Neil Dhillon: High Profile Positions

Neil Dhillon has a large amount of experience as an executive in the field of Communication, Public Relations, and Public Affairs. His high profile positions In the United States Congress and being appointed by President Bill Clinton to a senior Advisory position really gave him a great start. From there he worked hard to work eventually for some of the most influential firms in the United States.

One of the Firms he worked for was Financial Dynamics where he was the United States Director of Public Affairs. As the United States Director of Public Affairs, Neil Dhillon was tasked with providing strategic Communications to the firm’s global clientele. He was responsible for identifying and retaining government focused firms in an effort to acquire or partner with them.

After three very successful years at Financial Dynamics, Neil Dhillon began working for Ruder Finn. At Ruder Finn, Neil Dhillon served as a managing Director and was the top public affairs counselor and lobbyist while he was also in charge of the very large Washington D.C. office. Much of what he did for Ruder Finn revolved around Managing the D.C. office, Securing interviews with top media outlets for clients, and providing strategic counsel to clients.

After leaving Ruder Finn, Neil Dhillon was named as the Managing Director and Senior Vice President of Governmental Relations for the MSL Group. He managed the Washington D.C. Office and helped to turn it around. He also served as the top communications strategist, and lobbyist. At each of his positions, he was a great success story.

Neil Dhillon: Lobbyists do Good

Neil Dhillon is an expert lobbyist who has the experience and connections to be a great lobbyist. Being a lobbyist however is not what many people make it out to be. One of the main pieces of a lobbyist’s job is education. Lobbyists are responsible for having a very thorough understanding of their client’s positions and for educating elected officials and policy makers.

Neil Dhillon knows that elected officials and policy makers often are very knowledgeable in some fields. Often they are more knowledgeable then the public on a wide variety of issues. However, it would be impossible for an elected official or policy maker to be an expert on every subject that may come before them in the form of bills or referendums. That is where the most important role of lobbyists comes in, as educators.

Lobbyists help to educate policy maker and elected officials on subjects they may have no experience or knowledge of. This education is an important part of understanding legislation. Legislation can and does happen on a very wide variety of subjects and lobbyists often are responsible for teaching the congressperson about what the legislation is, and the background information. They, of course, will also hope to get the congressperson to vote in their clients favor.

Neil Dhillon knows that this role is very important and enjoys the challenge of learning a subject well so that he can teach the subject to members of congress. Neil Dhillon knows that this a very valuable service, and he understands that lobbyists play an important role in legislation.

Neil Dhillon Interviewed

Neil Dhillon sat down for an interview with Time Magazine in 1993, and the interview was mostly a reflection on the previous couple of years and a look forward towards the future of Indian Americans in United States Politics. Some of the things he spoke of were somewhat prophetic in his recognition of what the future would hold for Indian Americans in American Politics.

He remembered that he was at an Asian American rally in 1992. The rally was held during the Democratic National Convention that year, which was being held in New York. He noted that there were more than a thousand people at the rally and Hillary Clinton attended the rally. While he was excited to see the event so thoroughly attended, he was also disappointed with how few the Indians Americans in attendance were.

During the interview, Neil Dhillon recalled that at the time, President Bill Clinton has made 33 appointments of Asian Americans, and only three of those appointments were Indian Americans, and he was the highest ranking among them. In the interview, Neil Dhillon seemed to muse on the loss of time that Indian Americans had not been involved in the political office. Throughout the interview Neil, Dhillon continued that line of thinking and Neil Dhillon seemed to understand the importance of the Indian American community to get involved in the political process.

Throughout the interview as Neil Dhillon talks about the role if Indian Americans in Politics the future of Indian Americans in United States politics and hopes for more to be involved stresses the importance if that involvement. He was looking down the road by ten years. Now 20 years down the road, it is obvious that his desire for more Indian Americans to be in American Politics is being realized.

Neil Dhillon: Communications Expert

Neil Dhillon worked at some of the top communications and business advisory firms in his time since he worked at the White House. Working for President Bill Clinton as a senior level advisor gave Neil Dhillon a lot of insight into what it takes to be a success. One of the companies he provided that experience to, was Financial Dynamics.

