Keeping track of everything is key when leading many administrative functions for a department, which Karen Buckley, Institutional Coordinator, has mastered to support the daily activities of Clearstead’s Institutional Consulting group and earn her the recognition as the person who keeps their functions “in line.”

Putting all the meeting details together and getting the consultants from Point A to Point B is like a complicated puzzle, but Buckley has a master spreadsheet, lists to keep track of logistics, and plenty of post-it notes to keep herself and the team organized.

These organizational skills also play a critical role when a new or challenging issue appears – like getting the department’s lead to a client meeting on a single-engine prop airplane or troubleshooting express delivery mishaps when shipping final copies of new business proposals on a tight deadline.

“Expect the unexpected” Buckley said, “You never know what new project or task is going to come up that requires problem-solving.”

As Institutional Coordinator, Buckley is responsible for scheduling client meetings for the Institutional Consulting Group, booking travel arrangements, and ensuring timely shipment of client reports and presentations. She has been with the firm for over five years and is also responsible for other key initiatives within the group, including administrative support for their Request for Proposal (RFP) response process and departmental data integrity within the firm’s CRM system.

She enjoys working with the Institutional Consulting team and ensuring they have everything they need to meet with their clients. “I love the people I work with and the guys I support,” Buckley said.

To recognize her efforts in this role, she was selected as EmpowHER’s 2022 Woman of the Year. This is the seventh year that EmpowHER, Clearstead’s women’s initiative, has recognized an accomplished woman in a leadership role at the firm.

Buckley has over 25 years of administrative experience and has an eye for graphic design, which she applies to formatting some of the firm’s newsletters and improving client meeting materials.

Outside of work, Buckley even spends some of her free time solving things, but in the form of jigsaw puzzles instead. She has completed numerous puzzles, including the world’s largest (totaling 12,000 pieces!) and uses her organizational skills to piece them together. “I like to lay out all the pieces, then sort them by shape and then color. I even have names for them,” she said.

Beyond her puzzles, she enjoys spending time with her family, her husband, and their two dogs, Jasmine and Porter. She also likes getting together with her son and daughter-in-law who live in Maryland.

Buckley’s value of relationships also extends to Clearstead and her colleagues. “They are a great group of people to work with,” Buckley said, “We feel like a family.”

This familial dynamic, combined with her organizational skills, is what helps Buckley and the Institutional Consulting team juggle all their priorities and be certain no one will “forget a tie.”


At Clearstead, we create integrated, prudent, and custom strategies that bring clarity to you or your organization’s financial future.

Clearstead is an independent financial advisory firm serving wealthy families and leading institutions across the country. As a fiduciary, it provides wealth management services and investment consulting to help clients meet their financial objectives, achieve their aspirations, and build stronger futures.




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