Hrant joined DPC in April 2011 and has served as the CEO ever since. In this capacity, Hrant directs and oversees all day-to-day operations of the organization including coordinating Board of Directors activities, fundraising, public relations and lobbying.
As the primary spokesperson for the organization and lead advocate for DPC, Hrant has spearheaded numerous successful advocacy efforts, including securing passage of legislation to provide dialysis patients with access to Medicare Advantage; the first disease-specific Accountable Care Organization (ACO); a two-year delay to dialysis funding cuts at the federal level, followed by another three-year adjustment to reimbursement to help stabilize the system; Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) protections for dialysis patients in the health insurance exchanges; removal of prior authorization requirements for dialysis patients with medication coverage in Medicare Part D; and legislative and regulatory victories in more than two dozen states. Hrant also successfully sued the federal government to protect patient access to charitable assistance as the lead plaintiff in DPC v. Burwell.
Formerly the Director of Health Policy for the United Way Worldwide, Hrant brings extensive expertise in formulating and advancing effective health care policies at the national and state levels. Hrant previously served as Director of Congressional and State Relations for the American Pharmacists Association and as Director of Field and State Operations for the American Psychological Association, where he spearheaded a number of successful national advocacy initiatives and grassroots campaigns. He also previously worked at the Armenian Assembly of America, where he led the organization’s membership, grassroots and public relations activities. Hrant received his Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from Catholic University Columbus School of Law as well as his Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Global Health Law from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Hannah provides executive support and serves as the first point of contact with the DPC members, volunteer advocates, policymakers, and the public at large. She supports business development and fundraising efforts, works to secure meetings with policymakers and potential funders, and helps plan and organize meetings and events. In her previous position, Hannah worked as a project coordinator in global health development, helping to implement projects with USAID and other government aid agencies. She also served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Uganda, where she wrote, managed, and reported on a PEPFAR grant to help address the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the country.
Her educational background is in business administration and marketing, having received her Bachelor’s from the Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado.
Rhonda Clark, who has worked with DPC since June of 2016, spearheads DPC’s grassroots efforts to help elevate the patient voice of 31 million Americans with Chronic Kidney Disease and the half-million patients with kidney failure. Rhonda manages DPC’s grassroots program by organizing and mobilizing DPC’s membership and volunteer advocates, developing and recruiting new patient advocates, assisting in the planning and execution of DPC’s Annual Advocacy Day, and hosting Patient Ambassador training calls.
Kelly Goss oversees DPC’s state advocacy efforts throughout the western half of the US. In her day-to-day role, Kelly engages with elected officials and their staff, kidney care partners, patients and others to educate them about dialysis issues, advocate on policy issues that protect patients’ access to quality care and help elevate the voice of dialysis patients in order to improve their quality of life. She also works to broaden and strengthen DPC’s membership.
Kelly is an experienced legal policy and grassroots advocate who has spent two decades working on a variety of public policy and strategic communication issues. She began her career working in Congress in the office of U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein and has worked as an associate for public affairs consultancy Dewey Square Group, a lobbyist in the national ACLU legislative office and a consumer protection campaign coordinator in the Executive Bureau of the Office of Massachusetts Attorney General. Prior to joining DPC, Kelly worked for two global health economic outcomes research consultancies managing payor relations and market research outreach with healthcare and life science industry stakeholders.
Throughout her career, Kelly has provided non-profit advocacy organizations and clients with operational guidance and helped them achieve organizational objectives. She is a passionate and energetic advocate, particularly for constituencies that are traditionally underrepresented in the policy-making process.
Kelly received a dual bachelor degree (B.A.) in Economics and Urban Studies and Planning from the University of California, San Diego, a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from Suffolk University Law School in Boston, MA, and Master of Laws (LL.M). in European Law from Lund University in Sweden.
Megan Hashbarger manages and coordinates all efforts between DPC and Members of Congress and their staff. Prior to coming to DPC, she served as the Legislative Director for Congressman Jim Renacci (OH-16), a Member of the House Ways and Means Committee. In this role, she managed the legislative office for the Congressman and personally handled healthcare, trade, transportation, defense, foreign affairs, and veterans. In the healthcare field, she assisted the Congressman in getting his Readmissions bill passed, drafting quality ratings legislation, pushing back on payment cuts from CMS, and finding common sense reforms to ACA. Previously, she served as a Senior Legislative Assistant for Congressman Adrian Smith (NE-03), also as a Member of the House Ways and Means Committee as well as a Member of the Health Subcommittee. In this role, she worked on many rural health priorities including relieving burdensome regulations impacting Critical Access Hospitals.
