Karen Donnelly

Karen Donnelly




  • J.D., University of Missouri-Kansas City, 2010
  • B.A., English Literature, University of Kansas, 2002
  • B.S., Journalism, University of Kansas, 2002

Bar Admissions

  • U.S. District Court, District of Kansas
  • Kansas
  • Missouri


  • First Amendment
  • Nonprofit and Tax-Exempt Organizations
  • Regulatory and Compliance
  • State Attorney General Investigations


Donnelly is a partner in the Kansas City office. Her practice focuses on First Amendment litigation within the context of charitable and political speech. She represents nonprofit and for-profit clients within the nonprofit fundraising community in state attorney general investigations, Federal Trade Commission investigations, multi-state investigations and other complex litigation in federal and state courts. 

Donnelly counsels clients on the formation, structuring and qualification of tax-exempt organizations. She advises clients on nonprofit governance issues and matters involving compliance with state charitable solicitation and fundraising laws and regulations.

She has also worked in the areas of direct marketing and nonprofit fundraising in Washington, DC.

Publications / Speaking Engagements

Good Governance: Has the IRS Usurped the Business Judgment of Tax Exempt Organizations in the Name of Transparency and Accountability?, 79 UMKC L. Rev. 163, Fall 2010.


Donnelly volunteers as a cooperating attorney on the legal panel of the ACLU of Kansas. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, running and spending time with family.