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.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.