Washington — The Plastics Industry Association has hired a new head of its government affairs and lobbying work, bringing on a veteran of Washington politics.
Mark O'Connell is joining the group as vice president of government affairs, where he will oversee its efforts directed at federal, state and local governments, as well as represent its political action committee, the group said in an Oct. 7 news release.
Before joining the association, O'Connell was director of government affairs for Cognizant Technology Solutions, an information technology service firm, since 2013, as well as holding other corporate lobbying jobs in his career.
Within government, he had been a deputy associate administrator at the Environmental Protection Agency in 2008 and 2009, and legislative director and chief of staff to New Jersey Republican Congressman Jim Saxton from 1992 to 2003.
The association said O'Connell is skilled at building coalitions across party and ideological lines.
"Mark's combination of Capitol Hill, federal agency, state legislative, and corporate government affairs experience will prove invaluable to our members," said Matt Seaholm, president and CEO of the association. "I'm thrilled to have Mark on board."
Seaholm previously was the organization's vice president of government affairs but was promoted to CEO when the group dismissed its former president and CEO Tony Radoszewski in March.