Thomas F. Connell

Retired Partner

Thomas (Tom) Connell is a retired partner in the firm's Litigation/Controversy Department. He joined the firm in 1980 and retired in 2012. Mr. Connell had an extensive trial and appellate litigation practice in complex civil and criminal matters. In over 25 years of practice, he successfully litigated commercial cases before federal and state trial courts, federal administrative agencies, US and international arbitration tribunals, and appellate courts, including the US Supreme Court.


Mr. Connell’s litigation practice covered a broad range of subject areas:

  • Antitrust: He represented an Israeli tomato seed manufacturer that successfully defeated, both at the trial court level and on appeal, the Justice Department’s Sherman Act claims.
  • International arbitration: He tried before the ICC in Paris, France, a complex contract dispute involving allegations of fraud over the sale of a European insurance company valued at over $100 million; successfully defended a series of breach of contract and fraud claims involving foreign investments in the Russian oil and gas industry; tried an expropriation action before a special tribunal in The Hague on behalf of a US citizen whose property was stolen by the Government of Iran; and successfully tried (before an arbitration panel in the US) claims valued in excess of $200 million against the world’s largest pulp and paper manufacturer.
  • International Litigation: He represented a Saudi polyethylene manufacturer in a series of US cases against a major US oil company, involving claims of breach of contract and fraud, valued in the hundreds of millions of dollars, arising out of disputed intellectual property rights.
  • Insurance Coverage: He represented for more than a decade a major property and casualty insurer in a number of complex lawsuits involving claims of coverage for environmental contamination, in state and federal courts around the country, and has advised insureds on insurance coverage issues in cases involving pharmaceutical litigation, Internet and broadcast liabilities, and directors’ and officers’ liability.
  • Commercial Contract Disputes: He was a member of the trial team that successfully secured a $505 million judgment, and termination of a licensing agreement, in one of the largest plaintiff’s verdicts ever issued in federal district court (IGEN International v. Roche Diagnostics GmbH).
  • Patent and Intellectual Property Disputes: He represented clients in numerous disputes involving intellectual property and/or patents, including cases involving software rights, patents to chemical processes, rights to diagnostic equipment inventions and oil and gas rights.
  • Broadcast Litigation: He successfully represented each of the four major broadcast networks in a variety of contested proceedings, including license renewal proceedings before the FCC (including one action that involved challenges by the Commission to broadcast assets valued at over $1 billion), defamation actions brought against a major network by two international tobacco giants, and a breach of contract action brought by a television network affiliate that asserted claims for over $100 million (which claims were defeated after a jury trial, and on appeal).
  • Employment Litigation: He successfully represented one of the nation’s leading sources of mortgage loans in employment law disputes, including claims of discrimination and retaliation brought by employees in federal court.
  • Securities: He successfully represented clients against claims of securities violations brought both by the US government and by individuals, both in federal court and in domestic arbitration, and successfully represented a major accounting firm in an SEC enforcement action.
  • Tax Litigation: He successfully represented a major US oil company in tax disputes in the US Supreme Court and lower federal courts, and the alcoholic beverage industry in the Florida state court system, including the Florida Supreme Court.
  • US Supreme Court: Over the years, he represented numerous clients in the US Supreme Court, in cases involving criminal law, First Amendment issues, broadcast license issues, Native American rights and oil-and-gas law.

Professional Activities

Mr. Connell is a Court-appointed mediator, US District Court for the District of Columbia. He is a member of the American Bar Association and a past vice-chair of the Committee on Adjudication, ABA Administrative Law Section. He has been a lecturer on ethics at the University of Pennsylvania, and was for many years a member of the American Inns of Court. Before attending law school, Mr. Connell was a Peace Corps volunteer in Kabul/Tashkurgan, Afghanistan, for three years.

Insights & News


  • Education

    • JD, University of Pennsylvania Law School, 1979

      cum laude Articles Editor, University of Pennsylvania Law Review
    • AB, Princeton University, 1971

      summa cum laude
  • Admissions

    • District of Columbia

  • Clerkships

    • The Hon. Edward Weinfeld, US District Court for the Southern District of New York, 1979 - 1980



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