Karen Lile is the President of Karen Lile Productions. Her family has been in the San Francisco Bay area since the 1850's. Her paternal grandfather came to Oakland in 1918. Her father was born in San Francisco and her parent live on the same street her father was born, when she was born. Karen has been a social entreprenuer since 1982 and has three businesses, including Piano Finders and Karen and Michael Partnership. She has served in numerous community leadership roles over the years and continues to be active in community leadership.
Karen Lile has co-taught ballroom, swing and salsa rueda dance at the Oakland at the Veterans Memorial Building on 200 Grand Avenue in Oakland since 2008. In 2017, Karen Lile Productions became the master renter for the evening and weekend programs when the former master renter, Lake Merritt Dance Center (a non-profit organization), closed its operations at the building. Karen Lile had organized the 22 dance teacehrs/DJs/Organizers together to form the Lake Merritt Dance Organizers Association (LMDOA). The LMDOA is not a for-profit or non-profit organization at this time. It is an informal association made up of former renters of Lake Merritt Dance Center, who decided to organize and negotiate with the city for the continuation of their programs. Karen Lile, was elected to be the Master Renter with the City of Oakland, on behalf of 22 LMDOA members who had current programs in the building.
On December 31, 2017, Lake Merritt Dance Center Closed. The next day, on January 1, 2017, Karen Lile Productions on behalf of the LMDOA renters became the Master Renter for the building and the dance programs that had been ongoing (some since 2001) are continuing. This is thanks to successful negotiations between these 23 renters and dance program organizers and Jennifer King, Downtown Oakland Seniors Center Building Director and Scott Means, Aging & Adult Services Manager of the Human Services Department of the City of Oakland.