Thomas Plank

Prof. Thomas Plank

Joel A. Katz Distinguished Professor of Law, University of Tennessee College of Law

Professor Plank joined the UT faculty in 1994 and became the Joel A. Katz Distinguished Professor of Law in 2004. His scholarly interests include the nature of property, the relationship between bankruptcy and non-bankruptcy law, and the historical development and comparison of commercial law and property law systems. He is a nationally recognized expert on mortgage backed and asset backed securities. Before joining the UT faculty, he was a partner with Kutak Rock LLP specializing in real estate finance, commercial finance, bankruptcy, and securities, in particular serving as issuer’s counsel and bankruptcy counsel in securitization transactions. Since joining the UT faculty he has served as an expert witness on securitization and other bankruptcy and commercial law matters, and as a consultant for securitization law firms, providing advice on bankruptcy, commercial law, and real estate issues in connection with securitizations and other transactions. During the 2002-2003 academic year, Professor Plank was a visiting Professor of Law at the Notre Dame Law School.

Professor Plank graduated with honors from Princeton University with a degree in history and a Certificate of Proficiency in Russian Area Studies and then served three years in the United States Marine Corps, including eight months in Vietnam as an infantry platoon commander. He graduated 5th in his class from the University of Maryland School of Law, where he was Editor-in-Chief of the Maryland Law Review. He was a law clerk for the Chief Judge of the Maryland Court of Appeals, an associate with Piper & Marbury in Baltimore, MD, and an assistant attorney general for the State of Maryland. Initially, his practice included a wide variety of transactions and litigation, including a four month trial on the constitutionality of the Maryland public school finance system and oral arguments in the United States Supreme Court and federal and state appellate courts. He then concentrated his practice in real estate, commercial finance, public finance and securities transactions.


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