Prior to working on Capitol Hill, Megan was a political appointee for the Bush Administration serving in the Office of the Secretary at the U.S. Department of Transportation. While there, she received the Secretary’s Award for her efforts following the I-35W bridge collapse in Minnesota. Prior to that, she was the Assistant to the Chief Counsel at the Republican National Committee. Megan graduated from Union College in Schenectady, NY and is originally from Augusta, GA.
Prior to joining Dialysis Patient Citizens, Elizabeth served as Chief Policy Officer for the Gift of Hope Organ & Tissue Donor Network (Itasca, IL) where she led coalition partnerships to pass state legislation permitting 16 and 17-year-olds to join the State of Illinois Organ & Tissue Donor Registry and the Living Organ Donor Protection Act. She also led the operations of the Illinois Transplant Fund, a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to providing access to organ transplants for disenfranchised community members of Illinois and NW Indiana.
Elizabeth served as an executive in the hospital provider and hospital association communities in Illinois. She spearheaded state legislation that created the Free Standing Emergency Center provider category, a fairer Hospital Provider Assessment program and led negotiations with the City of Chicago that granted hospitals an improved onboarding schedule with newly enacted nonprofit organization water rates. She served as Vice President of Government relations for the Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council (Chicago, IL) and Associate Vice President for External Affairs and President of the Midwest Health Foundation for Adventist Midwest Health (Hinsdale, IL), now part of Amita Health.
Elizabeth holds a Master of Science degree in communications from Northwestern University (Evanston, IL) and is an alumna of Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management and the Indiana University Lily Family School of Philanthropy (Indianapolis, IN). A volunteer for Top Box Foods (Chicago, IL), Elizabeth also serves on the Dean’s Advisory Board of Midwestern University’s Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine (Downers Grove, IL) and is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, Associate of Fundraising Professionals and the Robert Wood Johnson Leadership Network.
Kathi comes to DPC with experience in developing patient-centered resources and providing educational experiences for kidney patients and dialysis staff. In her previous position as the Director of Patient Services at The Renal Network, she introduced patient empowerment programs, patient leadership positions and patient-centered care models. She developed and conducted training programs for patients and staff, including The Patient Whisperer, a patient/staff communication program which was presented around the country. In addition, she developed peer support training programs and health care team model agreements as well as collaborated with other organizations on home dialysis issues and pediatric resources. She also worked with patients and staff to resolve grievances and to address issues of involuntary discharge and barriers to placement. Her doctoral dissertation at Vanderbilt University was on The Effects of Instructional Strategies on Memory Retention in End-Stage Renal Disease Patients.
Dr. Niccum also teaches Gerontology college courses in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). She also has been the Human Services Department Chair of Ivy Tech Community College, a Behavioral Clinician in the Child Development Center of Riley Children’s Hospital, and has provided child and family counseling.
Hillary oversees and executes the strategy for the DPC Education Center’s numerous communications channels. Having served patients and healthcare professionals prior to starting at DPC, she worked as the Communications and Publications Manager for the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association. There she partnered with volunteer leaders, advocated for clinical team care, and managed an assortment of communications channels.
Her educational background is in communications and technology, having received her Master’s degree at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and her Bachelor’s at Elon University.
Jackson Williams came to DPC after a three-year stint at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the last year of which was spent in the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation. Previously he was a health services researcher in the AARP Public Policy Institute and a lobbyist on health policy issues for three non-profit associations. In his spare time he has conducted research focusing on the intersection between medical liability and payment incentives in contributing to utilization, analyzing cost drivers and cost containment proposals, and the effects of regional subcultures on health care phenomena.
He is a graduate of the University of Illinois (B.A.), Loyola University of Chicago (J.D.), and Governors State University (M.P.A.). He has taught courses in political science and law at the University of Illinois at Chicago, IIT-Kent College of Law, and Pennsylvania State University, Harrisburg.