“After 30 years with the federal government, I look forward to advising our clients on regulatory, enforcement, and policy issues arising from their advertising and marketing.”

Thomas B. Pahl

Of Counsel


Tom has broad and deep governmental and regulatory experience through nearly 30 years of federal service at the Federal Trade Commission, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and the United States Senate.  He brings this experience to bear in providing critical informed advice and counsel to food and drug companies who have or may have matters before federal agencies and other parts of the federal government.

Past Experience:

At the FTC, Tom most recently was its Acting Director of its Bureau of Consumer Protection, with responsibility for its law enforcement, regulatory, and policy work, including food, drug, and dietary supplement matters. 


In previous stints at the FTC, he had been an Assistant Director in its Division of Financial Practices and its Division of Advertising Practices, where many of his duties involved law enforcement and policy activities relating to food, drug, and dietary supplement advertising.  Tom also earlier had served as an Attorney Advisor for FTC Commissioners Orson Swindle and FTC Mary Azcuenaga. providing them with valued advice and counsel on consumer protection and competition matters. 


At the CFPB, Tom most recently was its Deputy Director, with responsibility for all the agency’s activities and operations.  He previously was the CFPB’s Policy Associate Director for the Division of Research Markets and Regulation, where he led many of the agency’s rulemaking, guidance, economic research, and policy initiatives.  In a prior stint at the CFPB, Tom was a Managing Counsel in the Office of Regulations, with responsibility for regulatory and policy initiatives relating to debt collection, credit reporting, and other consumer financial services. 


At the United States Senate, Tom was a counsel for the United States Senate Judiciary Committee.   He advised the Chairman of the Committee and its members on antitrust, consumer protection, and privacy issues associated with proposed legislation, agency activities, and other developments.   


Finally, Tom was an adjunct professor at George Mason School of Law for several years.  He taught a course on unfair trade practices and competition, which covered government consumer protection, Lanham Act advertising, business torts, and trademark law.   


Tom’s primary areas of focus at OFW Law will be on advising and counseling food, drug, and dietary supplement clients on their advertising and marketing activities relating to the FTC, Food and Drug Administration, and the National Advertising Division of the Better Business Bureau.   

Leadership and Community:


Tom has been active in many endeavors in fostering and improving the legal profession. He recently helped create and joined the board of the CFPB Alumni Association.  For several years, Tom was the Co-Vice-Chairman of the American Bar Association, Section of Business Law, Consumer Financial Affairs Committee, Federal and State Trade Practices Subcommittee.  Finally, after the demise of communism in Eastern Europe, he spent a year in Romania working as a volunteer on law and market reform for the American Bar Association’s Central and Eastern European Law Initiative.


Tom is active in his local community.  He is a regular volunteer working at the Manna Food Center in Montgomery County, Maryland, and he recently spent a year helping to run a farm at the Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land, which grows produce for the indigent in Washington, D.C.  Tom is an avid hockey player, playing in the local adult beer league and in the Gerihatricks senior league.  He further is very interested in history, volunteering at the Lincoln Cottage site in Washington, D.C., as well as recently completing writing with his mother an extensive family history documenting his family’s role as some of the first settlers on the Minnesota frontier.  He has hiked twice the Pilgrims Way trail which Chaucer’s pilgrims walked to Canterbury Cathedral in southeast England, and he plans to hike it once again in the fall of 2023 with his son, Tom Jr.

Practice Areas



  • Northwestern University School of Law, J.D., cum laude.

    College of St. Thomas, B.A., Economics, summa cum laude

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