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Staff Bio

William Thoms, J.D.
Affiliated Staff
Phone: (320)632-5038
Email: billthoms@live.com

Bill Thoms has been interested in transportation since his formative years as a crew caller for the now-defunct New York, New Haven & Hartford RR while attending law school. He has written and lectured extensively in the field of transportation law, with a particular interest in railroad issues.

Research Interests

  • Railroad and Airline Labor Law
  • Effects of Deregulation on Surface Transportation
  • Passenger Transportation
  • Rural Transportation Needs

Recent Research Activities/Major Programs of Activity

  • Canadian-American Legal Issues (with Michigan State University)
  • Railroad Law A Decade After Deregulation (with Frank Dooley), Quorum Books, 1994
  • Airline Labor Law (with Frank Dooley), Quorum Books, 1992
  • Pilots, Personality and Performance (with Sheila Deitz), Quorum Books, 1991


  • 2001-2006, Private Practice, Denver, CO
  • 1996-2001, Of Counsel, Johnson & Associates, Grand Forks, ND
  • 1973-1995, Professor of Law, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND


  • M.A., M.C.L., J.S.D., Tulane University, 1971-81
  • J.D., Yale University 1964
  • B.A., Colgate University 1961

Professional Memberships/Affiliations

  • State Bar Association of North Dakota
  • Colorado Bar Association
  • Western Social Science Association
NDSU Dept 2880P.O. Box 6050Fargo, ND 58108-6050