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Thomas G. Smith

Retired Partner

In his 40 years of practice as a trial lawyer at Harter Secrest & Emery, Tom Smith achieved notable success in litigating major civil cases in the New York State and federal courts. As lead attorney in several groundbreaking legal challenges to New York’s compliance with the federal Medicaid Act and the State’s Public Health Law, he succeeded in obtaining aggregate monetary recoveries exceeding $650 million for health care provider clients statewide. He represented businesses, trade associations and professionals in a variety of litigated matters before the courts and administrative agencies, including: 

  • Prosecuting legal actions, including Constitutional claims, against state and federal officials on behalf of health care providers and their trade associations.
  • Representing regulated businesses in challenges to overreaching government regulation and enforcement.
  • Litigating cases involving breach of commercial contracts, trade secret issues, fraud, and other business torts.
  • Representing businesses, religious institutions, the media and individuals in defamation and other First Amendment cases.
  • Defending physicians and other health care providers in matters of government enforcement, hospital privileging and professional licensure.
  • Serving as Mediator and Arbitrator in legal disputes.

PROFESSIONAL & CIVIC AFFILIATIONS

  • Canisius College Board of Regents, 1999-2006; 2009-present
  • President, The Desmond Society of Canisius College, 2017 – present
  • President, Monroe County Bar Association, 2007-2008
  • Member, House of Delegates, New York State Bar Association, 2006-2011
  • Board Member, Foundation of the Monroe County Bar, 2006-2008
  • President, MCBA Center of Education, 2006-2007
  • Trustee and Secretary, Monroe County Bar Association, 2002-2004
  • Chair, MCBA Awards Committee, 2008-2011
  • President, Mercury Opera Rochester, 2009-2012
  • Board Member, HUGS Foundation, Inc., 2013-present
  • Board Member, BOA Editions, Ltd., 2017 – present 
  • Board Member, Volunteer Legal Services Project, 2006-2008
  • Executive Committee, Metropolitan Bar Caucus, National Conference of Bar Presidents, 2008-2011
  • Member, Governor’s Judicial Screening Committee, New York’s Fourth Judicial Department, 1989-2006
  • Chair, Annual Fund Campaign, Canisius College 2006-2007
  • Master, Rochester Inns of the Court
  • Founding Chair, Business Torts Committee, New York State Bar Association, Torts & Insurance Law Section
  • Founding Chair, Committee on Payment Issues, New York State Bar Association, Health Law Section
  • Member, New York State Bar Association Committee on Court Structure and Operations, 2011-2013
  • Member, New York State Bar Association Task Force on Cameras in the Courtroom, 2005-2007
  • Playwright, Producer and Director, 12 original children’s plays adapting fairy tales into mock trials, performed annually for grammar school students in the Rochester area.
  • Mentor, Rochester Lawyers for Learning Program, 1993-2010
  • Former Division I college athlete, high school basketball official, and volunteer coach in youth sports

HONORS & AWARDS

  • Recipient, LaSalle Medal, Canisius College, 2017
  • Named in Best Lawyers® as the 2015 Rochester, NY Appellate Law “Lawyer of the Year”
  • Named in Best Lawyers® as the 2013 Rochester, NY Health Care Law “Lawyer of the Year”
  • Selected annually by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® in the fields of Appellate Practice, Commercial Litigation, Health Care Law and Professional Malpractice Law – Defendants and Plaintiffs
  • Selected annually for inclusion in Super Lawyers® in the fields of Health Care Law, Appellate Law and Business Litigation
  • Selected as Top Rated Lawyer in Health Care Law by Corporate Counsel, 2012
  • Peer Review Rated “AV Preeminent,” Martindale-Hubbell for 30 consecutive years
  • Recipient, Humanitarian Award, Monroe County Bar Foundation, 2017
  • Recipient, American Association of Fundraising Professionals Award for volunteer work on behalf of Canisius College (2004)
  • Recipient, Monroe Bar Association President’s Award for leadership and service (1993)
  • Member, Di Gamma Honor Society, Canisius College (2005)

PRESENTATIONS

  • Adjunct Professor, Canisius College, Department of Political Science, 2015 –
  • Adjunct Professor, Nazareth College, Department of Legal Studies, 2015 – 2017
  • Frequent speaker, moderator and instructor at industry, civic and bar association legal education programs statewide and nationally on matters including:

• Commercial litigation

ADMISSIONS

  • New York
  • New York State Supreme Court
  • United States District Court, Western District of New York
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • United States District Court, Southern District of New York
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

CLERKSHIP

  • New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division, Third Department (1974-1975)

EDUCATION

  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 1974, Dailey Scholar
  • Canisius College, B.A., cum laude, 1971

