Jim Thomas Neal Harwell scaled

James G. Thomas


James G. Thomas joined Neal & Harwell in 1982 and is now an emeritus member of the Firm. He has experience in a broad range of civil and criminal litigation matters, with an emphasis on federal criminal defense work. Jim also has extensive appellate experience in both the federal and state courts.

In 2018, Jim was recognized as “Best of the Bar” in the area of criminal law by the Nashville Business Journal. He is also recognized by Best Lawyers® 2022 for Commercial Litigation and Criminal Defense: White-Collar. His experience includes extensive capital defense litigation on a pro bono basis.

Professional & Civic Affiliations
  • American Bar Association/Criminal Justice and Litigation Sections – Member
  • Federal Bar Association (Chattanooga Chapter) – Member
  • Tennessee Bar Association – Member
  • Nashville Bar Association – Member
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers – Member
  • Nashville Bar Foundation – Member
  • Criminal Justice Act (CJA) Panel Selection Committee for the Middle District of Tennessee – Former Member 1999-2018
  • Sixth Circuit Pattern Criminal Jury Instructions Committee – Former Member 1989-1990
  • Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee – Former Member 1996-2001; President 2000
  • Project Return, Inc. – Former Board Member 2003-2006; President 2006-2011
  • Tennesseans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty – Former Board Member 2010-2015
  • The Best Lawyers in America® 2023-2024 – Commercial Litigation & Criminal Defense: White-Collar
  • Vanderbilt University School of Law, 1980, J.D.; Associate Editor, Vanderbilt Law Review 1978-1980
  • Vanderbilt University, 1976, B.A. in German, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa