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Joseph Tomain

Dean Emeritus and Wilbert and Helen Ziegler Professor of Law



University of Cincinnati College of Law

Joseph P. Tomain is Dean Emeritus and the Wilbert & Helen Ziegler Professor of Law at the University of Cincinnati College of Law.

Dean Tomain’s research and teaching interests have focused on Energy Law, Land Use, Government Regulation, and Contracts. Dean Tomain received his J.D. from George Washington University National Law Center and his A.B. from the University of Notre Dame.

Most of Dean Tomain’s working experience has been in the academy. He has had regulatory experience in practice and stays involved in energy and environmental matters as a member of the advisory board of the Institute of Environmental Studies at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Additionally, his work in the field of energy comes through publications, the occasional commentary, and news editorials. He is also a member of the Multidisciplinary Council of Tennessee, which is examining issues surrounding science in the courtroom.

After completing law school, Dean Tomain worked in the private sector for a New Jersey law firm handling general litigation matters. He began his law teaching career in 1976 at Drake University Law School and joined the University of Cincinnati in 1983. In 1986-87 he served as Visiting Professor at the University of Texas School of Law. He has either planned programs or presented papers for the Association of American Law Schools; American Bar Association; American Judicature Society; American Legal Studies Association; American Planning Association; Canadian Institute on Resources Law; Cincinnati Bar Association; Conference of Chief Justices; Federal Bar Association; Hofstra University School of Law; Iowa Planning Association; North American Conference on Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution; Ohio CLE Institute; Ohio Planning Association; Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Institute; University of Cincinnati (various colleges); University of Kansas School of Law; United States Sixth Circuit Conference; and, continuing legal education programs and bar review courses. Dean Tomain was elected a Visiting Fellow at Harris Manchester College, Oxford University, is the recipient of an NEH summer fellowship award, and served as a Fulbright Senior Specialist in Law in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

Dean Tomain’s publications include books entitled Creon’s Ghost: Law, Justice, and the Humanities, Energy Law and Policy for the 21st Century, Regulatory Law & Policy, Energy Law and Policy, Nuclear Power Transformation, Energy Law in a Nutshell, and Energy Decision Making. He has also written numerous articles and delivered papers on the subjects of energy law and government regulation.

In addition to his administrative duties, teaching, and scholarship, Dean Tomain serves on a number of professional and civic organizations. Since 2000 he has served as Vice Chair of the Year in Review Committee of the American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources Committee on Energy Industry Restructuring, Finance, Mergers, and Acquisitions. He is Chair of the Board of the KnowledgeWorks Foundation. He serves on the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Judicial Independence Commission on State Judicial Selection Standards. He is also a member of the Board of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation, a delegate to the Ohio State Bar Association, a member of the Board of the Ohio State Bar Foundation, a member of the Board of the Ohio Legal Assistance Foundation, and has been elected a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation.