Mary Louise Starkey speaks out about accusers

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Denver Police Department
Mary Louise Starkey

It's been a while since we've heard from Mary Louise Starkey, founder of the Denver butler school Starkey International School for Household Management, who's been in and out of jail and court for allegedly assaulting Starkey student Lisa Kirkpatrick -- and then in and out of jail and court again for supposedly attacking her onetime husband (the latter charge was eventually cleared). So it was quite a surprise to notice that one "Mrs. Mary Starkey" -- quite possibly the "First Lady of Service" herself -- posted a comment yesterday on several of our Starkey follow-up stories, requesting that students and customers read an online press release posted several days ago.

The release, referring to the 2007 Kirkpatrick assault allegations, notes that Kirkpatrick's allegations have been "finally found not to be credible in part due to a long addiction to narcotics; she further had not disclosed serious health conditions upon application to the School."

In Denver District Court last June, Starkey pleaded guilty to assaulting Kirkpatrick and was ordered to pay Kirkpatrick $10,2000. Starkey was also given a two-year deferred sentence provided that she abide by probation requirements such as no further violations and anger-management treatment. Late last month, however, the court granted a motion filed on Starkey's behalf for early termination of that probation period. "She has successfully completed her deferred judgment sentence and the charges will be dismissed," says Lynn Kimbrough, communications director for the Denver District Attorney's Office. "She's done."

"I have emerged from this ordeal stronger, wiser, a much better leader, and even more committed than ever to my mission of creating and supporting service as a profession," Starkey is quoted as saying in the online release, which includes a few pot shots at "Denver's local tabloid" Westword. It notes that our "sensationalized story" about Kirkpatrick was "designed to destroy Mrs. Starkey's long standing credibility in the Private Service industry." The full letter is reprinted below.

Press Release

June 1, 2009

Mrs. Mary Louise Starkey, Founder and CEO of Starkey International and author of groundbreaking texts such as The Original Guide to Private Service Management and featured in the Wall Street Journal's best seller, Richistan has released a statement regarding the status of her 2007 assault allegations brought by a former student at the Starkey International School for Household Management. "Under advisement of my attorney, I'm very relieved to finally be able to speak to these charges," Mrs. Starkey commented.

Mrs. Starkey's legal saga was first reported in Denver's local tabloid Westword. The sensationalized story, designed to destroy Mrs. Starkey's long-standing credibility in the Private Service industry, was instigated by the accuser whose story was finally found not to be credible in part due to a long addiction to narcotics; she further had not disclosed serious health conditions upon application to the School. Mrs. Starkey continued, "These two plus years have been very difficult. I always knew that Starkey worked diligently to identify those not appropriate for the selective career path of Private Service. However, I never dreamed my holding a standard of integrity and excellence for service would ultimately be used to assail the industry. I have learned a great deal about myself, I have discovered true friends, found dedicated employees, and many loyal Graduates who not only share in our unique goals and standards of expertise, but are surpassing them in their individual service careers; and for this I am very proud and most grateful. I have emerged from this ordeal stronger, wiser, a much better leader, and even more committed than ever to my mission of creating and supporting service as a profession."

Mrs. Starkey's Institute is world renowned for training top professionals for placement as Estate and Household Managers, Personal Assistants and Private Chef's in legacy wealth and other high net worth client's homes. The Starkey Household Management System and Software is the first of its kind, positioning Service as an Expertise and taking domestic service out of servitude and into a well paid profession. Known as the "First Lady of Service", Mrs. Starkey has been training and placing private service professionals worldwide since 1981. "In spite of what occurred with this student, I remain committed to our Graduates and our Clients. Again, I am grateful that this is behind me now and focusing on the present, and our very bright future. The Private Service industry is exploding and I am proud to be on the cutting edge of educating professionals to be successful in these specialized positions of running high-tech, high-touch estates for discerning clients who expect the best of the best. Our curriculum and software is second to none, and we are standing strong."

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