office of Jackson Lewis P.C.
Mr. Kelly has been a practicing trial lawyer for over 30 years, with extensive experience in white collar criminal defense, internal investigations, complex civil litigation and crisis management. He is Chair of the firm’s White Collar & Government Enforcement practice group. A former sports industry executive, he is also Co-Chair of the firm’s Collegiate & Professional Sports Industry practice group.
Mr. Kelly has substantial trial experience in both state and federal courts. He was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts for 10 years (1987-1996) during which time he prosecuted a wide array of federal criminal violations, including racketeering, fraud, corruption, money laundering and murder. Upon leaving the Department of Justice, he focused his practice on defending companies, business executives and others being investigated or prosecuted for the alleged commission of criminal offenses. Included among the matters he handled successfully are workplace enforcement actions, bid-rigging and fraud charges brought against defense contractors, alleged securities fraud and other financial crimes by corporate executives, fraud offenses brought against health care providers, pharmaceutical companies, and their employees, and alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. While in private practice, Mr. Kelly also served as legal advisor to the Attorney General of Trinidad and Tobago and assisted in conducting investigations of suspected bribery and other corrupt activities within that country.
Mr. Kelly also has significant experience as a civil litigator. He defended an airline passenger screening company in the multi-year 9/11 litigation; successfully represented a municipality and several police officials in a civil rights action; successfully defended a prominent attorney charged with ethics violations; successfully argued the appeal of a class action lawsuit alleging violations of the state wiretap statute by a telecommunications company before the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts; and successfully represented professional athletes in civil, criminal and administrative proceedings.
In addition to his background as a trial attorney, Mr. Kelly has management and legal experience within collegiate and professional sports. He served as Executive Director of the National Hockey League Players Association for two years, representing the 740 players of the NHL. He understands collective bargaining, salary cap management, franchise acquisition and location, player discipline, health and safety, drug testing, equipment issues, and the grievance and arbitration process. Upon leaving the NHL, Mr. Kelly established and thereafter served as Executive Director of College Hockey, Inc., the recruiting and promotional arm of NCAA Division I men’s hockey. Mr. Kelly has substantial working knowledge of NCAA bylaws and regulations, enforcement proceedings, and the challenges faced by collegiate athletic programs in such areas as recruiting, regulatory compliance, conference alignment and student-athlete behavior.
Mr. Kelly is a graduate of Boston College (BA 1977, magna cum laude) and the University of Toledo, College of Law (JD 1980, cum laude). He is admitted to practice in Massachusetts and Ohio, and is a member of the bar of the First Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. He is a past or present member of the American Bar Association, Boston Bar Association, Sports Lawyers Association, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and International Association of Defense Counsel.
Mr. Kelly holds a preeminent AV rating from Martindale Hubbell. He has been listed in Woodward/White’s Best Lawyers in America, and was selected by his peers as one of the top 100 Super Lawyers in Massachusetts. He is a former Director of the Hockey Hall of Fame, and an active member of the International Council of USA Hockey.
Honors, Awards and Pro Bono Activity
- Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Massachusetts (1987-1996)
- Director’s Award for Superior Performance, U.S. Department of Justice (1992)
- Listed in Woodward/White’s The Best Lawyers in America
- Voted as top 100 Super Lawyers in Massachusetts
- Former Executive Director, National Hockey League Players’ Association
- Former Executive Director, College Hockey, Inc. (represented NCAA Division I men’s programs)
- Former Director, Hockey Hall of Fame
- Member, International Committee of USA Hockey
- Listed as among 50 most influential people in sport of hockey by The Hockey News (2007-2011)