Rodney M. Hudson

Phone: (415) 591-7545 (415) 591-7545
Fax: (415) 591-7510


Rodney M. Hudson is an accomplished lawyer who regularly represents pharmaceutical, medical device and technology companies in trial and appellate courts throughout the country. Rodney handles complex, aggregated litigation, including mass torts, product liability, class actions and commercial litigation. He has represented clients in eight federal multidistrict litigation proceedings and six state coordinated proceedings, involving thousands of cases.

Rodney successfully guides nationwide legal strategy, manages teams of lawyers, serves on trial teams and argues significant motions before courts in various jurisdictions. He has secured many important victories for clients, including recently obtaining summary judgment based on federal law preemption of claims in a coordinated proceeding involving thousands of plaintiffs who alleged that the label on a prescription medicine was inadequate under state law. Rodney has prevailed on numerous other dispositive motions and has been a valued member of many trial teams that have secured verdicts in favor of his clients in coordinated proceedings and individual cases.

For more than a decade, Rodney has served regularly as lead, co-lead and liaison counsel in California statewide coordinated proceedings. He has appeared pro hac vice on behalf of clients in many jurisdictions around the country, including Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Oregon and Pennsylvania.

Rodney also serves as a strategic adviser to clients before litigation commences. Recently, he was successful in developing an effective legal strategy that resulted in a state agency suspending enforcement of its regulations on grounds that the state regulations were preempted by federal financial services laws, allowing the global client to continue doing business in the state. Rodney also advises clients on privacy and data protection matters, including data security breaches involving thousands of individuals, risk management, due diligence in mergers and acquisitions, regulatory compliance and strategies to minimize liability exposure.

Prior to joining Drinker Biddle, Rodney taught for two years at Georgetown University Law Center. While at Georgetown, he also worked closely with several organizations to draft federal legislation and comments to proposed federal regulations in the areas of privacy, data protection and health services.


Rodney regularly represents clients in complex litigation at trial and on appeal. He has secured dismissals of numerous cases on motion practice, including many summary judgment wins under the laws of various states. Rodney also has prevailed on Daubert and Kelly/Frye motions, resulting in the exclusion of expert testimony. He has won other significant motions in courts around the country. Rodney has successfully defended favorable trial court decisions on appeal, including summary judgments in favor of his clients.

His representative matters include:

  • Served in leadership roles as a member of multiple national counsel teams defending global manufacturers of pharmaceutical medicines and medical devices in federal multidistrict litigation involving thousands of cases pending throughout the country.
  • Represented clients as lead, co-lead and liaison defense counsel in multiple high-stakes California statewide coordinated proceedings.
  • Drafted, argued and won summary judgment motion based on federal law preemption in coordinated proceeding involving thousands of cases alleging that the label on a prescription medicine was inadequate under state law.
  • Advised global client on legal strategy based on federal law preemption, resulting in suspended enforcement of state regulations and allowing the client to continue doing business in the state.
  • Member of multiple trial teams in federal multidistrict litigation that secured defense verdicts in favor of his clients.
  • Member of trial team in the defense of claims involving recalled medical device.
  • Obtained numerous summary judgments in cases alleging state law failure to warn claims under the laws of many different states.
  • Member of trial team that obtained defense verdict in commercial dispute alleging trade libel, defamation and unfair business practices involving millions of dollars in alleged damages.
  • Defended Fortune 10 technology client in putative class action involving alleged defective notebook computers.
  • Represented California medical device manufacturer in putative class action, resulting in dismissal of putative class claims and individual claims of plaintiffs at the pleadings stage.
  • Obtained summary judgment in multiple cases alleging that a prescription product used off-label resulted in significant injuries to patients.
  • Secured favorable summary judgment rulings in numerous cases involving over-the-counter medications based on lack of scientific evidence on causation.
  • Obtained dismissal of numerous lawsuits brought by foreign plaintiffs who were residents of Taiwan, Canada, Germany and Peru but filed lawsuits in the United States against manufacturers located in the United States.
  • Managed numerous nationwide data security breaches involving thousands of consumers and employees.
Rodney advises clients on risk management, regulatory compliance and strategies to minimize liability exposure. He has counseled clients on pharmaceutical and technology products in all phases of the product life cycle. Rodney also has been called upon by clients to evaluate liability exposure of target companies as part of due diligence in mergers and acquisitions.
Rodney has spoken at national conferences on privacy. He has helped clients to develop an effective approach to managing the global patchwork of privacy and data security laws. Rodney has managed data security breaches involving thousands of individuals and has been recognized by pro bono clients for his work in the area of privacy.


Former California Executive Fellow
Former New York State Assembly Graduate Law Scholar
Former North Carolina Legislative Studies Scholar

Awards Methodology (


Bar Admissions

  • California


  • Georgetown University Law Center, LL.M., 2001
  • Syracuse University College of Law, J.D., 1996
  • Syracuse University, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, M.A., 1996
  • Campbell University, B.A., 1993, summa cum laude

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of California
  • California Supreme Court


  • American Bar Association
  • Defense Research Institute: The Voice of the Defense Bar