Kelly Paden

Contact Info

Kelly Paden

Partner in the Orange County Office


James “Kelly” Paden is currently a Partner in the Orange County office of Hardesty LLC and has over 30 years of experience in both public and private global manufacturing companies. Serving in senior finance and business operational roles for a broad spectrum of industries ranging from medical and biomedical engineering, automotive start-up’s, advanced plastics, semiconductor, and advanced ceramics, and prod to bestow an extensive career serving the aerospace industry for both domestic and foreign military markets and commercial aerospace markets.

Kelly is the unicorn consultant that sets himself apart from the others by offering a unique, yet a broad-ranging combination of skills and experience within multiple markets and industries, effectively augmenting Hardesty’s diverse talent deck offering to its clients. Kelly is our forensic accountant, where his career-long pursuit and study of manufacturing accounting & cost analysis best practices makes him the perfect complement to any of our assigned CFO’s as they execute the varying demands of the client’s contracted scope of work, especially within M&A cost & valuation assessments, and/or focused turn-around efforts for acquired manufacturing companies.

Kelly provides excellent consulting service-based solutions for our clients in a wide range of roles including, but not limited to, interim contracts for CFO and Controller level offices for transitional and restructuring requirements, as well as individual project assignments, focused for forensic and analytical accounting of varying natures. The range is vast, not limited, proudly to include the set-up and deployment of ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) systems, the establishment, and certification of Standard Costing systems with support offered throughout the process to the conclusion beyond the “Go-Live” date and included support lead roles throughout any third-party audit and verification of the systems.

Kelly’s integrity in the aerospace finance roles allows him to serve the unique client requirements within this challenging marketplace. Consulting services offered include Leadership and Advisory roles in, obtaining Accounting System acceptance from managing government agencies such as DCAA, also Contract Cost Proposal submittals for all contract types, and Preparation & Submittal of Cost Substantiation Invoices for contract line items (CLINs) based upon contracted cost reimbursement requirements governed by FAR regulations. Services offered by Hardesty allow the client an opportunity to avoid costly expenses in retaining these talents within their full-time employee pool, as Kelly’s services can be contracted “on-demand and as-needed.” These are unique, powerful practice options for small to mid-size manufacturing and service companies with customers using Government contracts governed by Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) regulations.

Providing consulting services full-time for over five years, Kelly offers a different and vast talent that specializes in manufacturing and service-based businesses and is also applicable to most business models and markets. Using an extensive skill base of time-proven fundamentals employing advanced Excel models and functionality, clients can expect analytical deliverables to be robust in content, yet simplistic in design and architecture. Kelly has educational backgrounds in Economics from California University of Irvine, and Business Management & Accounting from University of Phoenix, as well as certification training in APICS CPIM Inventory Management & Supply Chain, and System Failure Analysis from Cal Poly Pomona. Kelly can also provide customized training explicitly targeted for a full-time staff of varying subjects including subjects in Cost Accounting Principles and focused Advanced Excel Spreadsheet Model development and utilization.