James J O'Connell


Adjunct Professor
Adjunct Professor


Master of Science in Foreign Service (MSFS)
General profile


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James J. O’Connell
Ceridian Corporation

James O’Connell is Executive Consultant, Ceridian Corporation. Minneapolis-based Ceridian is an information services company that serves the human resources and transportation markets. Ceridian solutions include outsourced and in-house HRMS, payroll and tax filing solutions as well as comprehensive benefits administration services. Ceridian has formed partnerships with more than 150,000 customers.

Dr. O’Connell has been with Ceridian (formerly Control Data Corporation) since 1982. Prior to being named Vice President in 1991, he was Director, International Trade & Policy, with responsibility for Control Data export licensing and finance. Working with the US Departments of Commerce, State and Defense, he played a leadership role in high technology trade with the former Soviet Union, China, India and South Africa. During the administration of President George H.W. Bush, he was appointed to the President’s Export Council Subcommittee on Export Administration.

As head of the Control Data Corporation Washington DC office in the 1990s, Jim was a co-founder of the US-Russia Business Council, building on his earlier work in improving US-USSR cooperation in high technology that culminated in the visit of Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev to CDC’s Minnesota headquarters.

In addition to serving until 2008 on the Board of Directors of BT-Federal, a subsidiary of British Telecommunications, Dr. O’Connell served on the board of trustees of Corporate Voices for Working Families, an organization that supports work-family public policies.

With over thiry years of experience in legislative and regulatory affairs, Jim focuses on HR and workforce policy for Ceridian and its customers. He keeps internal and external audiences informed about policy developments affecting the workplace, fast-changing and complex compliance regulations and economic and public policy issues.

His recent articles include, "Health Savings Accounts: American Idol?" in the November 2007 issue of Benefits & Compensation Digest’s Web Exclusives and "The 21st Century World of Work: Five Megatrends Shaping the Future," in the April-May 2007 issue of IHRIM.link, the magazine of the International Association of Human Resources Information Management

Dr. O’Connell was an advisor to the 21st Century Workforce Commission, created by Congress to study America’s information technology workforce and make recommendations to the President and Congress. The Commission report, A Nation of Opportunity: Building America’s 21st Century Workforce, was issued June, 2000.

From 1975-1982, Jim served in the U.S. Senate as Chief Legislative Assistant to New York Senator Jacob K. Javits, and later with Connecticut Senator Lowell P. Weicker.

Jim holds a Ph.D. in economics from New York’s Fordham University, where he was National Defense Education Act scholar. Before coming to Washington, DC, he was an assistant professor of economics at the Fordham University Graduate School of Business and at St. Francis College in New York City.

Jim is married and has two children.


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  • Ph.D. () Fordham University,