John H. Thomas is an Associate Professor at the Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management, Florida International University, Miami, Florida. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and the University of Miami School of Law. After more than thirty years as a practicing attorney in Miami, he began teaching as an adjunct professor at FIU in 2006, then joined the faculty full time in 2008.
He was a partner at several law offices during his legal career, practicing in both transactions and litigation. He is a member of the bar of the State of Florida, as well as several Federal jurisdictions including the United States Court of International Trade. He has earned Board Certification in Admiralty and Maritime Law by The Florida Bar and has served as Chair of The Florida Bar Admiralty Law Committee.
He is especially knowledgeable regarding international law and business transactions, having extensive experience in international trade, travel, shipment of cargo, and regulations for cruise ships, cargo ships, aircraft, yachts and passengers. He has provided legal services and counsel to individuals, organizations, small and large businesses, cruise lines, banks, insurers, and owners of yachts, ships and aircraft of all sizes. In representation of parties in the purchase and operation of cruise ships, he has undertaken casino licensing, ship registration, operational certificates, and personnel and vendor contracts. He has litigated numerous cases involving personal injuries, contract disputes and government regulations.
He is an advocate of alternative dispute resolution, particularly by mediation or arbitration. He was a founder, and first president, of the Miami Maritime Arbitration Council. He has participated in arbitration of numerous disputes, both as counsel and as an appointed arbitrator.
He is an active member of the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Educators, HospitalityLawyers.com, International Travel and Tourism Advocates, Miami International Arbitration Society, and the Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute. He has served on several governmental committees to recommend marine environmental protection regulations.
He has authored materials and presented lectures on a wide range of topics for both lawyers and industry professionals. Publications include articles in the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly, Cornell Hospitality Research Reports and the Journal of Travel and Tourism Marketing.