In his 40 years of practice as a trial lawyer at Harter Secrest & Emery, Tom Smith achieved notable success in litigating major civil cases in the New York State and federal courts. As lead attorney in several groundbreaking legal challenges to New York’s compliance with the federal Medicaid Act and the State’s Public Health Law, he succeeded in obtaining aggregate monetary recoveries exceeding $650 million for health care provider clients statewide. He represented businesses, trade associations and professionals in a variety of litigated matters before the courts and administrative agencies, including: 

  • Prosecuting legal actions, including Constitutional claims, against state and federal officials on behalf of health care providers and their trade associations.
  • Representing regulated businesses in challenges to overreaching government regulation and enforcement.
  • Litigating cases involving breach of commercial contracts, trade secret issues, fraud, and other business torts.
  • Representing businesses, religious institutions, the media and individuals in defamation and other First Amendment cases.
  • Defending physicians and other health care providers in matters of government enforcement, hospital privileging and professional licensure.
  • Serving as Mediator and Arbitrator in legal disputes.

PROFESSIONAL & CIVIC AFFILIATIONS

  • Canisius College Board of Regents, 1999-2006; 2009-present
  • President, The Desmond Society of Canisius College, 2017 – present
  • President, Monroe County Bar Association, 2007-2008
  • Member, House of Delegates, New York State Bar Association, 2006-2011
  • Board Member, Foundation of the Monroe County Bar, 2006-2008
  • President, MCBA Center of Education, 2006-2007
  • Trustee and Secretary, Monroe County Bar Association, 2002-2004
  • Chair, MCBA Awards Committee, 2008-2011
  • President, Mercury Opera Rochester, 2009-2012
  • Board Member, HUGS Foundation, Inc., 2013-present
  • Board Member, BOA Editions, Ltd., 2017 – present 
  • Board Member, Volunteer Legal Services Project, 2006-2008
  • Executive Committee, Metropolitan Bar Caucus, National Conference of Bar Presidents, 2008-2011
  • Member, Governor’s Judicial Screening Committee, New York’s Fourth Judicial Department, 1989-2006
  • Chair, Annual Fund Campaign, Canisius College 2006-2007
  • Master, Rochester Inns of the Court
  • Founding Chair, Business Torts Committee, New York State Bar Association, Torts & Insurance Law Section
  • Founding Chair, Committee on Payment Issues, New York State Bar Association, Health Law Section
  • Member, New York State Bar Association Committee on Court Structure and Operations, 2011-2013
  • Member, New York State Bar Association Task Force on Cameras in the Courtroom, 2005-2007
  • Playwright, Producer and Director, 12 original children’s plays adapting fairy tales into mock trials, performed annually for grammar school students in the Rochester area.
  • Mentor, Rochester Lawyers for Learning Program, 1993-2010
  • Former Division I college athlete, high school basketball official, and volunteer coach in youth sports

HONORS & AWARDS

  • Recipient, LaSalle Medal, Canisius College, 2017
  • Named in Best Lawyers® as the 2015 Rochester, NY Appellate Law “Lawyer of the Year”
  • Named in Best Lawyers® as the 2013 Rochester, NY Health Care Law “Lawyer of the Year”
  • Selected annually by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® in the fields of Appellate Practice, Commercial Litigation, Health Care Law and Professional Malpractice Law – Defendants and Plaintiffs
  • Selected annually for inclusion in Super Lawyers® in the fields of Health Care Law, Appellate Law and Business Litigation
  • Selected as Top Rated Lawyer in Health Care Law by Corporate Counsel, 2012
  • Peer Review Rated “AV Preeminent,” Martindale-Hubbell for 30 consecutive years
  • Recipient, Humanitarian Award, Monroe County Bar Foundation, 2017
  • Recipient, American Association of Fundraising Professionals Award for volunteer work on behalf of Canisius College (2004)
  • Recipient, Monroe Bar Association President’s Award for leadership and service (1993)
  • Member, Di Gamma Honor Society, Canisius College (2005)

PRESENTATIONS

  • Adjunct Professor, Canisius College, Department of Political Science, 2015 –
  • Adjunct Professor, Nazareth College, Department of Legal Studies, 2015 – 2017
  • Frequent speaker, moderator and instructor at industry, civic and bar association legal education programs statewide and nationally on matters including:

• Commercial litigation

ADMISSIONS

  • New York
  • New York State Supreme Court
  • United States District Court, Western District of New York
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • United States District Court, Southern District of New York
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

CLERKSHIP

  • New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division, Third Department (1974-1975)

EDUCATION

  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 1974, Dailey Scholar
  • Canisius College, B.A., cum laude, 1971
Smith_Thomas
Thomas G. Smith