Karen J. Mathis
Associate Executive Director


Karen J. Mathis joined the University of Denver in August 2012. She is the Associate Executive Director of IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System. In this role she serves as the Chief Operating Officer of IAALS, overseeing development efforts for IAALS in conjunction with a Senior Director of Fund Development and the IAALS staff.

Prior to joining the University of Denver, Karen served as President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, a $300 million per year enterprise. She has also served as President of the American Bar Association, the nation’s largest voluntary professional association, and as the Executive Director of the CEELI Institute in Prague, Czech Republic. There she raised funds internationally for the post-doctorate education of judges, prosecutors, and civil society advocates in the areas of human rights, judging in a market society, and human rights.

She is a graduate of the University of Denver and the University of Colorado School of Law. She is delighted to be back in Denver, CO, and particularly excited to return to her alma mater – the University of Denver. She is humbled to be the recipient of the 2013 Founders Day Community Service Award.

Ascend — The Campaign for the University of Denver