Betty Rhoades joined the HillVets Foundation in December of 2019 as the Executive Director. Betty lives in Washington, DC – just steps from the HillVets House! – with her husband, her rescued pit bull, Jack, and her “quarantine kitty,” Rex. Betty’s husband, Jason, was one of the original class of HillVets Fellows; he worked in Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick’s office and then moved on to achieve success in federal government, consulting, and private legal practice. Betty has seen firsthand how HillVets changes people’s lives for the better, and she and Jason have been enthusiastic supporters ever since.
Betty began her career with the Department of Veterans Affairs as a Presidential Management Fellow in 2005. Subsequently, she served as a Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) agent, SAH Coordinator, then Assistant Valuation Officer at the Atlanta Regional Loan Center. She was selected as the Chief of SAH in January of 2013. Betty’s dedication to Veterans led to record numbers of SAH grant approvals and also to her eventual promotion to Executive Management Officer (Chief of Staff) to the Deputy Under Secretary for Economic Opportunity in 2016. Betty came to HillVets from Jared Allen’s Homes for Wounded Warriors, where she served as Director of National Capital Relationships since 2017. She has been serving the military/veteran community for more than 15 years, during which time she has published numerous articles and presented at a variety of conventions and events.
Betty earned her Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of Tennessee College of Law in 2005 with a Concentration in Business Transactions. While in law school, she served on the staff of the Tennessee Law Review and received the National Association of Women Lawyers award and a Dean’s Citation for Excellence in Community Service. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Georgia, where she graduated cum laude, with honors, in 2002. She was also inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa Society.
Justin Brown is the Founder, of HillVets and is currently the CEO, of the Nimitz Group, a bipartisan consulting firm tackling the most difficult veteran and healthcare issues. He has nearly a decade of Veterans’ focused experience and advocacy, fighting on behalf of Veterans and their families to increase educational and employment opportunities, to expand access to benefits and healthcare, and to eliminate homelessness. He has worked for the VA, the VFW, the American Legion, and was a Staff Director for numerous Subcommittees for the House Veterans Affairs Committee.
Justin began his commitment to public service at the age of 17 when he enlisted in the United States Navy. There, he completed one deployment in support of Operation Southern Watch and two deployments in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Following Justin’s service, he attended the University of Utah, graduating with dual bachelor’s degrees in three years. He became active in the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) where he served as the youngest All-American District Commander and Department Chief of Staff in its history.
Jodi L. Harman
Director of Programs & Communications
Jodi Harman joined HillVets in January 2022 as the Director of Programs & Communications after previously serving for 3.5 years with another DC Veteran Support Organization. Through that previous position, she experienced firsthand the difficulties in trying to talk veteran’s issues when the person was not a military-connected. When a position with HillVets came available she jumped at the opportunity to help increase military-connected representation in public policymaking. Jodi’s 26 years as a Military Spouse has garnered a vast trove of knowledge of & experience with the military-connected community.
Although born and raised in southwestern Michigan, Jodi has called the greater DC Metropolitan area “home” since she was in middle school. She graduated from Seneca Valley High School in Germantown, MD and then earned her Bachelor Degree in psychology and vocal performance from St. Mary’s College of Maryland; her original goal was to be a music therapist.
Instead, Jodi pursued a career as an elementary school teacher for about 15 years, teaching primarily intermediate grades (3-5). Upon returning in 2011 from living overseas, she went back to school and earned a Master Degree in Library & Information Science (MLIS), specializing in archives & special collections.
Jodi is married to her high school sweetheart, LtCol John W. Harman, USMC, who will retire on 1 January 2023 after 28 years of active-duty service. They and their two sons have lived all over the world but have now put down permanent roots in Alexandria, VA.
Jodi loves all things Harry Potter, Star Wars, and Marvel and collects owls. She calls herself an “amateur grammarian”, loves to read historical fiction, and enjoys spending a day antiquing with her husband. Music lives in Harman’s soul: one can easily find her in a room by following the humming (likely a song from the 80s) to its source, where one is likely to find her dancing as well. Harman will take any opportunity to attend pretty much any kind of live event, from sports to music and everything in-between.