Thomas C. Papson

Volunteer Staff Attorney

Thomas Papson is a Volunteer Staff Attorney in the Consumer Law Unit. He represents clients in a range of consumer cases, with a focus on debt collection matters, and also supports Legal Aid’s court-based initiative for the D.C. Superior Court’s Collection Calendars.

Tom joined Legal Aid in September 2013 as a pro bono volunteer. In January 2014, he became a Volunteer Staff Attorney upon his retirement as a partner with McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP. At McKenna, he had maintained a commercial and government contracts litigation practice for more than 30 years. During his time in private practice, Tom was a member of the Legal Aid Board of Trustees (1992 to 2005) and served as Board President (2000 to 2002).

Tom began his legal career as a law clerk to Judge John Sirica of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. In private practice, Tom was active in pro bono work, including serving as a court-appointed amicus in litigation concerning conditions in the D.C. public schools and as litigation counsel for two historic preservation groups in the District. Tom also held various leadership positions in the D.C. Bar, most recently as Chair of the Judicial Evaluation Committee. He was the organizer and managing editor of the first D.C. Bar Practice Manual, which was recognized with the Bar’s President’s Award.

Tom is also an Adjunct Professor of Law at The George Washington University Law School, where he teaches government contracts law and advocacy.

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Tom Papson


J.D., Georgetown University Law Center
B.A., University of Pennsylvania


Phone: (202) 386-6689
Fax: (202) 727-2132