January 20, 2022
Karen Espelund (born 1 February 1961 in Trondheim) is a Norwegian director, organizational worker and former football player who is known through his time as general secretary of the Norwegian Football Association (NFF). Since 2010, she has held the position of county director for culture and communication in Sør-Trøndelag county municipality (later Trøndelag county municipality). Espelund has a degree in social sciences, with an intermediate degree in history and sociology and a diploma in social planning. She began her football career playing on Trondheims-Ørn's A-team from 1976 to 1985 (several years also as captain). The club became unofficial Norwegian champion in 1977 and unofficial league champion in 1983. She played 309 games and scored 56 goals on Ørn's A-team. She has also played two A-national matches for Norway in 1981-82. From 1988 to 1999, she was a board member of the NFF and from 1996 vice president. In 1999, she was given the position of Secretary General and held it until 2009 when she chose to resign as a result of a notification case. The handling of Espelund's resignation was one of the reasons why football president Sondre Kåfjord was not nominated for the presidential job for a new term. In 2010, she was employed as county director for culture and communication in Sør-Trøndelag county municipality. Espelund has held several board positions. For the period 2007–2009, she was chair of UEFA's Women's Committee, a position she had held since 2001. From 2011, she sits on UEFA's board. She has also been chairman of the board of the Youth's cultural parade. In her youth she was active in Socialist Youth. In terms of football, she has mentioned Norwegian Jan Christiansen, Brazilian Socrates and French Zinedine Zidane as her favorites.