Kelly graduated from the Lake Area Technical College Agri-Business program in 1984. He received a B.S. degree in Ag Economics from SDSU in 1991 and earned his Masters in Economics at SDSU in 2014. Before he began teaching at Lake Area Technical College, Kelly worked as an Ag Loan Officer at Deuel County National Bank in Clear Lake, SD, and BANKFIRST in Toronto, SD. He lives in Clear Lake and is a member of the Deuel County Lions and Kiwanis.