Tampa Bay Business Women Awards 2023: Kelly McKnight-Goelz

McKnight-Goelz has held senior executive positions for both public and private, organizations in the medical device, health/wellness, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and consumer packaged goods industries.

Until December 2015, she was the chief executive officer in Ascension and a corporate officer for Unilens Corp. USA, a Tampa-based public medical device organization that was acquired.

McKnight-Goelz is a member of the CEO Council of Tampa Bay, sits on the board of the CEO Council and maintains memberships on a multitude of local chambers of commerce and local charitable organizations.


I believe, as a leader, if you aren’t constantly evolving, you are stagnant and potentially setting yourself up for failure.

Surrounding myself with people that are more diverse, smarter and more successful than I, that aren’t afraid to speak their truth. I am super involved with the CEO Council of Tampa Bay … this has been vital to the continued growth and success of my business and for me, personally.


Becoming the CEO in Ascension and having that same public board of directors believe in me enough to send me to Harvard and Kellogg for C-level continuing education. In 2015, after a very unfriendly takeover of my public medical device organization, I purchased my first company on my own, which is 100% owned by me. In November of 2022, I pivoted and physically moved my entire organization into a new digital corporate office environment and I am super thrilled to see what my team can achieve next.

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