Practice Focus Area: Enforcement and Litigation
Office: Washington, DC and Atlanta, GA
Time at Firm: 3 months
What is your favorite part about practicing healthcare law at McDermott?
I love the entrepreneurial culture of McDermott and the satisfaction that comes with finding creative ways to help clients solve problems. I also love the breadth and depth of the expertise and thought leadership at the Firm. I am continually amazed by the culture and capabilities at McDermott and I am excited to be a part of the team.
What is the biggest opportunity and greatest challenge facing clients in your area of focus today?
Uncertainty. The pandemic affected how health sector clients conduct business and has had wildly different financial consequences for the industries within the sector. It is unclear whether those economic changes will prove temporary or permanent. At the same time, there have been significant political changes at the federal level that will have policy, oversight, and enforcement consequences for the health sector. The clients who can successfully navigate this period of rapid political and economic change have an opportunity to accelerate out of the pandemic. We are uniquely equipped at McDermott to help clients capitalize on the uncertainty.
What kind of client work gets you most excited when it comes across your desk?
It is a tie between False Claims Act (FCA) and Administrative Procedure Act (APA) litigation. I view them as two sides of the same coin. The Government seeks to recover from the client under the FCA, while the client seeks relief from the Government under the APA. In both types of cases, fair and efficient outcomes are often reached by showing the Government that the client’s legal, factual, or policy position is the better one on the merits. The achievement of such outcomes on the merits requires credibility, substance and creativity.
Of course, there are bet-the-company (or even bet-the-industry) cases in which the client has no choice but to vindicate its rights through litigation with the Government. Those cases are equally rewarding at a firm like McDermott, which has the capability to go the distance.
What is the proudest moment of your career to date?
The proudest moment of my career was when I became the Acting General Counsel of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in 2017. My family has a long history of government service and values the contributions of all who serve. I was honored to continue the tradition.
If you were not a lawyer, what career would you pursue?
If I were not a lawyer then I would be an entrepreneur in the health sector. I get immense satisfaction from building and working with mission-driven, solution-oriented teams to serve the needs of individuals.