Hampton, Va. - Hampton University welcomes the Honorable John Charles Thomas, retired justice of the Supreme Court of Virginia, as the keynote speaker for the 71st Annual Opening Convocation on Sunday, Sept. 29. Recipients of the Hampton University Edward L. Hamm, Sr. teaching award Dr. Paula Barnes, chairperson of the Department of English and Foreign Languages, and Dr. Francisco Coronel, professor of business administration, will be recognized at the ceremony.
Opening Convocation will be held in Ogden Hall and will begin at 10:45 a.m. The event is free and open to the public.
Thomas is currently a senior partner at Hunton & Williams in Richmond, Va. He is a retired justice of the Supreme Court of Virginia. In that role he ruled on thousands of appellate matters addressing the full range of Virginia law including contracts, torts, property, public utilities, trust and estates, and taxation.
Thomas is admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of Virginia, the Supreme Court of the United States, and the United States Courts of Appeal for the 4th, 6th, 9th, 10th, and 11th and D.C. Circuits. He is an AAA certified Mediator and Arbitrator and serves on the AAA Panel of Commercial Arbitrators as well as on the AAA Panel of International Arbitrators. Since June 2005 he has been a Judge of the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland.
A frequent speaker and lecturer across the country and around the world, Thomas has lectured at the Interim University Center in Dubrovnik, Croatia on "Enforcing Interim Arbitral Awards Under the New York Convention"; he has delivered the Constitutional Law lecture to the Firsties at the United States Military Academy at West Point; and he has delivered the "First-Day, First Year" lectures at the University of Virginia School of Law and the College of William & Mary School of Law since 1990.