Financial Dynamics was a large firm with more than 450 employees in 17 locations around the world. They were one of the largest financial and business communications consultancies and provided a comprehensive range of boardroom solutions. FTI Consulting recently purchased Financial Dynamics in a very large acquisition.

Neil Dhillon was the United States Director of Public Affairs for Financial Dynamics, and he was there to provide strategic communications to Financial Dynamics global clientele. Neil Dhillon was also responsible for identifying and retaining government focused firms in Asia and Africa. Neil Dhillon was also tasked with providing expert congressional testimony training to Senior Executives and Chief Executive Officers scheduled to appear before United States Senate and United States House committees.

Another of the main responsibilities for Neil Dhillon was to lead high level crisis communications media training. He did this for clients who were foreign dignitaries, Chief Executive Officers, Fortune 500 Senior Executives and for Nonprofit organization leaders. Neil Dhillon was able to successfully perform the duties of this position in a very successful way during the three years he was with Financial Dynamics as well as continuing to teach himself new skills.

Neil Dhillon: Ruder Finn

Neil Dhillon has worked for a number of very good companies since he left the White House where he was a senior aide to President Bill Clinton. One of the great Communications Agencies that Neil Dhillon has worked for since leaving the White House was Ruder Finn. Ruder Finn currently has locations in San Francisco, New York, Beijing, London, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, India, and Guangzhou.

While at Ruder Finn, Neil Dhillon served as the Top public affairs counselor and lobbyist in his role as the Managing Director for the Washington D.C. Office. In his role with Ruder Finn, Neil Dhillon helped to secure top tier interviews with the media for his clients. Some of the interviews he secured were with some of the most influential media in the United States including the NBC Today Show, CBS’s 60 minutes, National Public Radio, the Washington Post, The New York Times, ABC’s Good Morning America, and CNN.

The other main function Neil Dhillon had at Ruder Finn was to provide strategic counsel to client communications staff, CEO’s and Boards of Directors. He helped them understand and handle crisis communications and corporate communications as well as lobbying and public affairs. For a company like Ruder Finn that has a focus around many issues that touch these aspects of communications and lobbying, Neil Dhillon was the right person to bring in and run the Washington D.C. office.

This experience at Ruder Finn was important to Neil Dhillon because he recognized what a great opportunity it was to work for one of the top Communications agencies in the world. His time at Ruder Finn proved that Neil Dhillon could handle working in any field and succeed.

Neil Dhillon: Indian American Success

Neil Dhillon was one of the very few Americans of Indian descent that has had the opportunity to work at the highest levels of government.  He was the first Indian American to serve as a Legislative Director for a member of Congress, and he was the first Indian American to ever be appointed Chief of Staff to a member of Congress. When he was chosen to work as a senior official in the Clinton White House, he knew that it was a big responsibility to not only the office of the president, but also a big responsibility to the Indian American community.

Until recently, it was still rare for Indian Americans to be at the highest levels of government.  Neil Dhillon had one shining example to look to as he was contemplating entering politics, Dalip Singh Saund. Dalip was the first Indian American elected to the United States Congress. He was brought into office in 1957 and served for six years. He was instrumental in opening doors that Neil Dhillon and other since then, have been able to move through. Neil Dhillon knows that much of his success on Capitol Hill can be attributed to the success that Dalip fought for, Dalip, in 1962, suffered a stroke that left him unable to walk or speak without assistance. He lost reelection the following year by 12 percentage points.

Neil Dhillon knows that without a groundbreaker such as Dalip, it would have taken many more years for Indian Americans to break through and into those high levels of American Politics. With the doors that Dalip opened, Neil Dhillon has been able to make the most of it and worked for the Clinton White House before moving into his very successful career as a lobbyist and public affairs executive.

Neil Dhillon: Leading PSC Program

Neil Dhillon is a proud graduate of American University located in Washington DC. American University has one of the leading political science programs in the country. Neil Dhillon that being from Maryland American University offered him the chance to follow his educational goals at a great University while still being close to home.

The American University Political Science department is located in the School of Public Affairs. Neil Dhillon knows that The School of Public Affairs, because of its location and because it has been around for 80 years, American University Students have great access to some of the best professors as well as opportunities. The passion he developed at American University can still be seen in his writing such as this one.

