Mark F. (Thor) Hearne, II

Thor Hearne, a partner with Larson O’Brien LLP, has earned a national reputation for his work in complex federal and state litigation and appeals, especially matters involving property rights, constitutional law and election issues.  Thor has represented more than 1,000 landowners in federal property rights litigation arising under the Trails Act.  Thor was named one of the nation’s top-fifty “Litigation Trailblazers and Pioneers” by the National Law Journal and featured as a pre-eminent national trial and appellate attorney for his work in property rights litigation.  Thor was elected to membership in the prestigious, invitation-only Owners’ Counsel of America (OCA) association of property-rights lawyers (only one lawyer from each state and the District of Columbia is admitted to OCA).  Thor serves as the OCA member for the District of Columbia.
Thor has argued before the U.S. Supreme Court, several U.S. courts of appeals (including the Federal, Fourth, Sixth, and Eleventh Circuits), and the supreme courts of Florida, Michigan, Missouri, and Kansas.  The Commonwealth of Virginia retained Thor to be Virginia’s lead trial and appellate counsel defending Virginia against a constitutional challenge to the commonwealth’s election laws.  Thor and Virginia prevailed in both trial court and with a unanimous decision in favor of Virginia in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
Thor is a frequent and highly sought-after speaker at national legal conferences, including the Brigham-Kanner Property Rights Conference at William & Mary Law School, where he serves as a member of the Advisory Council.  Thor has spoken internationally at property rights and property law.  Thor addressed international property law and property rights conferences at Tsinghua University School of Law in Beijing China and the Universiteit Leiden at The Hague in the Netherlands.  For almost a decade, Thor has served as a faculty member on the American Law Institute Eminent Domain and Land Valuation Litigation Conference.
Thor has written a number of law reviews and other articles on property rights and constitutional law.  The American Bar Association asked Thor to write one of the leading articles on the Trails Act, The Trails Act: Railroading Property Owners and Taxpayers for More Than a Quarter Century, Real Property, Trust & Estate L.J., Vol. 115, Spring 2010.  And Thor authored “The Fifth Amendment Requires the Government to Pay an Owner Interest Equal to What the Owner Could Have Earned Had the Government Paid the Owner the Fair-Market Value of Their Property on the Date the Government Took the Owner’s Property,” Brigham-Kanner Property Rights Conference Journal, Vol. 1, September 2012..

Advisory Council Committee: 
Takings / Tribal Claims