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Christopher M. Malone

President and Director

‘Keeper of the values’ – and trusted advocate for the legal needs of business and life

It was personal curiosity that drew Chris Malone to the field of general civil practice to serve the needs of small and medium-sized companies, contractors, licensed professionals, self-employed individuals, business owners, and people or families in need of legal support. Committing nearly his entire career to ThompsonMcMullan, Chris today serves as president and managing director of the firm, overseeing operations and setting the course for the future.

He is also “the keeper of the values,” the one who sets the bar for how the firm will work together and function. It’s the role he views as most important: Upholding the firm’s foundational core values – fairness, integrity, equal dignity, balance, service, and civility – and ensuring the six elements are sustained and transitioned to the new and younger generation of lawyers who are building the firm’s future.

He was in their shoes once, too. As a young attorney, fresh off a clerkship at the Supreme Court of Virginia, he was in the process of interviewing at numerous firms until Oct. 31, 1980, when he met founders John Thompson and Grice McMullan. “I called my wife afterwards and said, ‘We can call it off. That’s where I want to work.’”

It was an immediate sense of integrity and fairness in the air that drew him to the firm, where Chris today serves clients in general business and real estate matters – contracts, entity formation, and everyday legal counsel – and represents businesses and individuals in litigation across a variety of matters in Virginia and U.S. courts, with a significant emphasis on construction litigation. In addition, Chris maintains an extensive adoption and family law practice. As an adoptive parent of three himself, Chris personally understands the adoption process and assists families in initiating and finalizing adoptions to establish “forever homes” for children. Should contested issues arise, he represents adoptive parents and child-placement agencies in resolving disputes.

“There is no greater affirmation, for me, than for somebody to say that they want me to be their lawyer,” Chris says. “Our firm values are very clear: If someone has been bold enough to place their trust in us, then there is a great deal of responsibility that attaches to that. Every matter that comes through our door is important, and if we agree to it, we have the responsibility to give it our full attention regardless of the size or the issue.”

As an ordained permanent deacon in the Catholic Church, Chris devotes his free time in part to service in ministry to the Diocese of Richmond. He is assigned to serve at The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in the Fan District.

Chris is also actively involved with business and charitable organizations through the community. He was the 2016 John C. Kenny Pro Bono Award recipient from the Richmond Bar Association, an award presented annually to individuals or firms that show a dedication to pro bono legal services to greater Richmond’s poor and underserved. Chris regularly provides ongoing legal consultation and advice to a number of charitable organizations devoted to services for the homeless and disabled. A native of Alexandria, Chris lives in Hanover County with his wife of four decades, Nancy. His four grown children all live and work in the Richmond area. He enjoys hiking, camping, and the great outdoors.

“I don’t see it as a balancing act,” Chris once told Virginia Lawyers Weekly, when asked how he balances his business and personal life. “We live only one life and ought to use all of our time well in meeting our obligations as spouses, parents, lawyers and members of the community — all of which are equally important and sacred.”

Representative Experience

Representative experience

  • Assisting in the formation of commercial entities including corporations, limited liability companies, partnerships, and joint ventures
  • Assisting clients in resolving commercial disputes through mediation and arbitration.
  • Providing ongoing advice on legal matters including contract formation, employment matters, acquisition and mergers, real estate acquisition and sales, and related matters
  • Representation of medical professionals and other professionals before state licensing and regulatory boards
  • Closely advising adoptive parents and child placement agencies to navigate the adoption process and find “forever homes” for children

Recognition

  • 2018 Greater Richmond Bar Foundation’s Benjamin Rice Lacy, IV Volunteer of the Year Award Recipient
  • 2016 John C. Kenny Pro Bono Award Recipient, Richmond Bar Association
  • AV Peer Review Rated in Martindale-Hubbell
  • Selected by peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the fields of Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships); Closely Held Companies and Family Businesses Law; Commercial Litigation; Construction Law; Family Law; Litigation – Construction; Litigation – Municipal; Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants; and Personal Injury Litigation – Plaintiffs (Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, SC) (2013 – 2020)
  • Selected by The Best Lawyers in America©as Richmond Litigation – Municipal “Lawyer of the Year” (2017 and 2019)
  • Selected by The Best Lawyers in America© as Richmond Construction Law “Lawyer of the Year” (2014)
  • Selected by The Best Lawyers in America©as Richmond Litigation – Municipal “Lawyer of the Year” (2017)
  • Selected to the Super Lawyers Virginia List, Top 100 in the state (2012 – 2013, 2015)
  • Selected to the Super Lawyers Virginia List, Top 50 in Richmond (2011 – 2015)
  • Selected to the Super Lawyers Virginia List, Business Litigation category, (2008 – 2019)
  • Virginia Business Magazine’s “Legal Elite,” Construction Law category (2015 – 2018)
  • Virginia Business Magazine’s “Legal Elite,” Civil Litigation category (2009 – 2014)
  • Named to Leaders in the Law, Virginia Lawyer’s Weekly (2008)

Education

  • University of Virginia School of Law, J.D., 1979
  • College of William and Mary, B.A. History, 1976
  • Clerk to Chief Staff Attorney, Clerk to Justice Richard H. Poff, Supreme Court of Virginia, 1979-1981

Admissions

  • All Virginia courts including the Supreme Court of Virginia
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Virginia
  • U.S Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

Affiliations

  • Virginia Bar Association
  • Bar Association of the City of Richmond
    • Served on the Administration of Justice, Continuing Legal Education, Pro Bono, and Public Relations Committees; past member, Board of Directors
  • Hanover County Bar Association
  • Greater Richmond Bar Foundation
    • Member, Board of Directors, 2001-2012
    • Past President, 2008-2010
  • Member, Executive Board, Heart of Virginia Council of the Boy Scouts of America
  • Board of Visitors, Saint Gertrude High School
    • Chairman, 2015-2018
    • Member, 2011-2018
  • Board of Directors, Saint Francis Home
  • Executive Committee, St. Thomas More Society
  • Member, Board of Directors, Chesterfield Alternatives, Inc. and its related entities
  • Member of Deacon Council of the Catholic Diocese of Richmond
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