President & CEO
Karen Kelly, Nicholson Yachts President and CEO, is passionate about yachts and yachting in a way that brands her as one of the most highly respected and reputable leaders in the industry.
As a sailor in the Caribbean in the 1980s, she developed a deep appreciation for the romance of the sea. As a charter consultant, she’s traveled the world to gain an intimate knowledge of what clients seek and what captains and crew need to do to keep them happy.
Today her company represents a fleet of yachts for sale and charter and a database of thousands of satisfied yacht owners, captains, crew, and charter consultants.
When she’s not assisting clients buying, selling, or managing yachts, or caring for family and friends, she devotes time to several industry associations. She’s a member of the board of directors of the Oliver Hazard Perry Rhode Island, the Rhode Island Marine Trades Association, the International Yacht Brokers Association, the Charter Yacht Brokers Association, and the Yacht Brokers Association of America. She has an approach that is both hands-on and personalized in all her interactions with clients and peers, while also remaining an energetic supporter of her trade.
Rex G. Herbert Jr.
Director, Yacht Sales
Rex Herbert is an experienced sailor and racer, captain, and yacht sales broker. Before joining Nicholson Yachts, he spent 34 years with Sparkman & Stephens, Inc., presiding over transactions for sail and power boats from 15 to 200 feet. He’s also advised on new construction. His extensive crewed charter brokerage experience includes power and sail to 200 feet.
His offshore sailing resume includes 17 round trips from the U.S. Northeast to the West Indies and two transatlantic races. Aboard power yachts, he’s cruised the U.S. Great Lakes, Mississippi River, Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean, Panama, Bahamas, Costa Rica, Galapagos Islands, South of France, Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily and Malta.
His international racing experiences, too numerous to list in full, include 19 Newport to Bermuda Races, 17 Antigua Sailing Weeks, six Marblehead/Halifax Races, two Fastnet/ Channel Race/Cowes Week races, two Sardinia Cup – Maxi Championships, three Swan Rolex Cups, four Antigua Classic Regattas, and seven St Barth’s Bucket Regattas. He’s competed in a total of six Maxi World championships and two transatlantic races.
Communications Director and Fleet Manager
Elaine Lembo, Nicholson Yachts charter manager and communications director; Cruising World magazine editor at large, chartering columnist, sailor and former luxury charter crew. Free-lance writer and editor.
Charter, Brokerage, and Marketing Associate
Julia Towne, Nicholson Yachts charter, brokerage, and marketing associate; bachelor’s degree in leadership and organizational studies, University of Southern Maine.