Katherine D. Brodie heads the Washington, D.C.
team of the firm’s established national higher education law and policy practice
. She serves as a team lead for the Duane Morris Education
industry group. She is one of a small number of attorneys in the United States with a daily practice devoted primarily to the needs of higher education institutions (non-profit, public and proprietary), higher education associations, higher education companies, and investors in higher education. She has a keen interest in supporting institutions and their partners to effectively lead and adapt to the fast pace of change in the U.S. education sector while maintaining high quality postsecondary educational services as measured in cost and student outcomes.
Katherine supports her clients with effective and cost-efficient regulatory advice geared toward identifying and reducing operational risk or facilitating acquisitions, lending and other transactions that promote institutional adaptation and innovation. When necessary, she advocates in defense of institutional interests in response to adverse federal, state or accrediting agency actions with the goal of limiting both institutional liability and the likelihood of reoccurrence through strengthened internal controls.
Ms. Brodie’s experience includes, among other areas of the law, U.S. Department of Education Title IV student financial aid regulations and accrediting agency standards including substantive change (ownership and governance, program, location and other changes), Title IX compliance and response, campus safety, marketing (federal and state misrepresentation prohibitions), distance education, foreign school and overseas operations including study abroad programs, affiliation and partnership agreements, and skills focused programs including coding boot camp and other short term courses. Her advice also includes compliance with U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Student Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP), U.S. Department of Veterans (VA)/U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) education benefit, Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) funding, state education grant program, and other federal and state regulations and programs relevant to institutional operations. Because the needs of institutions are so diverse, she is often aided in her work by subject matter experts in the firm’s other disciplines including tax, real estate, immigration, corporate, and trial.
She is a frequent speaker and writer on higher education topics and trends and, as a registered federal lobbyist, advocates before the U.S. Congress and U.S. Department of Education on higher education policy reform proposals.
practices in the area of education law
. Ms. Gill’s practice focuses on issues related to federal and state higher education law from both a policy and regulatory compliance perspective. Her experience and advice includes issues surrounding compliance with the federal regulatory process, particularly as related to the Title IV student financial aid programs authorized by the Higher Education Act and administered by the U.S. Department of Education. Specifically, Ms. Gill counsels institutions regarding institutional, student and program Title IV eligibility requirements, including Title IV program review and audit response and resolution, Title IX (sexual harassment) and Clery Act (campus safety) compliance, Annual Safety Reports, EEOC complaints, change of ownership questions and approvals, incentive compensation, licensing requirements, state authorization (on-ground and distance education), DOD/VA educational benefit regulations, gainful employment compliance, and borrower defense to repayment issues. She also advises schools regarding consumer protection and disclosure regulations and trends, and a variety of other legal and regulatory issues impacting educational institutions, including marketing and advertising practices, and third party servicer relationships. She assists clients in providing formal responses to rulemaking and draft legislation. As a former staffer on Capitol Hill and registered lobbyist, Ms. Gill brings an insiders perspective to the federal legislative process. She has a strong command of the intersection between policy and regulations. She works with clients to develop advocacy and engagement strategies for issues related to higher education and more specifically the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act. She is a speaker at higher education conferences on emerging and on-going regulatory issues impacting postsecondary educational institutions.
Brian Newman is currently the principal of Abington Strategies, LLC, a government and public affairs firm. In this capacity, he serves as State Relations Advisor to the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS) and annually tracks over 300 state bills of interest to AACS member schools.
From 1997 to 2013, Brian was a member of the Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities’ (APSCU) government relations department. As APSCU’s Director of State Affairs, Brian established a state government relations program for an association that was previously federally focused. He resides with his family in Arlington, Virginia and holds a Bachelor’s degree from Emory University and a Master’s degree in Political Management from The George Washington University.
Neal Heller is currently the CEO and President of the Hollywood Institute of Beauty Careers, located in Hollywood, Florida. Neal holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Miami and his Juris Doctorate from Nova Southeastern University. In his current role, Neal oversees the day-to-day operations, compliance and development of three campuses; including state licensure and NACCAS accreditation. Prior to Hollywood Institute of Beauty Careers, Neal was co-founder, CEO and President of the Florida College of Natural Health, where he successful led the school to become the largest of its kind in the South Eastern United States. He also served as past-President of the Florida Association of Post-Secondary Schools and Colleges and as an Executive Board member for four years.
Brooke Baran has spent her career in Communications, Marketing, Education and Development and has vast experience leading executive teams and being a business connector.
She was trained in the rigors, and fast pace of public relations at the State Capitol in Hartford, CT where she served as a press secretary for the President Pro Tempore. In this role she polished and sharpened her PR skills to become top notch. She understands how to shape a story so there is always a hook that assists with placement and pickups by reporters and media outlets; she can sell the narrative of her clients; she is a connection cultivator and creates long-lasting relationships with her clients and reporters alike.
