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Monaghan keeps state department on track

Kelly Monaghan - Office Specialist - Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection

Kelly Monaghan – Office Specialist –
Department of Agriculture,
Trade and Consumer Protection

When it comes to administrative rules, Kelly Monaghan is the go-to expert.

One of her duties as office specialist for the state Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection has her coordinating the administrative-rules process. Monaghan is the central point person for everyone in her agency. She keeps everyone involved in the process on track and makes sure they hold final hearings and fulfill other obligations.

Over the four years she’s been in the position, Monaghan has shepherded into existence 26 permanent administrative rules and 21 emergency rules.

Her extensive knowledge of the administrative-rules process is just one of many qualities that make her indispensable to the agency, said Ben Brancel, secretary of the DATCP.

“Kelly is known for the quality of her work, dedication to her team and commitment to customer service,” he said. “Staff across the agency rely on Kelly for her knowledge of administrative rules, public records and policy-board procedures. Our agency is blessed to have someone with Kelly’s can-do attitude as a member of our legal staff.”

Monaghan also is the liaison to DATCP’s nine-member board, the legal assistant to the agency’s attorneys and she coordinates open-records requests for the agency. This past year, she reviewed and prepared 37,000 pages of records for release.

Karley Downing, chief legal counsel for DATCP and Monaghan’s supervisor, said Monaghan’s work on with open-records has made the agency a leader in transparency and open government.

“Kelly is a rock star when it comes to her dedication, hard work, customer service, and professionalism,” Downing said. “She plays an essential role in DATCP’s efforts to deliver efficient and effective programs and services to Wisconsin agriculture, consumers and businesses.”

Although wearing all those different hats can be difficult, Monaghan enjoys making sure everything runs smoothly.

“I like the challenge,” she said. “I like to be a problems solver. For me, juggling all those different things, I enjoy it.”

Away from the office, Monaghan enjoys spending time outdoors. She still lives in her hometown of Oconomowoc on the same farmstead where she grew up with her two older brothers. It was a dairy farm then, but her dad has since switched to growing crops such as corn and alfalfa. She and her husband live in her grandparents’ old house.

Monaghan and her husband also enjoy traveling. The pair visited Australia for their honeymoon and are debating whether to go to Ireland or Alaska for their 10-year anniversary.

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