Thomas A. Mars
Tom Mars is an accomplished trial lawyer, a nationally recognized advocate in collegiate sports, and an experienced crisis consultant for companies, executives, and public officials. Tom's office is in Northwest Arkansas.
After graduating first in his law school class and making the top score on the bar exam, Tom began his career as a law clerk to Judge Monroe McKay on the U.S. Court of Appeals. Following his clerkship, Tom spent the next ten years establishing himself as one of Arkansas’ most formidable trial lawyers.
In the 1990s, Tom’s high-profile clients included the Governor of Arkansas. In 1998, the Governor asked Tom to join his leadership team as Director of the Arkansas State Police—the state’s highest-ranking law enforcement position. He served in that capacity for nearly three years before returning to private practice as a trial lawyer in Northwest Arkansas.
Not long after returning to private practice, Tom was recruited by Walmart to manage its vast litigation portfolio as Vice President and Assistant General Counsel. Four months after joining Walmart’s legal department, he was promoted to Senior Vice President and General Counsel and became responsible for all of the company’s legal matters.
- American Bar Association “Spirit of Excellence Award”
- Inside Counsel magazine established “Thomas Mars Transformative Leadership Award”
- Minority Corporate Counsel Association “Diversity Award”
- National Asian Pacific American Bar Association “President’s Award”
- National Association of Women Lawyers “President’s Award”
- National Action Network (Rev. Al Sharpton) “Corporate Citizen Award”
- Ranked in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers, Litigation: General Commercial, 2018
- J.D., University of Arkansas School of Law
- Graduated first in class
- Editor-in-Chief of the Law Review
- Top score on Arkansas Bar Exam
- B.A., Criminology, Arkansas State University
In recent years, Tom has represented a number of high-profile student athletes in matters involving NCAA eligibility issues. Based on his success in securing eligibility waivers for his student-athlete clients, sports writers have referred to Tom as the “the most impactful man in a suit in college football” and “the de facto commissioner of the new [college football] culture.” In describing Tom’s ability to win difficult cases in high-stakes litigation, members of the media and former clients have described Tom as “fearless,” “relentless,” and “committed to winning.” Commenting on Tom’s track record as a trial lawyer, one journalist recently said that “Mars is to lawyering what Tom Brady is to quarterbacking.”
“A one-man wrecking crew — Mars has been referred to as a transfer ‘magician,’ ‘savant,’ and ‘super attorney.’ . . . The aptest description of Mars is a workhorse. When he’s hired, the case becomes all-consuming.”
“Thomas Mars is a fearless top shelf trial lawyer…. Mars is to lawyering what Tom Brady is to quarterbacking.”
“Nick Saban wishes he were as intensely focused on victory as Tom Mars.”
In the litigation arena, Tom’s accomplishments have included a number of seven-figure jury verdicts and eight-figure settlements and the successful defense of corporate defendants in complex litigation. His private practice experience includes business torts and contract disputes, class actions, RICO, defamation, civil rights, medical malpractice, FOIA, administrative law claims and the representation of clients in civil and criminal federal investigations.
The breadth and depth of Tom’s experience make him uniquely qualified to represent individual and corporate clients in litigation, administrative proceedings, and enforcement actions by government agencies. His prior experience also makes him well-suited to work with clients and their PR professionals facing situations that could result in lasting business and reputational damage.
ADDvantage Media v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Lead counsel for public company alleging breach of contract.
Thompson v. Edward D. Jones
Co-class counsel in securities fraud class action.
Fowler v. Arkla, Inc.
Lead counsel for class of utility ratepayers. Following partial $5.8 million settlement during trial, PSC ruled that ratepayers were entitled to an additional $17.1 million refund.