Born: 1946
Washington, D.C.

Interviews conducted by
Erin Louise Palmer, Esq.

James W. Dyke, Jr., Esq.


Mr. Dyke is a Partner at the law firm of McGuire Woods LLP. His broad practice covers legislative, education, and governmental relations. He previously served as Virginia’s Secretary of Education under former Virginia Gov. L. Douglas Wilder, and as Domestic Policy Advisor to Former Vice President Walter Mondale.

Mr Dyke has established a significant regional presence in the business, education and government arenas. He is well respected for his experience in working with all component of the community and with both political parties, having been appointed to numerous important positions by Democrats and Republicans. He has established a network of contacts that assist him in handling complex and sensitive matters throughout Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia.

His network includes numerous local, state and federal officials, educators and business leaders, especially in the Washington region.e is an active leader in the Northern Virginia business community having served as chairman of the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce; chairman of the Northern Virginia Business Roundtable; President of the Northern Virginia Community College Educational Foundation; and chairman of the Emerging Business Forum, and organization focused on enhancing minority and women entrepreneurs’ businesses.

He served as Chairman of the Greater Washington Board of Trade for 2010. The Board of Trade is the largest regional business organization in the Washington, D.C. area, advocating for the business community in Virginia, the District of Columbia and Maryland. During his term, he was Co-Chair of the Joint WMATA Governance Review Task Force.

He is a member of the Board of Directors for Washington Gas Holding where he serves on the Governance and Human Resources Committees as well as the Governor’s appointee to the Board of Directors for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA/Metro) and the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission.

He was included in the Washingtonian magazine’s list of “150 Most Powerful People” in the Washington region. He was a finalist for the Washington Business Journal’s “Top Washington Lawyers in State and Local Lobbying.” He was named by Washington Business Journal as the “Best Networker” in the region and as a Minority Business Leader Honoree.

He also win the J. Michael Brown award from DuPont for his accomplishments in diversity, recruiting and mentoring in the legal profession. In addition, he has received numerous awards and certifications related to education, transportation, government and community service.

He has served or is serving on various commissions and committees including: the State Council of Higher Education in Virginia (SCHEV); the Commission of Virginia’s State and Local Tax Structure for the 21st Century; the Board of Directors of the Maryland Chamber of Commerce; the Governor’s Commission of Economic Development and Job Creation (VA); the Governor’s Independent Bipartisan Advisory Commission of Redistricting (VA); the Richmond Mayor’s Task Force on Efficiency and Excellence for the Richmond Public Schools as its C0-Chair; the Prince George’s County Management Oversight Panel as Senior Consultant; as a member of Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker’s Transition Committee, and the Board Trustees of the University of the District of Columbia as a member and its chairman.

He is a frequent speaker on educational, political, and legal issues and has written numerous op ed articles for a range of media outlets and been quoted or mentioned in countless articles and appeared in numerous radio and television programs addressing regional and national issues.

Howard University School of Law, Washington, D.C., J.D., cum laude, 1971 (graduated first in class)
Editor in Chief, Howard Law Journal
Howard University,  Washington, D.C., B.A., 1968
Honorary Doctor of Laws, University of Richmond, 1993
Honorary Doctor of Laws, Virginia State University, 1991
Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters, St. Paul’s College, 1990
Honorary Doctor of Laws,  Randolph Macon College, 2009
Honorary Associate of Humane Letters, Northern Virginia Community College, 2008

Secretary of Education, Commonwealth of Virginia, 1990-1993
Domestic Policy Advisor to U.S. Vice President Walter F. Mondale, 1977-1981
Partner, Sidley & Austin, 1981-1987
Partner, Hunton & Williams, 1987-1990
Adjunct Professor, University of Virginia Law School, 1976-1990
Adjunct Professor, Howard University School of Law, 1974-1976
Law Clerk, the Hon. Spottswood W. Robinson III, U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit, 1971-1972

Classes Taught
Legal Writing and Business Units, Howard University School of Law, 1974-1976
Elected School Boards, Virginia Municipal League, November 1993
College Desegregation (Fordice), National Organization of Legal Problems in Education, November 1994
Legal Issues in Student Conduct, Virginia Association of Secondary Principals, June 1996
School Safety Issues, Virginia Association of School Superintendents, 1999
Government, Politics and the Law, University of Virginia Law School, 1976-1990

Speaking Engagements
Mr Dyke has made hundreds of speeches nationally and locally on education, business, government and political issues, and has appeared on numerous television and radio programs and news interviews. He has also been quoted extensively in a wide range of newspapers.

Directorships and Appointments
Appointed to Serve on Higher Education Transition Group by Governor-elect Martin O’Malley and Lieutenant Governor-elect Anthony Brown of Maryland
Corporate Board of Directors, Washington Gas Light Company, 2003- Present
Member, Board of Directors, Agnes and Eugene Meyer Foundation
Corporate Board of Directors, American Type Culture Collection, 2004-2006
Chairman, Board of Trustees, University of District of Columbia, 2004-2009
Member, Board of Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA)
Member, Board of the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission
Member, Board of Directors and Executive Committee, Greater Washington Board of Trade
Member, Governor Bob McDonnell’s Independent Bipartisan Advisory Commission on Redistricting, 2011
Member, Governor Bob McDonnell’s Commission on Economic Development and Job Creation, 2010
Chairman, Board of Directors of the Virginia Center for Innovative Technology, 1992-1994
Member, Board of Directors, Maryland Chamber of Commerce
Member, Legislative Committee of the Maryland Chamber of Commerce (invitation only)
Member, Virginia State Board of Education, 1985-1990
Member, State Council of Higher Education in Virginia (SCHEV), 2004-2012
Chairman, Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce, 1999-2000
Chairman, Northern Virginia Community College Educational Foundation, 200-2002
Chair, Northern Virginia Business Roundtable, 2001-2004
Member, Commission to Study Virginia’s State and Local Tax Structure for the 21st Century
Virginia Commission on Educational Infrastructure, 1995-2000
Member, Commission on Virginia Higher Education in the 21st Century
Southern Education Foundation, Chair, Panel on Desegregation in Higher Education, 1994-2004
Virginia’s Lay Member, Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, 2001-2003
Chairman, Metropolitan Council of Chambers of Commerce, 1999-2000
Member, Governor Gilmore’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Higher Education, 1998-2000
Commonwealth of Virginia, Joint Commission on Technology and Science
Advisory Committee on the Year 2000
Advisory committee on Technology-Based Economic Growth in Virginia

District of Columbia 1972
Virginia 1991
U.S. Supreme Court

Courtesy of the Dyke Family