Carol McDaid, Principal

Carol McDaid serves as Principal at Capitol Decisions, Inc. Capitol Decisions has a special expertise in addiction and mental health policy.  For over two decades, Ms. McDaid has worked with leading drug and alcohol treatment centers, addiction physicians, prevention and consumer organizations and mental health consumer and provider organizations to refine public policy addressing addiction and mental health. 

With over 25 years of Federal legislative experience in Washington, Ms. McDaid provides clients with public affairs consulting on issues that span the breadth of health care, including behavioral health, Medicare, Medicaid, and private sector reimbursement issues.
Ms. McDaid served as a strategist and advisor to the Parity NOW Coalition, which was influential in passage of the 2008 “Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act.”  This landmark legislation requires insurers to treat addiction, mental, and physical health problems equally.

The Parity NOW Coalition became a model for also successfully advocating for inclusion of addiction and mental health benefits in health-care reform legislation.  Addiction and mental health provider and consumer organizations made up the coalition as well as the American Hospital Association, American Medical Association and other partners.  McDaid served as an advisor and strategist to this Coalition during the health care reform debate in Congress.  Capitol Decisions also served as consultants to the Coalition to Stop Opioid Overdose (CSOO) who were part of the successful effort to pass the bi-partisan Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act in 2016.

To make a difference at the local level, in 2004, Ms. McDaid co-founded the McShin Foundation in Richmond, Virginia with her husband, John Shinholser.  McShin is the leading non-profit, full-service recovery community organization committed to serving individuals and families in and seeking recovery from addiction in the State of Virginia.  McShin offers peer-to-peer recovery support services that include recovery coaching/mentoring and housing.

Because Ms. McDaid personally struggled with addiction, she understands the challenges, political and personal, of dealing with alcohol and drug issues.  She is a founding Board Member of Faces and Voices of Recovery and currently serves on the Board of Young People in Recovery.  In 2007, she received the Johnson Institute’s America Honors Recovery Award.

Before coming to CDI, Ms. McDaid worked for seven years as Senior Vice President at R. Duffy Wall & Associates, a Washington, D.C.-based government relations consulting firm. There she managed the health-care practice and represented hospitals, providers, insurers, pharmaceutical manufacturers, and cancer research interests.  She has also been a senior Washington representative at the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and a manager in the Employee Benefit Services Group of PriceWaterhouseCoopers Washington National Tax Service.

A North Carolina native, Carol McDaid graduated from Emory University in Atlanta, Ga., where she majored in Political Science.  The focus of her graduate work was in legislative affairs at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.