Tom has served as president and CEO of Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin since 2005. In this role he is responsible for the day-to-day activities of the firm and implementing the strategic goals and objectives of the organization through three senior executives, nine board members and over 1,000 employees.
In addition to his executive duties, Tom also serves as the director of the Casualty Department, and has complete oversight of more than 190 attorneys and 13 distinct practice groups. Tom drives the firm's liability practices through a wide range of business strategies for future growth in each area of law and business. He focuses on continually improving the firm's efficiencies and processes, and on promoting client satisfaction with the lawyering and service provided by the firm. He also actively promotes the professional development of the firm's attorneys.
With over 30 years of experience in the legal profession, Tom remains constantly aware of changes in the business and legal community and continues to counsel and guide clients through this ever-changing landscape.
Over the years, he has defended hundreds of matters on behalf of corporations, individuals and insurance companies involving a wide range of legal issues including product liability, premises liability, liquor liability and health care liability matters. Tom has lectured extensively throughout the state on the practice of civil defense litigation.
Tom is a former chair of the Federal Practice Committee of the Montgomery Bar Association. He is actively involved with the Defense Research Institute, the Pennsylvania Defense Institute and the Product Liability Advisory Council. He also served as a member of the board of directors of the Insurance Society of Philadelphia for six years. Currently, Tom serves as a trustee of the Philadelphia Bar Foundation, the charitable arm of the Philadelphia Bar Association, and is a member of its executive committee.
Tom was first elected to the firm's board of directors in 1996. In 1999 he was elected to the firm's three-member executive committee. He is also a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates and has been honored in the publication Best Lawyers in America ® and has been recognized as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer.
Significant Representative Matters
Tried one of the first long-term care cases litigated in the City of Philadelphia. Successfully represented the defendant, an owner and operator of a long-term care facility. The plaintiff was a resident of the facility and had been assaulted by a care provider who was convicted of aggravated assault as a result of his mishandling of the plaintiff. Claims were made for compensatory and punitive damages against the long-term care facility for the actions of its employee and for its failure to properly screen the employee who assaulted the plaintiff. The jury returned a defense verdict on behalf of the long-term care facility.
Successfully represented an insurance broker in an alleged insurance brokerage malpractice matter. Plaintiff sued the insurance brokerage alleging that the brokerage had misrepresented the nature of the insurance coverage available to the land owner resulting in an economic loss of between $5 million and $8 million. The case was complicated by the fact that the insurance broker whom Tom represented was suffering from Alzheimer's disease and was incompetent to testify at the time of trial.
Defended an underinsured motorist case brought by a plastic surgeon. The plastic surgeon, who had been rear ended in a motor vehicle accident, claimed that as a result of the injuries sustained in the accident, he had developed a radiculopathy radiating into his right dominant arm precluding him from engaging in the practice of plastic surgery. The surgeon had $5 million in underinsured motorist coverage. The arbitrators made an award of $850,000 in favor of the plastic surgeon in a case that was reserved for $5 million.
Successfully represented a psychologist and in-patient treatment facility in a case in which it was alleged that patient was inaccurately evaluated and inappropriately discharged. The patient committed suicide within 10 days after his discharge from the facility by the psychologist. Jury found in favor of defense concluding that the decision to discharge the decedent was appropriate given his presentation on the date of the release.
Defended the manufacturer of a pediculicide (lice treatment) shampoo in a case in which it was alleged that the shampoo caused second degree burns to a 3-year-old child over 60 percent of her body, causing her death. At the time the case was filed, the county coroner and the decedent's treating physicians had opined that her death was caused by an allergic reaction resulting in tissue destruction that manifested itself in the form of second degree burns. The defense assembled a team of experts to establish that the child's death was caused by hot water scalding and not by a chemical reaction to the shampoo. The pediculicide had been manufactured and distributed pursuant to over-the-counter regulations promulgated by the Food and Drug Administration.
Areas of Practice
“Toxic Torts: Workable Defenses Available to the Corporate Defendant,” (co-author, Robert Goggin) 28 Villanova L. R. 1208, 1993
“How To Evaluate And Settle Personal Injury Claims,” Professional Education System, Inc, 1989
“Cross Examination of Plaintiff's Life Care Expert,” Product Liability Council Deskbook, 1999, 2001
Temple University School of Law, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (J.D., 1982)
University of Dayton (B.A., 1974)
Honors: Cum Laude
Areas of Practice
- Temple University School of Law (J.D., 1982)
- University of Dayton (B.A., cum laude, 1974)
- Pennsylvania, 1982
- U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit, 1984
- U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania, 1984
- U.S. District Court Middle District of Pennsylvania, 2000
- U.S. Supreme Court, 2001
Associations & Memberships
- American Board of Trial Advocates, Diplomate, 1997 - Present
- Defense Research Institute, 1988 - Present
- Insurance Society of Philadelphia, Member of Board of Directors, 2006 - 2010
- Pennsylvania Bar Association, 1982 - Present
- Pennsylvania Defense Institute, 1985 - Present
- Philadelphia Bar Association, 2000 - Present
- Philadelphia Bar Association, Co-Chair, Finance Section of the Law Practice Management Committee, 2007, 2008
- Philadelphia Bar Foundation, Member of Board of Trustees, 2009 - 2011
- Products Liability Advisory Council, 1988 - Present
Honors & Awards
- AV® Preeminent™ by LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell, 2001-Present
- Best Lawyers in America - Medical Malpractice Law-Defendants, Personal Injury Litigation-Defendants, 2001-Present
- Pennsylvania Super Lawyer, 2005-2014