Tom was called to the bar in 1976. In the early stages of his career, he practiced as a criminal lawyer, a civil litigation lawyer and a family law lawyer. He now practices only in the area of family law and alternative dispute resolution. Tom is a Certified Specialist in Mediation (FDR Med) and Arbitration (FDR Arb). Tom has appeared at all levels of Court in Ontario from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice to the Ontario Court of Appeal. He has conducted many trials and many successful negotiations.
As a Mediator, Tom has assisted many mediation clients in resolving their disputes on a comprehensive basis - settling financial issues such as property division and support as well as parenting issues. He actively promotes mediation as the means of resolving family law disputes with a non-adversarial approach.
Tom is an experienced Arbitrator of family law disputes, appointed by parties who wish to resolve their disputes privately under the Arbitration Act. Arbitration can prove an effective and cost-efficient method of resolving any family law dispute and Tom is committed to alternatives to dispute resolution such as this.
Tom is an active participant in the legal profession. Tom has presented many topics at continuing legal education seminars for the Canadian Bar Association and the Law Society of Ontario (LSO). He has written articles for presentation at such seminars and for other newsletters and periodicals in the area of family law. He has been engaged as an expert witness for standard of care in family law cases. Tom is a founding member of Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario. He is currently on committees to reform family law and the court system and is a Dispute Resolution Officer at Barrie Family Court. He is the past president of the Family Law Section of the Ontario Bar Association, past president of Family Mediation Canada, past president of the Ontario Association for Family Mediation, past vice-president of the Simcoe County Lawyers' Association, past president of the Simcoe County Family Law Lawyers' Association and past coordinator for Simcoe County’s Dispute Resolution Officers Program.
Tom received the OBA Award for Excellence in Family Law in Memory of James G. McLeod in June 2014. He was named Lawyer of the Year for 2014 by Best Lawyers ® (as selected by peer recognition). Tom also received the FDRIO Crowe Soberman Award of Excellence in Dispute Resolution in November 2018.
Tom has also been a committed member of his community. He is currently a volunteer with the Barrie Colts AAA Zone Hockey Association and is their Past Director of Risk Management and Past President. He is a past member of the Board of Catholic Charities, Archdiocese of Toronto, and a past President of the Barrie Minor Hockey Association. He is a supporter of numerous local charitable events.
In his free time, Tom enjoys spending time with his family, golfing and cheering on the Montreal Canadiens.