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Dinner and Dialogue with Catlin O'Neill

24 Sep 2012 3:43 PM | Anonymous member

On Friday, September 21st, eleven members of the Women's Congressional Staff Association gathered for dinner at The Hamilton restaurant with Catlin O'Neill, Minority Leader Pelosi's congressional office Chief of Staff.


As the waitress took people's orders, Catlin began by having each person introduce herself and talk about her work on the Hill. After learning about the women, Catlin discussed her own career path.


Catlin was living in New York when September 11th happened, and the events of that day helped spur her decision to change careers and get involved in politics. Starting out on Governor Bill Richardson's campaign and then coming to DC to be an assistant to the Democratic Leader, Catlin talked about her journey to becoming a Chief of Staff, noting that timing and luck were on her side.


As dinner was served, smaller discussions broke off and Catlin was able to answer people's more specific questions, including how to communicate effectively with your Chief of Staff, how to look for jobs when your member is retiring, and how to talk about going to campaign with your supervisors. Catlin also discussed the importance of taking care of yourself in the often stressful work environment and making sure you utilize the resources available to staffers, including the Office of Employee Assistance.


As dinner came to a close, Catlin told everyone she was more than happy to continue these discussions. At the end of the evening, everyone left with some good tips for advancing their careers on the Hill as well as new connections with other WCSA members!


Liz, WCSA Outreach and Community Service Co-Director

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