R. Craig Wood


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  • Washington and Lee University School of Law, JD, magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, 1984
  • University of Virginia, MEd, 1975
  • University of Virginia, BA, 1973
  • Virginia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia
  • U.S. Supreme Court

Board of Directors, Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys, 1996-1999

Member, Defense Research Institute

Chairman, Young Lawyers Committee of Litigation Section, 1989-1990; Member, Board of Governors, Litigation Section, 1990-present; Chairman, Board of Governors, Litigation Section, 1996-1997, Virginia State Bar

Board of Directors, 1998-2003; President, 2001-2002, Education Law Association

Board of Directors, Council of School Attorneys, National School Boards Association, 2005-2009

Chairman, Virginia Council of School Attorneys, 1996-1997

Member, 1984-present; Member, Boyd-Graves Conference, 1988-2008, Virginia Bar Association

Permanent Member, 4th Circuit Judicial Conference

Craig is an experienced trial lawyer who has taken more than 100 cases to trial in the areas of management-side employment, education, commercial and professional liability law. He served as the office managing partner in McGuireWoods' Charlottesville office from 2000-2009 and as head of the Charlottesville office litigation department from 1990-2000. His peer reviews include an AV rating in Martindale Hubbell and inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America every year since 1993.

Craig regularly defends businesses, higher education institutions and school boards in a variety of employment and regulatory compliance matters. He conducts training on union avoidance, manages union campaigns for employers, and handles labor disputes. He tries cases in state and federal courts in Virginia, and handles appeals in the Virginia and U.S. Supreme Courts, and the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals. He regularly handles employment matters before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Department of Labor, and other state and federal agencies.

Craig is a highly regarded lecturer and author. He regularly speaks at the annual meetings of the National School Boards Association, the Education Law Association, the Local Government Attorneys of Virginia and the National Federation of High School Athletic Associations, and lectures on litigation and ethics matters for Virginia CLE and other state and national organizations. Additionally, Craig has spoken before the Virginia Bar Association, the Governor’s Conference on Education Law, and the Council of Independent Colleges of Virginia. He teaches Trial Advocacy at the University of Virginia School of Law, Higher Education Law at Washington and Lee Law School, and is on the faculty of the National Trial Advocacy College. He has taught legal ethics for the professionalism courses of the Virginia State Bar.

Craig is active in state and national leadership positions. He has served as chairman of the Litigation Section of the Virginia State Bar, chairman of the Council of School Attorneys of the Virginia School Boards Association and president of the Education Law Association. He was president of the Thomas Jefferson Chapter of the American Inns of Court, and has served on the boards of directors of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys, the Council of School Attorneys of the National School Boards Association, Albemarle First Bank, and the Boards of Trustees of Covenant College and the Covenant College Foundation. He is a permanent member of the 4th Circuit Judicial Conference.

Craig took his law degree magna cum laude from Washington and Lee University Law School. He earned his undergraduate degree and Masters in Education at the University of Virginia, and completed coursework at Emory University Law School.

In the News

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R. Craig Wood
T: +1 434 977 2558F: +1 434 980 2274Court Square Building
310 Fourth Street, N.E.
Suite 300
Charlottesville, VA 22902-1288

Representation of a state high school athletic association in state and federal court litigation involving athletic eligibility, Title IX and disciplinary sanctions.

Representation of schools and key personnel in contract negotiations and drafting, and every aspect of school governance and operations.

Representation of Fortune 100 and 500 clients in employment discrimination litigation.

Representation of Fortune 500 companies in union elections and labor disputes.

Representation of a major state university in malpractice, employment and contract litigation.

2016 recipient of the Virginia High School League’s Torch of Honor

Permanent Member; 4th Circuit Judicial Conference

Named "Lawyer of the Year," Charlottesville Employment Law - Management, Best Lawyers in America, Woodward/White, Inc., 2015

Named "Lawyer of the Year," Charlottesville Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants, Best Lawyers in America, Woodward/White, Inc., 2014, 2016

Named "Charlottesville Employment Law - Management Lawyer of the Year," Best Lawyers, 2012

Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, Education Law, Employment Law - Management, Labor Law - Management, Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants, Woodward/White, Inc., 1993-2014, 2016-2018

Named to "Virginia Super Lawyers" Employment and Labor, Schools and Education, Civil Litigation Defense, Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, 2007-2011, 2013-2017

Recipient, M.A. McGhehey Award, Outstanding Contributions to Field of Education Law, 2009, Education Law Association

Named to “Virginia’s Legal Elite,” Civil Litigation, Virginia Business Magazine, 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2017

Co-author, "NLRB Columbia Decision Poses Higher Education Obstacles," Law360, August 29, 2016
Co-author, "Between a Rock and a Hard Place: A Discussion of Issues that Frequently Arise in Sexual Misconduct-Related Litigation Against Colleges and Universities," NACUANOTES, The National Association of College and University Attorneys, Vol. 14 No. 4, May 18, 2016
Author, "Is Your Business Cyber-Savvy: The Essentials of an 'Acceptable Use' Policy," Blue Ridge Business Journal, February 2009
Co-author, "The Effects of Recent Developments to the ADA and the FMLA on the Intersection between the ADA, FMLA and HIPAA," National School Boards Association, February 2009
Author, "Military Family Leave Expanded: What Board Members Need to Know," National School Boards Association, October, 2008
Speaker, "The Bar Has Been Set High: Are Your Athletics Policies and Procedures in Compliance with the Law?," Virginia School Boards Association, Webinar, October 6, 2016
Panelist, "Handling Federal Investigations of Public Schools," Local Government Attorneys of Virginia Spring 2015 Conference, April 23, 2015
Co-Speaker, "Best Practices for Board and Staff Orientation," 12th Annual Nonprofit Seminar - Charities: More Change on the Horizon?, October 9, 2014
Faculty, "Motions Practice," Trying Cases in the Western District of Virginia, Virginia CLE Program, December 12, 2013
Speaker, "Critical Legal Issues that Could Blind-side You," 2013 Legislative Conference, Virginia Association of School Superintendents, October 21, 2013
Co-speaker, "Effective Management of Staff," 11th Annual Nonprofit Seminar: Best Practices in Nonprofit Management, October 15 & 29, 2013
Federal Agencies Respond to Concerns About Student Privacy, Password Protected, December 12, 2017