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Michael O'Connor

Senior Director of Government Affairs — Eli Lilly and Company

As the senior advisor of state government affairs for Eli Lilly and Co., Michael O’Connor (B.A. ’86, Political Science) is responsible for creating and applying Lilly corporate strategy as it involves Indiana state government. Additionally, he serves as the Indiana task force chair of Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, overseeing this vital industry’s involvement in Indiana. Before transitioning to his position at Eli Lilly, O’Connor was a principal with the state’s largest lobbying and public affairs agency, Bose Public Affairs Group.

 O’Connor has extensive experience in diverse government jobs at all levels, his most recent being his position as chief deputy mayor and chief of staff for Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson. Before that, he worked as associate administrator at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, D.C., and as commissioner of the Indiana Department of Environmental Management under Governors Bayh and O’Bannon.

 Throughout his extensive career, O’Connor has demonstrated an ability to successfully manage and lead. He previously served as co-chair of the United Way Ready to Learn, Ready to Earn committee and currently co-chairs the agency’s Early Learning Business Roundtable. O’Connor also serves on the board of Goodwill Industries of Central Indiana and the Goodwill Educational Initiatives board of directors. He was appointed to fill a position on the IPS board to serve as District 1 commissioner in 2015 and was re-elected in November 2016.

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