David Concannon is a trial lawyer practicing in the areas of commercial litigation, intellectual property, entertainment, sports and recreation, wrongful death and products liability.
After clerking for Chief U.S. District Court Judge Louis C. Bechtle in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Mr. Concannon was associated with Kohn, Swift & Graf in Philadelphia before he founded his own firm in Wayne, Pennsylvania in 2002. The firm, which became Concannon & Charles in 2016, has a diverse nationwide practice and an international client base. The firm expanded to Ocean City, New Jersey in 2014 and Sun Valley, Idaho in 2017. Mr. Concannon divides his time between both offices.
Mr. Concannon has tried numerous cases to verdict in state and federal courts across the United States. He has not lost a trial since 1995. Some of his successes include achieving a $3.9 million jury verdict to enforce an oral agreement for the sale of a business, a $3.1 million verdict in a misappropriation of trade secrets case, a $30 million punitive damages verdict in a commercial litigation case, one of the top 50 jury verdicts in the United States in 2005, the second highest jury verdict in Pennsylvania, and one of the highest jury verdicts ever recorded in a tortious interference case. He has successfully defended hundreds of millions of dollars in claims asserted against the firm’s clients, and his victory in the internationally-televised $25 million Skiles v. Lamartek, Inc. trial of a wrongful death case in Palm Beach County, Florida was chosen as one of the “Top 10 Defense Verdicts of 2016.”
Mr. Concannon is also an expert in legal issues affecting exploration. In 2002, he founded Explorer Consulting, a highly specialized consulting practice that advises clients on “the business of exploration,” including organizing and financing expeditions, producing documentaries for film and television, legal issues, and monetizing intellectual property rights. Mr. Concannon has extensive experience in this area, having served as General Counsel to several organizations, including The Explorers Club and the X-Prize Foundation. He has led numerous expeditions, including expeditions to explore the Titanic and to find and recover the Apollo F-1 rocket engines that launched men to the moon. In 2014, Mr. Concannon and the team he led for Bezos Expeditions' Apollo F-1 Search & Recovery Project were awarded The Explorers Club Citation of Merit for “an outstanding feat of exploration.” This is the same recognition bestowed upon Dr. Robert Ballard for the discovery of the Titanic in 1985, and to the first American team to summit Mt. Everest in 1963.
New Jersey, 1991
U.S. Supreme Court, 1995
U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal:
1st, 3rd, 4th & 9th.
U.S. District Courts:
Eastern District of Pennsylvania
Middle District of Pennsylvania
District of New Jersey
District of Idaho
Pro Hac Vice admissions:
California (state & federal courts)
Florida (state & federal courts)
Illinois (state court)
Louisiana (federal court)
Maine (federal court)
Missouri (federal court)
North Carolina (federal court)
New Hampshire (federal court)
New York (state court)
Rhode Island (federal court)
Tennessee (state court)
Texas (state & federal courts)
Utah (federal court)
Virginia (federal court)
West Virginia (federal court)
Founder & Principal, Concannon & Charles, Sun Valley, Idaho and Ocean City, New Jersey, 2002-Present.
Founder & Principal, Explorer Consulting, Sun Valley, Idaho, 2002-Present.
Of Counsel, Feldman & Pinto, P.C., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 2000-2002.
Associate, Kohn, Swift & Graf, P.C., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1995-2000.
Law Clerk, Chief Judge Louis C. Bechtle, United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1992-1995.
Associate, Conrad O’Brien Gellman & Rohn, P.C., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1991-1992.
Professional & Community Involvement
Advisory Board, Schmidt Marine Technology Partners, San Francisco, California, 2018-Present
The Explorers Club, New York, New York.
Chair, Rolex Expedition Watch Committee, 2018-Present.
Vice President, Flag & Honors, 2015-2018.
Member, Flag & Honors Committee, 2006-2018 (Chair, 2015-2018).
Member, Bylaws Committee, 2011-2015.
Member, Board of Directors, 2003-2006.
Chair, Legal Committee (equivalent of General Counsel), 1997-2001.
Chair, Philadelphia Chapter, 1997-2001.
Member, Board of Directors, Sun Valley Community Chest, Sun Valley, Idaho, 2016-2019.
General Counsel, Rebreather Education & Safety Association, 2010-Present.
Outside Counsel, American Academy of Underwater Sciences, 2014-Present.
Member, Board of Trustees, Holt-Elwell Memorial Foundation, East Hebron, New Hampshire, 2009-2017.
Pro bono counsel, Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, 1991-2020.
U.S. General Counsel, Anglo-Danish Maritime Archaeology Team, 2003-2009.
Member, Board of Directors, Sea-Space Symposium, 2003-2006.
General Counsel, X-Prize Foundation, Los Angeles, California, 2003-2006.
General Counsel, Academy of Underwater Arts & Sciences, 2001-2005.
Sampling of Significant Court Decisions
R.M.S. Titanic, Inc. v. Wrecked & Abandoned Vessel, No. 2:93CV902, 2020 WL 2835826 (E.D. Va. May 18, 2020) - The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia granted a motion to modify the court’s previous July 28, 2000 order prohibiting a salvage company, R.M.S. Titanic, Inc. ("RMST"), from cutting into or detaching any portion of the R.M.S. Titanic without a court order, to minimally cut into the wreck only as necessary to access the Marconi radio room and retrieve the artifacts found there, including the equipment used to send the Titanic’s final distress calls.
