John P. Cahill
Chief of Staff and Special Counsel to Archbishop Timothy Cardinal Dolan and the Archdiocese of New York
As chief of staff and special counsel to Archbishop Timothy Cardinal Dolan, John P. Cahill coordinates the legal and communications response on behalf of the archdiocese regarding various legal and administrative matters, oversees the continuing energetic response and reform in the archdiocese in the face of sexual abuse crisis, advises the cardinal on various internal and external issues, and assists the cardinal in the overall administration of the archdiocese.
Cahill previously served as the senior counsel to the law firm of Norton Rose Fulbright where he concentrated on energy and environmental issues and was head of the firm’s climate change practice group. He was also the cofounder of the Pataki-Cahill Group, a strategic consulting firm focusing on the economic and policy implications of domestic energy needs.
Cahill has had a distinguished career in the public sector. He was appointed secretary and chief of staff to Governor George E. Pataki (the highest appointed position in the state) on February 27, 2002, and in May 2005 he was given the added responsibility of leading and coordinating the rebuilding of the World Trade Center site in lower Manhattan. He also served as senior policy advisor to Governor Pataki, where he advised the governor on a full range of critical issues including the coordination of the state’s response to the aftermath of the attacks of September 11, 2001.
Cahill first joined the Pataki administration as general counsel to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) in 1995. In 1997 he was appointed commissioner of the DEC, where he led the state agency responsible for enhancing and protecting the state’s natural resources. He also served as chairman of the Environmental Facilities Corporation, the public authority responsible for investing in public infrastructure related to environmental protection. Prior to joining the DEC, he was a partner in the New York City law firm of Plunkett & Jaffe, P.C., where his practice focused on environmental and municipal issues.
Cahill has been recognized by numerous organizations for his public service. He was a recipient of the 2004 Ellis Island Medal of Honor, which is presented to United States citizens for their outstanding contributions to America. The Adirondack Council awarded him with the 1999 Conservationist of the Year Award for his conservation efforts in the Adirondack Park. The National Audubon Society presented Cahill with its William B. Hoyt Environmental Excellence Award for his statewide conservation efforts. He was honored by the Historic Hudson Valley as the recipient of their Hero Award in November 2005 for his extensive work in preserving the historic heritage of the Hudson Valley.
Cahill currently serves on the board of trustees for the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, the Elizabeth Seton Pediatric Center, the Adirondack Council, the Open Space Institute, and he is the past president of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick in Westchester County. He is a member of the board of directors for TBS International, an international shipping company, and is also an adjunct professor at Pace University Law School, which awarded him a Juris Doctor degree in 1985 and a Master of Law in environmental law in 1992. He received his BA in economics from Fordham University.
He is an avid long-distance athlete, having completed several marathons and triathlons including the Lake Placid Ironman.