Michael E. Drobac

Sr. Advisor, Federal Public Affairs
McGuireWoods Consulting LLC

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  • The London School of Economics and Political Science, LLM, 2003
  • University of Oregon School of Law, JD, 2001
  • Stanford University, MA, 1996
  • Stanford University, BA, 1995

Drawing from deep experience in the private and public sector, Michael Drobac’s practice straddles the intersection of technology and public policy. He helps clients from the tech and telecommunications sectors develop messaging to define and execute outreach strategies, while advocating before Congress and federal agencies in support of policy objectives.

Michael’s experience working in the private sector — which gave him an understanding of key public policy issues facing the global Internet industry — combined with insights on legislative processes acquired during his years on Capitol Hill, afford him an ability to provide advice informed by both perspectives.  He was recognized by The Hill as one of the top lobbyists of 2016 and 2017.

He previously worked as head of government affairs for digital streaming giant Netflix. There Michael established, and served as the first director of, Netflix’s Washington, D.C., office, where he identified and developed the first official set of short- and long-term policy goals for the company on federal, state and international policy issues. He also advocated before Congress and other federal agencies in support of policy objectives including net neutrality, interconnection access, privacy, accessibility rules, taxation and copyright issues, and represented the company in market expansion in Canada and Latin America.

Before working at Netflix, Michael held senior roles in the government affairs departments of two other technology organizations: the Online Publishers Association and IAC/InterActiveCorp.

Prior to his tenure in the private sector, Michael served for nearly 10 years in the offices of three U.S. senators. He began his public policy career on Capitol Hill as a legislative assistant to former Sen. Gordon Smith (R-OR). After law school, he returned to Washington to work first as legislative counsel to former Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) and then as legislative director to former Sen. Norm Coleman (R-MN).

Michael also founded an Internet startup to address chronic disease through lead generation and gamification.

In the News

Michael Drobac
T: +1 202 857 2918F: +1 202 857 17372001 K Street N.W.
Suite 400
Washington, DC 20006-1040

Named "Top Lobbyist," ​The Hill, 2017​ 

Named "Top Lobbyist," ​The Hill​, 2016 

Listed as "Recommended," Government Relations - United States, The Legal 500, 2015

Quoted, "Drones' future hung up on unresolved fight over model aircraft," Politico Pro Transportation, July 6, 2018
Quoted, "Lawmakers Emphasize Need for 'Critical' FAA Remote ID Rule," Communications Daily, May 22, 2018
Panelist, "Autonomous Drones," SESAR U-Space Workshop, The Hague, The Netherlands, April 20, 2017
Panelist, "The New Remote Pilot Certificate," Premier Drone Law Seminar, San Francisco, CA, January 24, 2017
Panelist, "Drones at Scale - From Videography to Delivery," National Drone Show, Washington, D.C., December 8, 2016
Speaker, "Telecommunications and Technology in a new Administration," Digital Content Next (DCN) Legal and Legislative Day, New York, NY, November 17, 2016
Speaker, Drones Data X Conference, Dublin, Ireland, November 3, 2016
Panelist, "How Should Privacy Concerns Raised By Drones Be Addressed," Federal Trade Commission, Fall Technology Series: Drones, Washington, D.C., October 13, 2016
Moderator, "Drone Patents, IP Strategy & Regulations," InterDrone, The International Drone Conference and Exposition, Las Vegas, NV, September 7-9, 2016
Speaker, "Legal and Regulatory Considerations of Drones and UAVs," The Seminar Group, Las Vegas, NV, September 6, 2016
Speaker, "sUAV Coalition Needs, Challenges and the Way Forward," Civil and Commercial Drone Systems and Counter Drone Technologies Symposium, Washington, D.C., June 23-24, 2016
Speaker, Drones Data X 2016 Conference, San Francisco, CA, June 3, 2016
Speaker, Small Unmanned Systems Business Exposition 2016, San Francisco, CA, April 27-29, 2016
Speaker, "Panel Discussion on the Use and Regulation of Unmanned Aircraft Systems," National Association of Counties (NACo) Transportation Steering Committee Meeting, 2016 Legislative Conference, Washington, D.C., February 20, 2016
Speaker, Data X Conference, Westport, Ireland, November 7, 2015
Panelist, "Integrating Commercial Drones Into our National Airspace," InterDrone, The International Drone Conference and Exposition, Las Vegas, NV, September 9-11, 2015
Speaker, "The Internet Takes Flight: Commercial Drones and the Online Economy," Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee, Washington, D.C., August 3, 2015
Speaker, NASA UTM 2015: The Next Era of Aviation Convention, Moffett Field, CA, July 28-30, 2015
Interviewee, "A Game of Thrones," Aljazeera America’s Inside Story, July 2015
Panelist, "Prying Eyes in the Sky or News You Can Use? A Panel on Drones," Society of Professional Journalists DC Pro Chapter, Washington, D.C., June 17, 2015
Speaker, "U.S. Small UAV Coalition, Needs, Challenges and Way Ahead," Civil & Commercial Unmanned Aircraft Systems, San Diego, CA, June 16-17, 2015
Speaker, "Drones," Data X Conference, Santa Cruz, CA, May 1-3, 2015
Presenter, Small Unmanned Systems Business Exposition, San Francisco, CA, April 27-29, 2015
Panelist, "The Age of Drones and New Societal Concerns," California State University, Long Beach, CA, April 23, 2015
Presenter, "Unmanned Aerial Vehicles: Applications and Emergent Technologies," Northwestern University Transportation Center Business Advisory Council, Evanston, IL, April 20, 2015
Speaker, Real 2015: Where Sensors Meet the Makers, San Francisco, CA, February 25, 2015
Speaker and Organizer, The Small UAV Coalition’s Annual Meeting, Washington, D.C., January 20-21, 2015
Speaker and Organizer, "United States Policy and the Small UAV Coalition," Commercial UAV Show, London, England, October 2014
Speaker and Organizer, "Over the Top: Broadband Video’s Impact on Future TV," Broadband Breakfast Club, Washington, DC, July 22, 2013