Advanced Fluid Systems, Inc. v. Huber, 295 F. Supp. 3d 467 (M.D. Pa. 2018), aff'd, — F.3d — , 2020 WL 2078298 (3rd Cir. 2020) - After a six-day bench trial in a misappropriation of trade secrets case involving the launch system for the Antares rocket, the court issued a 54-page memorandum opinion and awarded $3,096,009 in compensatory, exemplary, and punitive damages, to the firm's client, Advanced Fluid Systems, Inc. The trial court's decision was affirmed unanimously by the 3rd U.S. Circuit of Appeals on April 30, 2020.
Advanced Fluid Systems, Inc. v. Huber, 28 F. Supp. 3d 306 (M.D. Pa. 2014) - Finding that trade secret protection applies to more than just a company’s intellectual property; and clarifying elements of claims for tortious interference with contractual relationships, misappropriation of trade secrets, and violations of the Lanham Act and Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
DeWolf v. Kohler, 452 S.W.3d 373 (Tx. App. - Houston [14th Dist.] 2014) - Upholding defense verdict and pretrial dismissal of several defendants in a $15 million wrongful death and product liability action.
CGB Occupational Therapy, Inc. v. RHA Health Servs., Inc., 499 F.3d 184 (3rd Cir. 2007) - Finding a 7:1 ratio of punitive damages to compensatory damages constitutional in a tortious interference with contractual relations case and observing “litigants should not have to face something akin to medieval trial by combat to resolve a basic business dispute.”
R.M.S. Titanic, Inc. v. Haver, 171 F.3d 943 (4th Cir.), cert. denied, 528 U.S. 825 (1999) - Restoring access to the wreck site of the R.M.S. Titanic for exploration and photography and finding that intellectual property rights are not part of exclusive salvage rights.
Sampling of Significant Jury and Non-Jury Verdicts achieved at Trial
Advanced Fluid Systems v. Huber, Civ. No. 1:13-CV-3087, U.S. Dist. Court, M.D. Pa. (2018) - Non-jury verdict for plaintiff and judgment entered in the amount of $3.1 million for misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of fiduciary duty, and aiding and abetting breach of duty. Stipulated attorneys' fees of $450,000 were later added to the judgment.
Skiles v. Lamartek, Inc., 2012-CA-013132, Fla. Cir., 15th Jud. Cir., Palm Beach Co., Florida (2016) - Defense verdict in a $25 million wrongful death and products liability action.
DeWolf v. Kohler, Cause No. 2010-46416, 165th Judicial District Court, Harris County, Texas (2013) - Defense verdict for one defendant and pretrial dismissal of two other defendants in a $15 million wrongful death and products liability action.
CGB Occupational Therapy, Inc. v. Sunrise Assisted Living, Inc., Civ. No. 00-4918, U.S. Dist. Court, E.D. Pa. (2002 and 2005) - $2 million and $30 million verdicts in favor of plaintiff in a tortious interference with contractual relations case.
Milandco, Ltd., Inc. v. Wolgin, Civ. No. 97-8119, U.S. Dist. Court, E.D. Pa. (2002) – Defense verdict on a $120 million promissory estoppel claim, and pretrial dismissal of claims for breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract and misrepresentation, in case involving financing of a golf course development in Palm Beach County, Florida.
Wood Beverage Company, Inc. v. Clement & Muller, Inc., Case No. 1998-015855, Delaware County, Pennsylvania C.C.P. (2002) - $3.9 million verdict in favor of plaintiff in a breach of contract case to enforce an oral agreement for the sale of a business.
Special Master, Comark, Inc. v. Harris Corp., U.S.D.C., E.D.Pa., No. 95-CV-2123 (Bechtle, J.) - International intellectual property dispute.
Special Master, Mowrey v. Ogden-Martin Systems of Babylon, Inc., et al., Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, August Term 1995, No. 3299 (Bernstein, J.) - Multi-party toxic tort and personal injury litigation.
Juris Doctor, Widener University School of Law, Wilmington, Delaware, 1990.
Diplomate, The Hague Academy of International Law, The Hague, Netherlands, 1990.
International Environmental Law, The University of Nairobi School of Law, Nairobi, Kenya, Summer 1989.
Bachelor of Science, Management and Finance, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, 1988.
Corporate & Business Law
Sports & Recreation
Maritime & Admiralty
2010 - present
2010 - present
Fellow, The Explorers Club, 1996-Present.
Member, Sea-Space Symposium, 2000-Present.
David Concannon is married to Kim Frank of Sun Valley, Idaho and Ocean City, New Jersey. They have four children in their teens and twenties.
An avid explorer, Mr. Concannon has been scuba diving and climbing for more than 35 years. He has made several deep submersible dives to depths from 1,000 to 16,000 feet. He has organized and led several major international expeditions, including three expeditions to explore wreck of the R.M.S. Titanic; an expedition that discovered the world’s deepest wooden shipwreck, a slave ship resting 16,000 feet deep in the heart of the Bermuda Triangle; an expedition to explore the H.M.H.S. Britannic, sister ship to the R.M.S. Titanic; and expeditions to find and recover the Apollo F-1 engines that launched men to the moon.
Mr. Concannon enjoys spending time with family, skiing, motorcycling, photography and playing guitar. He wrote the foreword for the bestselling book, The Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Travel, as well as a variety of articles and book chapters for publications in the United States, Canada, Ireland and England. His writing and photography have been published in a variety of books and magazines, including Forbes, The Explorers Journal, Sidetracked, Naval History, Fathoms, duPont Registry, Ask Men and SVPN. He regularly speaks to audiences around the world on a diverse range of topics, including leadership, exploration and the law.