PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT EXPERT
STRATEGIC LEADERSHIP ADVISOR
COMPLEX COMMUNICATION CONSULTANT
As Founder and Chief Executive Officer of WordSmithRapport™, Karima brings more than two decades of comprehensive, blue chip experience in law, business, and academia to the field of human capital asset growth and professional development. A leading authority in cutting-edge adult education, Karima is distinguished by her commitment to excellence and extraordinary talent for elevating executive brands around the globe. Masterful at her craft, she advises individuals and organizations on the dynamics of leadership development, complex communication and performance management. Her shrewd ability to identify nuances and empower clients to achieve greater purpose and results is what makes Karima an indispensable asset in today's competitive global environment.
Karima speaks regularly, nationally and internationally in her areas of expertise, and is a TEDx Speaker, Corporate Speaker, certified by the International Association of Corporate Speakers, a Professional Member of the National Speakers Association, an esteemed graduate of the Bill Gove Executive Speech Workshop, and a Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM), United States Senate.
Prior to founding WordSmithRapport™, Karima spent more than a decade working exclusively with corporate litigation based firms where she focused on corporate compliance, commercial transactions, and complex foreign litigation. Introduced to the world of complex litigation while clerking for the late Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr., she learned to manage voluminous caseloads and developed an affinity for resolving high-stakes disputes. For the past ten years she has served diligently as a trusted advisor to the Lawyer Assistance Committee for the Lawyer Assistance Program of the District of Columbia Bar, a confidential program that provides assistance to lawyers, judges, and law students who experience problems that interfere with their personal lives or their ability to serve as counsel or officers of the court.
Additionally, Karima previously served as the Grand Assistant Legal Advisor for the Georgiana Thomas Grand Chapter OES, PHA.
Bilingual, Karima speaks both Spanish and English fluently. Her foreign language skills have allowed her to perform a variety of highly specialized tasks across industries, including foreign and domestic litigation, academic instruction, and clinical research for the University of California Davis Medical Center and the California School of Professional Psychology.
As an Associate Professor of Political Science and Pre-law Studies at the Savannah State University in Savannah, Georgia, she developed core curriculum and lectured on constitutional and criminal law, legal research and writing, global issues, and American government. Additionally, she served as an adjudicator on the Judicial Council for Academic Affairs and assisted university counsel in resolving complex issues related to FERPA, Title VII and the ADA. Outside of the SSU academic community, she developed executive seminars for a variety of high-profile organizations, including the Army Corps of Engineers, The United States Coast Guard, Office of Equity & Diversity, and the Law Offices of Willie T. Yancey, Sr.
As Chief Operations Officer for Celebrity Chef Jerome Brown (Personal Chef to the Stars) and Hot Grits, LLC, Karima managed complex global operations and was the primary advisor to the executive team. In her previous role as Chief Branding Officer, she developed the company’s primary brand architecture and worked to promote brand visibility and impact.
A native of California, Karima launched her academic career at the University of California Davis, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. Following graduation, she was awarded an Academic Fellowship at Cornell University, where she joined faculty in researching, evaluating and presenting fundamental issues on multicultural education. Upon returning from Ithaca, she accepted a position with the legislative and regulatory firm, State Net | California Journal, where she cut her teeth in the field of professional development and liaised with members of Congress, Congressional staff, and executives in the public and private sectors. She earned her Juris Doctor in New England at the Roger Williams University School of Law in Bristol, RI and clerked for the Honorable Jacob Hagopian, United States District Court for the District of Rhode Island.
Karima is the author of Poised For Excellence (Palgrave Macmillan) and is featured in Flat World Navigation: Collaboration and Networking in the Global Digital Economy (KoganPage). She is a former member of the Forbes Coaches Council, an invitation-only community for top tier business, career and professional coaches whose industry success has been publicly recognized. Currently, Karima sits on the Editorial Board for the Silent Warrior, a publication produced by the Augustus F. Hawkins Foundation, and is a regular contributor to the Human Capital Institute, Entrepreneur, Success, Black Enterprise, and Speaker magazines, where she provides expert insight on professional development topics across industries.
She is the President of the Global Advisory Board for the Women's Global Leadership Initiative and has served on global advisory councils in Egypt and India, providing strategic advice to organizations seeking to engage international stakeholders. Additionally, she sits on the Board of Directors and serves on the Governance Committee for The Franklin Foundation for Innovation. She previously served in a reciprocal capacity for the African Energy Association. Karima is also featured on SheSource, an online brain trust of female experts on diverse topics designed to serve journalists, producers, and booking agents who need female guests and sources.
Karima is an avid wine connoisseur and one of an increasing number of women to join the ranks of wine professionals around the globe. Her professional credentials include Sommelier, Court of Master Sommeliers and Advanced Certification (Merit), Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET). Her practical experience includes Wine Educator, Paradise Springs Winery; Wine Consultant/Lecturer, BlancNoire; and investment cellaring. A previous contributor to 'Drinking Made Easy' (curated by Food Network and Travel Channel star, Zane Lamprey), she provided regular expertise on food and wine pairings, viticulture, oenology and current affairs for nearly four years. She currently contributes to A Life Well Drunk, where she focuses on all things wine, spirits, travel and lifestyle.