A Jill Kelley Timeline: From Birth to Petraeus

jill kelleyAs the David Petraeus-Gen. Allen-Paula Broadwell-Jill Kelley "love Pentagon" scandal continues to get more and more twisted and convoluted and crazy, we're either tuning out completely or tuning in obsessively. But even if you've been following the story, it's easy to get confused about what's what and who's who. But one thing's for sure: It's not hard to see what was going on with socialite Jill Kelley all along ...

Whether she likes it or not, the 37-year-old, Tampa, Florida-based wife and mom is in the media now for a reason -- perhaps as the result of a long-standing personal history of striving for a snazzy, untouchable social status. Here, a handy biographical timeline that offers some clues to how Jill Kelley molded her image and became a social climber from her earliest days ...


Mid-1970s - Jill Khawam, her twin sister Natalie, and their family left Lebanon for suburban Philadelphia's Huntingdon Valley to escape the turmoil in their homeland. Kelley's father was described as an accomplished musician and her mother was described as "a chef who liked to entertain political and cultural figures."

1993 - Jill was clearly worried about her image from a very young age. While in high school, she and Natalie told their friends that they were going to get nose jobs and "when we do you’ll all be in awe of us." Around this time, she was also a student member of the World Affairs Council and would have been given the opportunity to meet dignitaries at the highest level including presidents, prime ministers, and princes.

1998 - Jill married Dr. Scott Kelley, who is currently a surgeon in the department of Gastrointestinal Oncology at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa.

Spring 2003 - Kelley and her twin sister Natalie moved to Florida from Philadelphia and hosted a dinner party at Tampa's Palm Restaurant to celebrate their decision to move south. Among the guests were Marine Lt. General Michael 'Rifle' DeLong, then second in command to General Tommy Franks at Central Command, former Mayor Dick Greco and his wife Linda, as well as retired Tampa Tribune columnist Tom McEwan.

June 2004 - After reportedly knocking on every door up and down Tampa's elite Bayshore Boulevard until she found a homeowner willing to sell, Kelley and her husband paid $1.5 million for a 4,800-square-foot brick mansion and the two moved in.

2005 - The Kelleys created a cancer charity called the Doctor Kelley Cancer Foundation, which, according to its 2007 tax return, was meant to "conduct research studies into efforts to discover ways to improve the quality of life of terminally ill adult cancer patients."

Late 2007 - By the end of 2007, the charity had gone bankrupt, and records reveal that every penny of the $157,284 it started with was spent on expenses like parties, entertainment, and travel. 

2010 - The Kelleys' real estate holdings collapsed and they soon owed millions to banks. Meanwhile, General Petraeus and his wife, Holly, attended Tampa Bay’s annual pirate-themed festival on Jill and her husband Scott’s front lawn. They apparently arrived with a 28-cop motorcycle escort to the get-together, which had waiters serving up crab cakes and lamb chops. And this is around the time Jill and Gen. John Allen began corresponding via email. (Although a defense official originally stated that the emails numbered 20,000 to 30,000, this number in fact refers to the number of printed pages of correspondence, which actually number “a few hundred,” according to the Washington Post.)

August 2011 - Jill achieved the status of "honorary consul" of South Korea, according to one official, "thanks to her good connections and network." Note: The title of "honorary consul" is symbolic and has no official duties; however, as the Daily Mail points out, "This has not stopped Kelley from sporting license plates that read 'Honorary Consul.'"

Early 2012 - The Kelleys were slammed with lawsuits worth up to $4 million against banks in Florida. Meanwhile, Jill's sister Natalie declared herself bankrupt, owing $3.6 million, according to court filings.

Late October 2012 (approx.) - Jill Kelley places a call to an FBI agent to complain about "jealous" emails allegedly sent by Gen. Petraeus' mistress Paula Broadwell.

November 11, 2012 - Pursued by media in the wake of the breaking Petraeus scandal news, Jill attempted to invoke her honorary diplomatic status by calling to complain about reporters on her property.

What are your thoughts on Jill Kelley's "rise" to notoriety?


Image via SDFL/Splash News

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