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Whitney Barkley-Denney

Senior Policy Counsel

Whitney Barkley-Denney is legislative policy counsel, based in Durham, NC, where she works with state legislatures, attorneys general, and governors to fight predatory lending, exploitative student loan practices, and unscrupulous debt collectors.

Prior to CRL, Whitney worked on a range of election law issues as director of the Michigan Election Law Project and field director for Election Protection 2008, coordinating law students and attorneys to monitor polls for election irregularities during the 2008 presidential campaign. Whitney clerked for the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, serving in the Voter Protection Division, working to enforce the 1964 Voting Rights Act. She accepted a fellowship from Equal Justice Works/AmeriCorps to do foreclosure assistance work with the Mississippi Center for Justice, developing legal and policy expertise in foreclosure, consumer lending, and for-profit colleges. In 2013 and 2014, Whitney was appointed to the US Department of Education's Federal Rulemaking Committee on Gainful Employment and Programmatic Integrity, helping to set federal financial policy for students.

Whitney attended The College of Charleston, in Charleston (SC), and graduated from the University of Michigan Law School, being named 2009 Woman Law Student of the Year by the National Women Lawyers Association. When she's not at work, Whitney enjoys theater.


May 8, 2018
Only 12% of Marylanders think that U.S. Department of Education is doing a good job overseeing student loan servicers. WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) released a...
April 7, 2018 | By David Dayen | The Intercept
Student loan servicers have been continually cited for a litany of abuses. First, they neglected to inform borrowers about income-based repayment, under which borrowers pay a percentage of income...
April 2, 2018
A recent study by the Center for Responsible Lending finds nationally, for-profit colleges leave students with higher levels of debt and lower graduation rates, and often with no degree and no...
March 9, 2018
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Monday, March 12, the Federal Register will include an interpretation by the Department of Education that state-level student loan servicing laws are preempted by Federal law....