Ilisa Halpern Paul

President, District Policy Group


Recognized by The Hill as a Top Lobbyist for the past several years (2015-19), Ilisa Halpern Paul has deep experience and command of a wide range of issues, including health care financing and delivery system reform, the Medicare and Medicaid programs, the Affordable Care Act, digital health and telemedicine, home health, public health, behavioral health, and the federal budget and appropriations processes.  

Ilisa partners with for-profit companies and nonprofit organizations to develop strategies to advance their federal legislative, regulatory, programmatic, policy and business goals. She works with clients to establish and strengthen relationships with elected officials and federal agencies, develop and implement government relations and advocacy programs, and craft effective grassroots campaigns. To help advance clients’ goals, Ilisa also establishes coalitions, creates third-party stakeholder partnerships and engages in direct lobbying to affect the outcomes of appropriations measures, authorizing legislation, and federal regulatory actions. Clients value Ilisa’s strategic insight, creative ideas and ability to anticipate federal policy challenges and opportunities. Ilisa also helps to plan and facilitate policy meetings, including serving as the moderator or a speaker for conferences, roundtables and panel discussions.

Federal Government Advocacy

Ilisa draws on a 25-year record of success in leading clients through government relations strategic planning processes and in designing advocacy programs that meet internal organizational goals and advance and elevate policy issues on the national agenda. Clients rely on Ilisa’s encyclopedic knowledge of issues, including:

  • Health care financing and delivery system reform
  • Medicare and Medicaid payment policy
  • The Affordable Care Act (ACA)
  • Digital health and telemedicine
  • Value-based care
  • Home health and post-acute care
  • Public health and prevention
  • Federal policy and programs related to chronic disease, cancer, behavioral health and rural health
  • Federal budget and appropriations processes

Ilisa is particularly skilled in creating innovative messaging, tactics and materials in support of client policy goals; bringing traditional and nontraditional partners to the table in support of common goals; fostering relationships with members of Congress and their staff; and collaborating with administration and federal agency staff.

Government and Nonprofit Experience

Prior to her work as a government relations consultant, Ilisa served as director of federal government relations for the American Cancer Society and worked as director of federal affairs with the American Public Health Association (APHA). Ilisa began her Washington, D.C., career working on the policy staff of U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) following research assistant positions with Adeza Biomedical and the UCLA Pediatric Pain Program.

Personal Interests

When not engaged in influencing the outcome of federal policy, Ilisa enjoys spending as much time as possible with her husband, Scott, and their twin sons, especially hiking with their dog, Coco, taking in the boys’ various sporting activities, and cheering on UCLA and Penn State in both football and basketball. For the past several years, Ilisa has been learning to play the drums and has been practicing yoga.



Georgetown University

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
B.A. in English Literature

Insights & Events

Leadership & Community

Professional Associations

  • American Public Health Association
  • Women in Government Relations
  • Morning Consult, Op-Ed Contributor, 2014-16
  • Give an Hour — Executive Board Member, 2006-11
  • Hematology Oncology News & Issues — Editorial Advisory Board, 2004-11

Civic Activities

  • Board of Visitors, English Department, UCLA, 2018-present
  • Room Parent, The Lab School of Washington, 2016-present
  • Chair, Parent Steering Committee, DCJCC Preschool, 2012-13


  • The Hill — Top Lobbyists, 2015-19
  • American Association of Bioanalysts and National Independent Laboratory Association — William N. Reich Outstanding Achievement Award, 2009
  • Alpha Epsilon Phi Sorority — Young Alumni of the Year, 2007

Awards Methodology

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