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Photo of attorney Kevin Kelly sworn in Sussex County court
Kevin D. Kelly

Kevin D. Kelly

Contact Me:

Kelly & Ward, LLC
Attorneys At Law

  • Land Use
  • Government
  • Civil Litigation
  • Other Services


Kevin D. Kelly was admitted to the Pennsylvania and New Jersey bars in 1979 and the United States Supreme Court bar in 2000. He is a member of the Sussex County and New Jersey Bar Associations and the New Jersey Institute of Municipal Attorneys. He received the Diplomate in Municipal Law from Rutgers University in 1992. 

Mr. Kelly was Sussex County Counsel from 2018-2021. He has served as municipal counsel for Byram, Frankford, Fredon, Green, Hamburg, Hardyston, Hopatcong, Mount Arlington, Newton, Vernon and West Milford.

Mr. Kelly was counsel for the first privately financed/owned baseball stadium in New Jersey at Skyland's Park in Frankford Township. As developer's counsel, Mr. Kelly obtained approvals for the Sky View Golf Course project including an 18 hole golf course and 65 residential lots in Sparta and approvals for Sussex Commons Lifestyle Outlets, a 350,000 square foot shopping center at Ross' Corner in Frankford Township.

As municipal counsel for Byram Township, he negotiated the public/private construction of the Byram sewer system and the Byram Plaza shopping center. As municipal counsel for West Milford, he successfully defended the Township in complex multi-party oil contamination litigation involving the NJDEP and the Spill Compensation statute.

Mr. Kelly was local counsel for the Southdown Quarry in the successful defense of injunction and environmental actions brought by Sparta Township and the Department of Environmental Protection. He led successful litigation efforts to attack the improper use of municipal zoning regulations in federal cases involving the First Amendment for the International Mahavir Jain Mission in Blairstown and the Fair Housing Act for the Sunrise House treatment facility in Lafayette. As defense counsel, he won the dismissal of all counts in the indictment of the Sussex Borough Police Chief in an obstruction of justice/conspiracy prosecution.

As objector's counsel, Mr. Kelly successfully represented the Lebanon Township Land Coalition before the Planning Board, Law Division and Appellate Division in opposition to an application by Toll Bros. Inc. for subdivision and site plan approval of a 248 acre tract in Lebanon Township.


  • Pope John XXIII High School
  • La Salle University
  • South Texas College of Law
  • Oxford University
  • New York University School of Law
  • Rutgers University

Bar Admission

  • New Jersey, 1979
  • Pennsylvania, 1979
  • Federal District Court of New Jersey, 1979
  • U.S. District Court District of New Jersey, 1980
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 2000

Published Decisions

  • Byram v. Western World, 111 NJ 222, 1988, 1988100883
  • Cheyenne Corporation v. Byram, 14 NJ Tax 167, 1994, App.Div., 1994226181
  • Newark v. Hardyston, 285 NJ Super 385, 1995, App.Div., 1995231184
  • Tanis v. Hampton, 306 NJ Super 588, 1997, App.Div., 1998026201
  • Sussex Commons Associates, LLC v. Rutgers, 416 N.J. Super 537, 2010, App.Div.
  • Sussex Commons Associates, LLC v. Rutgers, 210 N.J 531, 2012
  • In the Matter of the Guardianship of Sally DiNoia, 464 N.J. Super. 562, 2019, App.Div.


  • American Cancer Society Volunteer of the Year, - 1996
  • Sussex County Chamber of Commerce Chairman's Award, - 1998
  • Diplomate: New jersey Municipal Law; Rutgers university, - 1992
  • New Jersey Law Journal: Lawyer of the year, - 2010
  • Northern N.J. Veterans Memorial Cemetery, - 2015
  • Sussex County Bar Association Law Day Award, - 2018
  • VFW Post #441 Meritorious Service Award, - 2018
  • A New Jersey Law Journal Lawyer of the Year

Past Positions

  • Sussex County Prosecutor, Assistant Prosecutor, 1979 to 1986
  • Kelly, Gaus & Holub (Reed & Morro), LLC, Partner, 1986 to 1998
  • County of Sussex, County Counsel, 2018 to 2021

Professional Associations

  • Greater Newton Chamber of Commerce
  • New Jersey Bar Association
  • New Jersey Institute of Municipal Attorneys
  • Sussex County Bar Association, Trustee, 2005 to 2012
  • Sussex County Republican Committee, Municipal Chair, Town of Newton, 1990 to 2017
  • Sussex County Chamber of Commerce, Board of Trustees, 1993 to 1998
  • United Way of Sussex County, Board of Trustees, 2002 to 2008
  • Main Street Newton, Inc., President, 2010 to 2011
  • Skylands Victory PAC, President, 2011 to 2015
  • Sussex County League Of Municipalities
  • Doctors v. Lawyers, Annual United Way Charity Softball Game, 1980 to Present
  • Newton Junior Athletic League