Biography

galligan

Thomas C. Galligan Jr., LSU Interim President

Thomas C. Galligan Jr. assumed office as LSU’s Interim President on January 1, 2020. In this role, he is both the chief executive of LSU’s eight campuses and leader of the university’s flagship campus in Baton Rouge.

Prior to his appointment as Interim President, Galligan served the Dean of LSU’s Paul M. Hebert Law Center, holding both the Dodson & Hooks Endowed Chair in Maritime Law and the James Huntington and Patricia Kleinpeter Odom Professorship of Law. A true teacher at heart, he has taught numerous classes in the fields of Admiralty Law and Torts while serving as dean.

From 2010 to 2016, Galligan served as the President of Colby-Sawyer College, a private liberal arts based college in New London, New Hampshire. During his presidency, the college doubled its academic offerings, started a distance education program, and made significant strides in the fields of sustainability, diversity, and affordability.  Galligan also held a faculty position and regularly taught.

Prior to leading Colby-Sawyer, Galligan served as Dean of the University of Tennessee’s College of Law from 1998 to 2010.

He started his academic career at LSU in 1986 as a Professor of Law. During his first tenure at the university, students named him the Outstanding LSU Professor six times. From 1995-1998, he also served as the Executive Director of the Louisiana Judicial College. 

Galligan was named the 2018 Louisiana Bar Foundation Distinguished Professor. In addition, he has served as a member and chair of the American Bar Association Accreditation Committee.

Galligan is a frequent continuing legal education speaker on his areas of expertise, having given more than 250 speeches and presentations to judges, lawyers, and others about Torts, Admiralty, Complex Litigation, Professionalism, and more. In the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, he testified three times before congressional committees considering amendments to the Death on the High Seas Act and other applicable maritime statutes.

His scholarship has been cited by numerous courts including the United States Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, various United States District Courts, the Louisiana Supreme Court, and various State Appellate Courts.

He holds an A.B. in Political Science from Stanford University, a J.D. from Seattle University School of Law where he graduated summa cum laude and first in his class, and an LL.M. from the Columbia University Law School.

Galligan resides in Baton Rouge with his wife Susan, and is the father of four children.