Kelly is a respected and seasoned attorney with more than 17 years of courtroom experience including work in criminal law, domestic matters and real estate litigation. Kelly has a proven track record of protecting our children and families while passionately working to keep our community safe. Kelly has worked for the State of Georgia as both an Assistant District Attorney and an associate Special Assistant Attorney General. Currently, Kelly works for Gwinnett County as an attorney and Guardian Ad Litem for Juvenile Court. As such, Kelly serves by appointment of the Superior Court and Juvenile Court judges to determine the ultimate issues of fact in divorce and custody cases. Kelly has regularly been deemed an expert in domestic cases by the courts. Kelly has also been entrusted to represent the abused and neglected children of Gwinnett County. She is a voice for our voiceless children and is responsible for finding them permanence in safe and loving homes.
Kelly was born and raised in Gwinnett County and is a graduate of Brookwood High School. Kelly's mother, Carol Kautz, a retired school teacher and cheerleading coach from Lilburn Middle and SJN, and her father, Tom Kautz, who managed a local hardware store and coached basketball, instilled in Kelly the importance of a strong work ethic, dedication to community, integrity, justice and treating people with fairness and compassion.
Thanks to the influence of her parents, Kelly knew at a young age that she wanted to become an attorney and an advocate within her community. As a young adult, Kelly worked with the late Governor Zell Miller on tightening DUI laws in Georgia and was recognized as an Outstanding Georgia Citizen for her efforts.
After high school, Kelly became a Double Dawg at the University of Georgia. Kelly graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor's degree in Political Science and Criminal Justice and her Juris Doctorate Degree for law. Kelly was inducted as a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi and recognized in both Who’s Who Among American Colleges and Universities and Who’s Who Among Law Schools. Kelly continues to be a strong supporter of the University of Georgia. She is a member of the Alumni Association and was an inaugural member of the Executive Committee for Women of UGA where she chaired events such as Cookies and Cocoa with Hairy Dawg to raise scholarship funds. The University of Georgia Alumni Association has recognized Kelly as a 40 Under 40.
After law school Kelly was awarded a clerkship in the Northern Judicial Circuit. During her clerkship, Kelly gained invaluable experience serving as a staff attorney for three experienced Superior Court Judges (Judges Bailey, Tise and Hodges).
When her clerkship ended, Kelly began her professional career in public service by serving as an Assistant District Attorney prosecuting felony cases for Walton and Newton Counties. During her time as an ADA, Kelly gained a vast amount of courtroom experience by prosecuting hundreds of criminal cases including special victim cases such as child molestation and rape cases. Kelly argued cases and prevailed in cases to the Georgia Court of Appeals and the Georgia Supreme Court.
Kelly began her career in private practice with WNCW, one of the largest real estate law firms in the southeast, before she opened her own law office in Snellville in 2006. In the Kautz Law Firm, Kelly specialized in criminal defense work and family law matters, however, Kelly also represented individual and business clients in legal matters such as real estate, contracts, employment issues and civil litigation. Therefore, after having practiced law for almost 20 years, Kelly has extensive experience in each of the variety of cases that appear in Superior Court.
Kelly Kautz was elected the first female Mayor of Snellville in 2011. Prior to being elected
Mayor of Snellville, Kelly served as a Snellville City Councilmember for 5 years and briefly served on the Planning Commission. As the Mayor of Snellville, Kelly was non-partisan. She worked with both Snellville's elected Republican and Democrat leaders. As an elected official Kelly developed a reputation for being straight forward and for having the courage to stand-up for what is right for the community.
In addition to practicing law Kelly worked as an adjunct professor at Georgia Gwinnett College and Shorter University teaching graduate courses in judicial processes, political science, legal studies and ethics and leadership.
Kelly is respected by her peers and is active in the legal community. Kelly is the founder and currently serves as the president of the Juvenile Law Section of the Gwinnett County Bar. She was elected and served as a past president of the Gwinnett County Defense Bar. Kelly has been recognized as a Rising Star Super Lawyer. Kelly has participated in Leadership Gwinnett and is a member of the Gwinnett Association of Women Lawyers. Kelly has also served as a Mock Trial coach and a judge.
Kelly has demonstrated her commitment to our community by investing her time and skills in big and small ways. Kelly currently serves on the Board of Directors for STRAP, a youth mentoring program for at risk youth, and for LettumEat!, a non-profit that provides food services to the needy. She is an i9 Sports basketball coach and a room mom at St. Lawrence preschool. Kelly also serves as a judge for Miss Georgia preliminary pageants.
Kelly owns a home in the Summit Chase community with her husband, Robb and their son, Preston. Robb has his doctorate degree from the University of Georgia and is a high school teacher and wrestling coach. He is also a member of the local Masonic Lodge and a Shriner. Preston will start kindergarten in the Fall.