About Steve


Steve chose Lexington as his home in 1971. He brought with him his lifelong interest in contributing to strong civic and workplace communities.

Steve’s professional work and his civic interests match closely. He is a founding partner of Roberts & Kay, a research and organization development firm established in 1983. At the local level Steve’s major clients have included Fayette County Public Schools, Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, Blue Grass Community Foundation, and the University of Kentucky. At the state level his clients have included the Governor’s Office of Agricultural Policy, the Council on Postsecondary Education, the Kentucky Department of Education, and the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence. National clients have included the Kettering Foundation, Sustainable Racine, The Paul J. Aicher Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Energy.

Prior to beginning his first term as an at-large member of the Urban County Council in 2010, Steve had many opportunities to contribute to civic life in Lexington. He has served on the boards of the Lexington Transit Authority (LexTran) and the Martin Luther King Neighborhood Association. He helped found the London Ferrill Community Garden and gardens there both as a volunteer and in an individual plot. He is a former Vice Chair of the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government Planning Commission, and former president of the board of the Good Foods Coop. In 1996, Steve and his wife Rona were recipients of the Humanitarian Award from the Bluegrass Chapter, National Conference for Community and Justice.


In his seven years on council, the last three as Vice Mayor, Steve has worked on issues that range from basic services, such as increased funding for needed equipment for police and fire, to quality of life issues such as additional bike/ped trails and increased support for our parks. In addition to his service on numerous committees, commissions, and task forces, Steve has provided leadership as Chair of the Mayor’s Commission on Homelessness, Chair of the Design Excellence Task Force, Chair of the General Government Committee, and Chair of the Infill and Redevelopment Steering Committee.   He has also worked extensively on developing our local food economy, including  generating grant funding for a pilot project that led to the hiring of a dedicated Local Food Coordinator within LFUCG’s Office of Economic Development.  


Steve earned a B.A. from Bowdoin College, an M.A. from Yale University, and an Ed.D. from the University of Kentucky. He is married to Rona Roberts and has three wonderful sons, three wonderful daughters-in-law, and five exceptionally charming grandchildren.