Robert O’Donnell is a private client advisor with extensive experience as a senior security and law enforcement leader with demonstrated expertise in coordinating and directing protective activities, operations and projects as well as criminal investigations. He has led diverse teams on complex threat assessments and security operations for high-profile individuals and their families as well as events, improving the nation’s readiness for a broad range of potential risks.
Bob joined Hillard Heintze after a lengthy career in the U.S. Secret Service that began in 1996. Bob left this distinguished organization as the appointed special agent in charge (SAIC) of its Dignitary Protective Division (DPD), where he evaluated the risks, threats and vulnerabilities that global political leaders, dignitaries and their families faced. In this role, Bob managed more than 1,500 personnel, created and executed policies, procedures and training to optimize executive protection capabilities, and conducted assessments of commercial and residential security risk. He secured 1,075 protective visits of foreign dignitaries and 420 trips with domestic protectees in 2017 alone, and his portfolio of high-profile event security includes the 2016 Presidential Campaign and a six-day United Nations General Assembly event involving more than 130 heads of state and their families.
Before serving in the agency’s Dignitary Protective Division, Bob was recruited to plan and direct the complex investigations of the Philadelphia Counterfeit Squad within the Secret Service’s Philadelphia field office. There, he identified and dismantled a sophisticated counterfeit manufacturing organization with international ties that had produced $80 million in counterfeit currency and operated for more than 15 years. For his efforts in transforming this squad into a high-performing team, O’Donnell received the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary’s Award for Excellence.
Bob earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology from Villanova University and is a graduate of the DHS Senior Executive Service (SES) Candidate Development Program and Excelsior College, where he obtained a professional certificate in national cybersecurity.