Brooke has run marketing and communications for one of the largest, privately owned post-secondary institutions in the Country, where she oversaw a marketing budget of $8 million, led campaigns for 5 separate brands, managed a sales team of 20 individuals and all aspects of marketing from traditional television, radio and print. She oversaw the shift to digital marketing and was responsible for website creation, SEO, digital leads, social media and email campaigns. It is here that Brooke learned to have data and analytics be the driving force behind all campaign decisions. She learned firsthand how to analyze leads to sales units and how to make fast, well timed marketing decisions.
Staying true to her roots Brooke also managed all communications for the schools (internal & external) as she continued to enhance her public relations skills. She has gone on to be responsible for marketing and public relations in other for-profit school groups, the Vice President of Education, and has also spent time in the non-profit space enhancing messaging and communications.
Brooke is a proud Board Member for Healing Therapies Through Sharing.
With approximately 15 years lobbying before the United States Congress, TC Wolfe has built his career advocating for good public policy and a healthy and fair federal regulatory environment. His commitment to trust and honesty in his career has enabled many relationships to develop over the years with Members of Congress, Congressional Staff and executive branch political appointees and bureaucrats. TC brings a hard work ethic coupled with a good gut instinct and a robust knowledge of both the legislative and political processes, allowing him to better serve his clients and partners.
TC’s area of expertise is in primary, secondary and post-secondary education; he has also developed extensive knowledge in healthcare, information technology, municipal government, immigration reform, veterans’ affairs, mental health initiatives and the Congressional appropriations process.
Wolfe began his career in public policy as a Legislative Aide and Committee Secretary, learning the process of lawmaking and governing while also gaining understanding of each unique factor outside of the legislative process which has positive or negative impacts: third parties, think tanks, the media and social media, donors, constituents and political party leadership.
In Washington, Wolfe has worked to improve the regulatory environment and rulemaking processes while representing numerous quality institutions of higher education. Student success, accountability to the taxpayers, communities and students remain a critical driving force in legislative ideas and debate. In leadership roles in government relations for Keiser University and Southeastern College, he effectively led grassroots and mobilization efforts throughout the tumultuous regulatory years of the Obama Administration. He served on multiple operating subcommittee on the Career College Association (CCA) and fought back against unfair legislation and regulatory rules including changes to 90/10, Gainful Employment (GE), Borrower’s Defense to Repayment. As a State Captain in Florida for CCA, he and others on the team produced a near-united Congressional Delegation from Florida over the years fighting against GE.
Wolfe resides in Washington, DC and maintains an office in Miami, FL and is a proud graduate of The Ohio State University.
Dana Persico is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Nail Skin & Hair Institute. Dana has committed her career to raise the bar on beauty industry standards and, through her avant-garde educational approach, thousands of Estheticians, Nail Technicians, Waxers, and Makeup Artists, Hair Stylists and Permanent Makeup Artists have attained great success within the multi-billion dollar beauty and medical spa industry.
Michael is the President of American Institute of Beauty, Inc. with 2 campus locations in Pinellas County, Florida. He brings over 25 years in the Beauty Industry from the Beauty Supply Distribution arena. Additional, he is proud to say that he is a former Marine and Banker with a special love for Business Finance.
Alex Ricci joined the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and Labor in 2014. In his role as a Professional Staff Member, Alex specializes in higher education policy with a specific focus on student aid and helping students access and complete postsecondary education with the skills they need for lifelong success.
John Kline represented Minnesota's 2nd congressional district as a member of the United States House of Representatives from 2003 to 2017. During his tenure, he served as the Chair of the House Education and Workforce Committee. Kline also served on the Armed Services Committee.
Before his election to Congress, Kline was a 25-year career commissioned officer in the United States Marine Corps, where he was a senior military aide to Presidents Carter and Reagan. During his military career, Kline was a Naval Aviator who served as a helicopter pilot in Vietnam, commanded all Marine aviation forces in Operation Restore Hope in Somalia, flew "Marine One," the Presidential helicopter, in HMX-1, and served as Program Development Officer at Headquarters Marine Corps. He received numerous medals and commendations, including the Defense Superior Service Medal, four awards of the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal, three awards of the Vietnam Service Medal, the Vietnam Campaign Medal, and the Presidential Service Badge. Kline retired from the Marine Corps as a colonel.
John Kline retired from Congress at the end of his term in January 2017.
Katherine Valle is the lead policy advisor on higher education for the Democratic staff of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and Labor. Prior to her work in Congress, Katherine was a senior research analyst at the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) and the associate director of policy research at the U.S. Department of Education’s Advisory Committee on Student Financial Assistance. Aside from her domestic experience, Katherine worked in the Dominican Republic where, through her Peace Corps service, advised the Ministry of Education and Office of the First Lady on education technology policy and partnered with non-governmental organizations to develop a national literacy program. Originally from Peru, Katherine was raised in Miami, Florida and received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and her graduate degrees from the University of Michigan. She is also a proud member of Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority, the first Latina sorority in the nation.
Charles Riser has been in the beauty industry since shortly after leaving college and is currently serving on the Maryland State Board of Cosmetology having been appointed by Governor Larry Hogan and Kelly M. Schulz, Secretary of Labor, Licensing, & Regulation. In 2007 he was named the Spirit of TSA, one of the industry’s highest honors, for his outstanding contribution to the growth and professionalism of the beauty industry. In addition, in 2008 he won the Technology Excellence Award for his salon’s implementation of technology into the beauty industry. He has helped develop business and growth seminars for Paul Mitchell Schools and remains a lead consultant for Paul Mitchell School in Operations and Government Relations.
