Kerr, a 14-time winner on the LPGA Tour and ranked eighth in the world, shot a 3-under 69 at the Blackwolf Run Championship Course to tie Brittany Lincicome and Lizette Salas for the top spot.
Salas is a tour rookie who has finished no better than 22nd in any of her eight appearances on the circuit.
Another rookie, 17-year-old sensation Lexi Thompson, was a shot behind at 70 along with Jennie Lee, Ai Miyazato and Beatriz Recari.
Thompson became the youngest winner in tour history last year and is the youngest player ever to qualify for this event, having done so at age 12 in 2007.
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