One of the top Public Affairs programs in the world, American University, has produced some of the most influential people of the past 80 years. Numerous United States Elected Officials, Ambassadors from many Nations including multiple advisors to the United Nations Assembly in New York. The first female Assistant United States Secretary of States, Carol Laise, who also became the United States Ambassador to Nepal, was a graduate of American University.

As one of the most influential schools in the American political system, American University has played a huge part in training the world leaders including Neil Dhillon. One of the approaches to offering great education as to offer many of the Masters Degree courses during the evening. This allows the many professionals in the DC area to work towards their Masters while working full time. Neil Dhillon understands how important that can be for many people. To be able to pursue an advanced degree while still working is a great service being offered.

Neil Dhillon: Children Focused Legislation

Neil Dhillon was a part of some of the most meaningful legislation to pass through congress since the Great Society legislation of the 1960’s. Neil Dhillon worked for United States House of Representatives Robert Matsui of California as his Chief of Staff. As Chief of Staff, his responsibilities included advising the Representative and overseeing legislation that the Representative would introduce. When Representative Matsui drafted, in 1991, legislation the heart of child welfare reform it was a great day for American families. It was also a great day for Representative Matsui and his staff.



The bill had some key features written to help children, most of which expanded the various social services available to help children. Some of the bills that came out of Representative Matsui’s Office, while Neil Dhillon was the Chief of Staff, which were important for children included; The Homeless Outreach act, Affordable Housing for Young Americans Act, Children and Families Service Act, Affordable Education for Americans Act, and the Children and Pregnant Women Insurance Act.

Bob Matsui, with Neil Dhillon as his Chief of Staff was also able to get the rest of congress to help him designate May 1991 as “National Foster Care Month” and he did so again in May of 1992. They understood that getting the designation was important for the public largely because it helped bring light on the issue.

Neil Dhillon knew that two of the first pieces of legislation Bob Matsui introduced in congress were concerned with helping children. Whether it was introducing legislation to help children or fighting for that legislation, Bob Matsui knew that his Chief of Staff, Neil Dhillon would be there to help him.

Neil Dhillon: DOT

Neil Dhillon was proud to be a part of the United States Department of transportation because he knew that it allowed him the opportunity to work for one of the younger departments and it had such a broad agenda with a well defined mission. President Clinton appointed him to the position he saw it for the great opportunity it was.

Although as a student of political science and American Government it did not surprise Neil, it often surprises people how many of the vital agencies fall under the purview of the Department of Transportation. Two of the agencies that seem to stump people are:

The Maritime administration which not only takes care of the ports and shipping routes but also maintains the merchant marine vessels that can act as auxiliary military ships in case of national need.

Probably the most unrecognized agency, in the Department of Transportation is the Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation. The SLSDC was formed in 1954 by statute. It was created to “construct, operate, and maintain the part of the St. Lawrence Seaway which is within the territorial limits of the United States.

Neil Dhillons was a proud member of the Department of Transportation and being an advisor to Bill Clinton was a great experience. While the Department of Transportation may not be the most talked about or discussed of the Federal Departments, it is composed of many of the agencies that keep the country safe and enables the great commerce between the United States and foreign powers.

Neil Dhillon: White House Appointment

Neil Dhillon was appointed by Bill Clinton to serve as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Government Affairs in the United States Department of Transportation. The Secretary that Clinton named was Federico Pena. Federico Pena had been the transportation advisor during Bill Clinton’s successful campaign. Neil Dhillon understood the importance of the Department of Transportation’s mission. According to the United States Department of Transportation website, their mission is to:

“Serve the United States by ensuring a fast, safe, efficient, accessible and convenient transportation system that meets our vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future.”

That was the mission that Neil Dhillon was excited to be an integral part of. That mission is of vital importance. The government affairs office acts as the advisors to the secretary of transportation when it comes to legislative issues. It also is the principle advisor to the secretary on congressional relations and policy matter for all levels of government. This meant much hard work while he was at the white house. Hard Work that he was happy to be a part of because he knew the work he did there mattered.

Neil Dhillon was a great fit for this position because he had the background to make sure that communication between the white house and congress remained positive. Serving congress for ten years, he was the director/speechwriter for Beverly Byron a US House member from Maryland. After that, he became the Chief of Staff for Bob Matsui a US House member from California.