Willard K. Tom brings more than 35 years of public and private sector antitrust experience to our clients. He was the General Counsel of the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) during the first part of the Obama administration and has held several other high-level government positions. Will represents clients before federal and state agencies and in the courts in mergers and acquisitions, cartel investigations and litigation, intellectual property (IP) matters, monopolization, and other antitrust matters. While at the Department of Justice (DOJ), he was one of the two principal authors of the DOJ/FTC IP Licensing Guidelines.
As FTC general counsel, Will took part in the most significant FTC matters relating to competition and consumer protection, including matters in the pharmaceutical, healthcare, and technology industries, and many others. He also played a significant role in the agency’s engagement with its foreign government counterparts, particularly in Asia.
Will previously served as deputy director of the Bureau of Competition of the FTC, where he oversaw nonmerger and competition enforcement, patent-antitrust cases, policy development, and healthcare cases. He also led that bureau’s policy office.
At the DOJ, Will was the counselor to the head of the Antitrust Division, where he took on telecommunications, vertical restraint, and IP matters.
Will is recognized as an authority in the antitrust and competition field. He has held several distinguished positions in the American Bar Association (ABA) and other organizations. He has also written seminal articles on intellectual property, loyalty discounts, and the rule of reason. Will is routinely invited to speak on antitrust matters, and has spoken at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN); the Asian Competition Forum; the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD); OECD Korea; a workshop for Chinese antitrust judges; the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA); the Intellectual Property Owners; the ABA Section of Antitrust Law and Section of Business Law; FTC/DOJ joint workshops; the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI); the Practicing Law Institute (PLI); and various events in London, Brussels, Beijing, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Seoul, Taipei, and Tokyo.
Harvard Law School, 1979, J.D., Cum Laude
Harvard University, 1975, A.B., Cum Laude
District of Columbia
Supreme Court of the United States
Awards and Affiliations
Ranked, Antitrust, District of Columbia, Chambers USA (2006–2009, 2016–2021)
Life Sciences Star, Non-IP Litigation & Enforcement, LMG Life Sciences (2020, 2021)
Member, Practice Group of the Year, Competition, Law360 (2017–2020)
Recipient, Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award (2018)
Recipient, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association’s Daniel K. Inouye Trailblazer Award (2017)
Recognized, US News & World Report and Best Lawyers 2017 Practice Group of the Year for Antitrust Law
Recommended, Antitrust: Cartel; Recommended, Antitrust: Civil litigation/class actions: defense, The Legal 500 US (2018)
Recommended, Antitrust - Civil Litigation/Class Actions and Antitrust - Merger Control, The Legal 500 US (2016, 2017, 2019)
Recognized, Antitrust Law, Washington, DC, The Best Lawyers in America (2005–2020, 2022)
Recognized, Mergers & Acquisitions and Antitrust Trailblazer, The National Law Journal (2018)
Recognized, Washington DC Super Lawyers (2007–2009, 2014–2018)
Recognized, Who’s Who in America (2009–2013)
Recognized, Who's Who in American Law (1987, 1993, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014–2016)
Member, American Law Institute (Adviser, RESTATEMENT OF THE LAW, CONSUMER CONTRACTS; Members Consultative Group, PRINCIPLES OF GOVERNMENT ETHICS)
Former Member, Administrative Conference of the United States
Former Member, American Bar Association Antitrust Section, Section Council
Former Member, American Bar Association Section of Business Law, Section Council
Former Member, DC Federal Judicial Nominations Commission