Rodney Whitlock, Ph.D. - McDermott+Consulting


Rodney is an accomplished health care advisor with more than two decades on the Hill where he specialized in rural health, the health care safety net and disability policy.

With more than 25 years of experience, Rodney possesses and offers clients the kind of knowledge that is uniquely available to those who have drafted and advanced legislation. He strategically guides clients through dense Medicare and Medicaid issues that have significant business impact.

While working in Congress, Rodney served as former US Representative Charlie Norwood’s (R-GA) health policy director where he managed the Patients’ Bill of Rights (S.1890), among other notable health policy matters.  Rodney then went on to serve Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) in the Senate. He first joined the Senate Finance Committee Staff as a health policy advisor to Chairman Grassley, and ultimately joined the Senator’s personal office as health policy director.  During his time in the Senate, Rodney served as the lead Republican staffer for Medicaid legislation from 2005 to 2010, and continued to serve Senator Grassley on all health-related issues through 2015. During his time in the Senate, Rodney helped staff Republicans in the Senate on such prominent and important legislation as the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006, CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2007 and 2009 and Affordable Care Act of 2010.

For the last 20 years, Rodney has been an adjunct faculty member at the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health’s Department of Health Policy and Management, and the Graduate School of Political Management’s Department of Legislative Affairs. Hundreds of students have taken Rodney’s courses and have gone on to pursue careers in Washington, DC.


  • University of Georgia, Ph.D.
  • Appalachian State University, M.A.
  • Roanoke College, B.A.

Representative Experience

  • Served as lead health policy staff for Representative Charlie Norwood (R-GA) and Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), as well as the Senate Finance Committee
  • Worked with multiple Administrations to advance health care priorities
  • Prominent speaker and thought leader on health care policy
  • Led responses to congressional inquiries and preparation efforts for congressional testimony
  • Led several federal strategic planning efforts focusing on developing federal advocacy efforts, issue priorities and policy analysis
  • Led efforts on building and maintaining relationship with members and staff to increase profiles and presence on Capitol Hill
  • Authoritative resource on health policy issues, including, Medicaid, Marketplace and Medicare policy