Karen J. Hartnett

Free! 1 hour

23+ years of CHRO and senior executive human resources leadership experience within organizations with assets of $3.5B to $21B.


Karen J. Hartnett

Karen J. Hartnett has more than 23 years of C-suite consulting human resources experience for organizations with assets of $3.5 to $21 billion.

Hartnett delivers CEO advising, C-suite consulting, and senior executive coaching for top leaders, with particular focus on CEO, CHRO, CMO and General Counsel positions. She leverages her career in financial services to provide business advice in various aspects of senior management in a broad array of industries including energy, professional services, and manufacturing. Hartnett is especially skilled in bringing executive teams into strategic alignment, and has significant expertise in succession planning and C-level meeting facilitation. She has directed every discipline of human capital management during her 40-plus year career.

Since 2001, Hartnett has been Principal of KJH Consulting providing strategic human capital advice to CHROs and other senior executives. She worked with Guaranty Bank, a subsidiary company of Temple-Inland, Inc., from 2001 to 2008—first as its primary human resources consultant and then as its Chief Human Resource Officer. As CHRO, she guided Guaranty’s spin-off from Temple-Inland, Inc., and took part in ringing the bell at the New York Stock Exchange. From 1991 to 2001, Hartnett led the HR team at Bank United in Houston, through its IPO until acquisition by Washington Mutual. She headed HR for Equimark in Pittsburgh from 1989 to 1991. From 1983 to 1989, she launched her banking career in Dallas with Republic Bank and rose to CHRO for the Interfirst/Republic merged company, First Republic, which sold to NCNB (now Bank of America) in 1989. Her earliest corporate experiences were with Zale Corporation in Dallas (1980–1983) and Mobil Oil Corporation in New York City (1976-1980), and she served six years in the administration at Sweet Briar College (1970-1976).

Hartnett earned her B.A. in English Literature at Sweet Briar College in Virginia and completed additional studies at the University of Michigan and the University of Virginia in business and education. She is a long-standing member of the Houston Ballet Foundation’s Board of Trustees and a Lifetime Member of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. She has published articles in the American Banker, the industry’s daily newspaper, and in the ABA Banking Journal.