Cornelius was born into the Rhodes family, which is very wealthy and influential since his father started Dolen Rhodes department store. He eventually married a woman named Elizabeth with whom he had two children, a son, Connor, and a daughter, Claire. Ten years after the birth of their son, his wife seemingly threw herself off the roof of their home. His son later implies that there was more to the story, however.
He meets with his son after he left the family a long time ago. He tries to convince Connor to go back to the family business and to put everything that happened behind them. However, Connor doesn't buy into it.
One of his employees and old family friend is rushed to the Hospital after being impaled by a chandelier. His son, Connor is attending to the patient. He goes up to Cornelius and Claire to ask if Russell's medical bills will be covered as they may be quite expensive. Claire immediately says yes. However, she is shocked when her father refuses to cover medical bills as he says they would have to do it for everyone else if something were to happen, which would mean losing a lot of money. Later on, he tries to force his son away from the case by going up to Sharon. Since his talk with Sharon didn't work, he took his request up to the administration board. Who, after a while, have a representative show up at Sharon's office. She stands her ground and defends Connor. There is nothing Cornelius can do to step his son down from the case. When the surgery Connor performs is a success, he tells him he always believed in him.
He donates millions of dollars to the Hospital in order to open the Elizabeth Rhodes Psychiatric Ward in honor of his late wife. The donation is seen by some as his effort to take the spotlight from his son, since he works there, and being the center of attention. To the end of the Hospital, at the inauguration of the ward he makes a speech honoring his wife. Connor praises him for his speech, adding that he never told Claire about what really happened the night their mother died.
- Cornelius is an atheist.
|Season 1 Appearances|
|Season 3 Appearances|
|"Speak Your Truth"||"Nothing to Fear"||"Trust Your Gut"||"Naughty or Nice"||"Mountains And Molehills"|
| "Ties That Bind"
|"Over Troubled Water"||"Lemons and Lemonade"||"On Shaky Ground"||"Down By Law"|
|"Folie à Deux"||"Born This Way"||"Best Laid Plans"||"Lock It Down"||"Devil In Disguise"|
|"An Inconvenient Truth"|| "The Parent Trap"
|"This Is Now"||"Crisis Of Confidence"||"The Tipping Point"|