Thomas P. McGonigle assists clients with commercial litigation and administrative law matters. He is the regional partner in charge of the firm’s Wilmington, Del., Office.
Tom has more than 20 years of experience as a lawyer in private practice and public service. In private practice, Tom has represented corporations and individuals in complex commercial litigation and regulatory matters. He has also conducted state-appointed investigations in high-profile matters and been nominated to various boards and commissions.
Tom previously served as the partner in charge of another law firm’s Delaware office, which, under his leadership, experienced considerable growth. He has handled a number of significant matters before the Delaware Supreme Court, the Delaware Court of Chancery, the Delaware Superior Court and the Delaware Public Service Commission.
In the public sector, Tom most recently served as Chief of Staff to Delaware Governor Jack A. Markell. As the governor’s most senior advisor, Tom held responsibility for management of the administration, including day-to-day oversight of the senior staff and cabinet. Tom also served as Chief Legal Counsel and Policy Director to former Delaware Governor (and now U.S. Senator) Thomas R. Carper. In that role, he supervised all legal operations for the governor's office, and as policy director, he developed the governor's policy and legislative agenda and implemented the legislative strategy.
Additionally, Tom is a former Deputy Attorney General, in which capacity he primarily handled securities and consumer fraud cases.
Some of Tom’s representative matters include:
- Represented Delaware in an important constitutional challenge of the state’s bank franchise tax: Lehman Bank FSB v. Delaware State Bank Commissioner.
- Represented Bluewater Wind before the Public Service Commission in its successful efforts to secure the nation’s first offshore wind power purchase agreement.
- Represented a corporate director/officer before the Delaware Supreme Court in Cochran v. Stifel Financial Corporation, a case of first impression that established a corporation’s duty to pay “fees on fees” for a director’s costs in pursuing indemnification.
Tom has conducted state-appointed investigations in high-profile matters and has been appointed to various boards and commissions, including the Delaware Stadium Corporation, Delaware Emergency Medical Services Oversight Council, Criminal Justice Council, Sentencing Accountability Commission and the Prison Construction Oversight Task Force. He was appointed to serve as Co-Chair of the inaugural Judicial Strategies Committee for the Supreme Court of the State of Delaware effective July 1, 2015, where he is charged with developing and implementing a long-term strategic planning approach for the Delaware Courts that will facilitate the identification of legislative and other issues, and the development of policy-oriented and legislative solutions.
In his role as Chief Legal Counsel and Policy Director to former Delaware Governor (and now U.S. Senator) Thomas R. Carper, Tom supervised all legal operations for the governor's office, developed the governor's policy and legislative agenda, and implemented the legislative strategy. While a Deputy Attorney General, Tom primarily handled securities and consumer fraud cases.
As Chief of Staff to Governor Markell, Tom was the governor’s most senior advisor and had overall responsibility for management of the administration, including day-to-day oversight of the senior staff and cabinet. Governor Markell inherited historic fiscal challenges upon his election and Tom helped tackle this crisis, including leading an effort to reform the state government pension and health benefits system to save taxpayers millions. With the immediate fiscal crisis abated, Tom played an important role in managing and directing the administration’s focused efforts on job creation, improving Delaware schools and making state government more efficient.
- Pennsylvania State University, Dickinson School of Law, J.D., 1992
- Elizabethtown College, B.A., 1989
Delaware State Bar Association, Executive Committee
Delaware Stadium Corporation, Chairman
Co-Chair of the Judicial Strategies Committee for the Supreme Court