Karen Bushell

Montgomery County Clerk of the Court

Karen will continue to be the first out LGBTQ Clerk of the Court in Montgomery County!


Karen Bushell was appointed as Clerk of the Court for Montgomery County, Maryland, filling the remainder of the previous Clerk’s term upon her retirement. When Ms. Bushell took office, she brought with her a distinguished, respected career and 20 years of experience with the Maryland Judiciary.  

Karen began her career with the Judiciary in the District Court for Montgomery County as a Human Resources Associate. In 2002 she was selected and promoted to serve as Administrative Assistant to Judge Katherine Savage. Upon Judge Savage’s retirement in 2013, she was again selected as Administrative Assistant to Judge Nelson W. Rupp, Jr. In 2014 Karen was appointed to Chief Deputy Clerk of the Circuit Court for Montgomery County, Maryland. As Chief Deputy, she worked closely with the previous Clerk of Court, from 2014 to her 2021 appointment as Clerk. 

Throughout her career, Ms. Bushell has both volunteered and been selected to serve on State-wide committees, all with the common goal of enhancing and improving the Maryland Court system. In 2021, Ms. Bushell graduated from a four year program developed by the National Center for State Courts. Karen is married to Annie Shane and together they have raised six children and have six grandchildren. Tragically, in 2017, they lost their youngest son, Kevin, while he was serving in the US Navy. He was one of ten sailors that lost their lives when an oil tanker collided with the USS John McCain while in the Singapore Strait. 

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