Jake Whitaker, who has joined Renne Public Policy Group (RPPG) as Manager of Grant Writing and Research, is an experienced grant writer and trained project manager who currently serves as President of the Woodland Joint Unified School District’s Board of Trustees. The youngest elected official in Yolo County, he joined the school board at age 25 and was reelected in 2020.
“Jake’s proven track record of securing millions of state and federal dollars for local agencies, coupled with his passion for public service, makes him a perfect fit to lead our firm’s grant writing offering,” said Dane Hutchings, RPPG Managing Director.
Partnering with dozens of cities, counties, community college districts, school districts, and nonprofits Jake has helped secure millions in state and federal resources. These include awards from the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, the Board of State and Community Corrections, the Economic Development Administration, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the California Community Foundation.
Jake began his grant writing career with the Yolo County District Attorney’s office, working to secure over $9 million in grant funding for Yolo County and local nonprofit organizations. He further honed his craft as a Project Manager with California Consulting, one of the largest grant writing firms in the state of California. He believes that successful grant writers must tell stories in a very direct way while addressing each proposal’s scoring criteria, targeting funding opportunities based on careful study of a client’s needs and building capacity to successfully seek competitive grants. “Successful grant advocacy isn’t done with a scattershot approach. Whether it’s seeking funding for infrastructure projects, wildfire mitigation, economic development, or public safety resources, success requires understanding the communities we represent and devising a plan of attack to best position our clients to compete for the right funding opportunities.”
Jake was drawn to RPPG’s strong philosophical belief in tailored client service and commitment to improving California communities. “Grant-writing is my calling,” said Whitaker. “It has opened up avenues for me to learn and to make a positive impact on my own community and communities throughout California—and it’s why I’m excited to join a firm whose values, drive, and commitment to local government matched my own.”