Karen Marsal
Senior Director
Quick facts
Works on high-profile crisis management and debtor advisory cases
27+ years of experience in the finance field, including 16+ years in the turnaround industry
Specializes in financial restructuring, business performance improvement and profitability improvement
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Karen Marsal is a Senior Director with Alvarez & Marsal. Since joining A&M in 1992, she has worked on high-profile crisis management and debtor advisory cases. Today, she brings more than 27 years experience in the finance field, including more than 16 years in the turnaround industry.

Ms. Marsal specializes in financial restructuring, business performance improvement and profitability improvement spanning both public and private sectors, most recently with a focus on education. She provides these services for entities within and apart from the bankruptcy process in senior advisory or interim management roles. Ms. Marsal's primary areas of expertise include operations management, cost control / reduction, operations efficiencies, systems development, streamlining systems, outsourcing, centralization of services, and development and evaluation of strategic business plans.  

She currently serves as the CFO of federal grant funds for the Government of the U.S. Virgin Islands, where her responsibilities include the management and oversight of approximately $70 million of U.S. Department of Education grant awards. Some of her other notable Public Sector assignments include St. Louis Public Schools, where she served as Interim Chief Operations Officer in restructuring the District, and reduced a $90 million deficit through streamlining of operations, cost reductions and process management. Ms. Marsal also served in an Interim Management capacity for the not-for-profit The Legal Aid Society, the largest and oldest law firm of public defenders in the U.S., where she assisted in eliminating a $22 million operating deficit. 

Additionally, Ms. Marsal has provided the impetus for major cost savings and efficiencies that eventually lead to the successful turnaround of major clients in the apparel, education, healthcare and retail industries. Notable projects have included Wherehouse Entertainment, a chain with more than 400 retail outlets; Ithaca Industries, a major brand apparel manufacturing firm; Phillips Colleges, Inc., the largest chain of for profit colleges in the world with 96 individual campuses; and Glenbeigh Hospitals, an upscale national chain of chemical abuse and weight loss clinics, among others.

Before joining A&M, she was Senior Vice President of Meridien Banks Public Finance division in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Ms. Marsal also spent part of her professional career as an Investment Banker in the Public Finance Division of Chemical Bank in New York.  As an investment banker she acted as a financial advisor and underwrote tax exempt municipal bonds / notes, including TANS, RANS, TRANS, GO bonds and IRBs, for school districts, housing agencies (single and multi-family bonds), and  state and local governments.

Ms. Marsal earned her bachelor's degree in business, with a minor in operations, from Walsh College. She serves on the advisory boards of the Broward County Florida Special Olympics and the Chris Everett Children's Hospital of the North Broward Hospital District.