He was also one of the twelve owner/consultants traveling the country to support and train other Paul Mitchell Schools and continues to work closely with the franchise to develop new systems and procedures. He was presented with the 2017 Andrew Gomez Compassionate Service Award along with Cancer Schmancer founder and actress Fran Dresher at Paul Mitchell Schools 14th annual FUNraising Gala in Hollywood, California “in recognition of his selfless, compassionate service and tireless dedication.” Charles currently is a board member of the Andrew Gomez Dream Foundation.
Congresswoman Virginia Foxx represents North Carolina’s 5th District in the United States House of Representatives. Throughout her time in Congress, Foxx has established herself as a champion of conservative values and has helped lead the national movements to reduce federal government spending and increase government oversight and accountability.
She currently serves as the Republican Leader of the House Committee on Education and Labor. From 2013 to 2016, she served as Secretary of the House Republican Conference.
As the Chairwoman of the House Subcommittee on Higher Education, Foxx led efforts to modernize and reform the nation’s workforce development system. In 2014, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which provided a long overdue reform of the Workforce Investment Act, was signed into law. WIOA, a bipartisan, bicameral compromise between the Foxx-authored SKILLS Act (H.R. 803) and the Workforce Investment Act of 2013 (S. 1356), streamlines and improves existing federal workforce development programs and fosters a modern workforce that American businesses can rely on to compete.
Prior to serving on Capitol Hill, Foxx spent 10 years in the North Carolina Senate where she successfully sponsored several statewide and local bills and consistently voted against tax increases and for legislation that would make governments more efficient and less wasteful.
Dr. Foxx is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she received her A.B. degree in English and M.A.C.T. in Sociology. She earned her Ed.D. in Curriculum and Teaching/Higher Education from UNC-Greensboro.
Dr. Foxx began her career as a secretary and research assistant at UNC-Chapel Hill. She taught at Caldwell Community College, was a sociology instructor at Appalachian State University and held several administrative positions at ASU, including Assistant Dean of the General College. Dr. Foxx also served as Deputy Secretary for Management in the N.C. Department of Administration for Governor Jim Martin. Prior to her election to the Senate in 1994, she served as President and later a consultant at Mayland Community College from 1987-1994.
Representative Foxx has been active in civic and business affairs, serving on many state and national committees. She served on the Executive Committee of North Carolina Citizens for Business and Industry and was elected to three four-year terms on the Watauga County Board of Education. She was confirmed by the United States Senate for a Presidential appointment to the National Advisory Council for Women's Educational Programs. She also served on the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation Advisory Panel. Other current or former service on boards includes the Board of Directors of the John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy, Board of Directors of the N.C. Center for Public Research, the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Visitors, National Conference of State Legislatures' Blue Ribbon Advisory Panel on Child Care, Charter Member of the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History and the Foscoe-Grandfather Community Center Board.
Dr. Foxx is a member of the American Legion Auxiliary, the world’s largest women’s patriotic service organization. Her support for America’s veterans and active-duty military is characterized by her introduction of the HERO Act, legislation that extends IRA benefits for troops serving in combat zones. She has also supported bills that expand veterans’ disability compensation and that significantly increased overall Veterans Affairs funding. Dr. Foxx has also voted in favor of honoring our nation’s fallen by prohibiting demonstrations at military funerals held at national cemeteries.
Dr. Foxx is the recipient of several state and national awards. Among those awards are the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Spirit of Enterprise Award, the Family Research Council’s True Blue Award and the Alan Keith-Lucas Friend of Children Award, the highest honor granted by the North Carolina Child Care Association. She is a former Rotarian.
At Mayland Community College, Dr. Foxx implemented several nationally recognized programs including a curriculum evaluation program which has been adopted by major universities. In another major success, she raised over $1 million in private funds for an on-campus, state-of-the-art child development center built by prison inmates. At ASU she implemented a model orientation/academic advising program which is still in existence.
Virginia Foxx is married to Tom Foxx. Prior to her entering Congress, the couple owned a nursery business in Watauga County. Dr. Foxx is a lay leader in her church and her hobbies are reading, gardening and being a grandparent to two.
John’s diverse background consists of a 10-year stint at two Big 4 firms where he worked exclusively with middle market companies in many different industries and has been delivering results for his schools since he entered the beauty and wellness education business in 1997. As a current partner in The Paul Mitchell Schools located in Dallas, San Antonio, Arlington, Ardmore, Roanoke, Denver and Miami, he has consistently shown strong leadership skills. John looks forward to exhibiting his servant leadership methods while serving on the AACS Board.
Michael Stratford is an education reporter for POLITICO Pro. He most recently covered federal higher education policy and student loans at Inside Higher Ed, with previous bylines at The Associated Press, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine. Stratford grew up in Belmont, Mass. and graduated from Cornell University, where he was managing editor of The Cornell Daily Sun.