Karen Williams Seel was appointed to the Pinellas County Commission by Governor Jeb Bush in January 1999. She has since been reelected in 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012 and 2016. Prior to this, she served as a Clearwater City Commissioner from 1996 to 1999. Her father, the late Don Williams, served as a Clearwater City Commissioner from 1967 to 1975. Karen is proud to follow in a family tradition of public service.
A Clearwater, Florida native, Karen graduated from Clearwater High School in 1976 and has a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from the University of Florida, where she was selected Outstanding Female Graduate for Leadership in 1979. She holds an MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management. With a strong belief in volunteerism, Karen has served on many local Boards and has participated in numerous community projects and fundraisers, including the Arc of Tampa Bay (formerly UPARC) Omelette Committee for many years. Karen currently serves as a member of the Pinellas Education Foundation Board and Chairs Take Stock in Children.
In her official capacity, Karen serves as 2019 Chair of the Pinellas County Commission and therefore Chairs the Pinellas County Economic Development Council and the Tourist Development Council. She also serves on the Juvenile Welfare Board, the Health and Human Services Leadership Board, Forward Pinellas and the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transit Authority. In the past, she Chaired the U.S. 19 Task Force, the Pinellas Assembly, Pinellas by Design and the U.S. 19 Pedestrian Safety Task Force. She has been a leading force in obtaining funds for traffic and safety improvements on US 19 and throughout Pinellas County for over 20 years.
Karen is married to Ron Seel (for over 30 years) and has two adult sons and one beautiful granddaughter.