Reginald Gilliam Jr., who was most recently senior vice president of government affairs for Sodexo, died March 28 of lymphoma. He was 67.
Considered a trailblazing African-American lobbyist, Gilliam served as commissioner of the U.S. Interstate Commerce Commission during the Carter administration.
He established the Sodexo government affairs department in 2002.
Gilliam, a Harlem native, was a founder of the Harvard Black Law Student Association and served as its first chairman, according to a press release announcing his death. On Capitol Hill, he worked for then-Sen. John Glenn (D-Ohio) as legislative counsel in 1975. He later was chief of staff to then-Rep. Louis Stokes (D-Ohio).
His private sector experience included a stint with the firm Hill+Knowlton, where his clients included the Republic of Botswana and the city of Cleveland, the press release said.
In 1998, he received a lifetime achievement award from the Harvard Black Law Association, and the Washington Government Relations Group (an organization of African-American lobbyists) in 2011 gave him its president’s award for leadership and excellence.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.