Donald J. Wolfe, Jr., a retired Potter Anderson partner, is the former chair of the firm’s Executive Committee, a position in which he served from 2009 through 2014. Prior to his election as chair of the firm, he served two terms as Practice Group Leader of the Firm's Corporate Group and as a member of the firm's Executive Committee.
Don's practice focused on complex corporate litigation in the Court of Chancery, and included counseling of boards of directors and special board committees of Delaware corporations with respect to issues of fiduciary duty and internal corporate governance.
He has presented at a wide variety of corporate law seminars and symposia around the country, including The Tulane Institute of Corporate Law (where he serves as Co-Chair of the Planning Committee), The Association of General Counsel, The Harvard School of Law, Columbia School of Law, The University of Pennsylvania School of Law, and The University of Pennsylvania Institute of Law and Economics (where he serves as a member of the Board of Advisors), The Annual Institute on Corporate Securities and Related Aspects of Mergers and Acquisitions, sponsored by the New York City Bar Association, as well as a variety of seminars sponsored by The Practicing Law Institute and the American and Delaware State Bar Associations. He has also participated as a delegate representing the State of Delaware and the Delaware Secretary of State on international missions to promote the benefits of Delaware's court system and its corporate law.
Don is the co-author of an annually updated treatise examining litigation practice in the Delaware Court of Chancery and entitled Corporate and Commercial Practice in the Delaware Court of Chancery (Lexis Law Publishing). The second edition of the treatise was published in 2018, marking the 20th anniversary of its initial publication. The work is recognized as a leading authority on Delaware corporate practice and has been cited by the Delaware courts in approximately 500 published opinions.
Representative Cases and Engagements
He has participated in well over 200 reported decisions of the Delaware courts, including many of the more significant Delaware corporate decisions of the Court of Chancery and the Delaware Supreme Court over the past forty years, among them: Weinberger v. UOP, Inc., 457 A.2d 701 (Del. Supr. 1983); Smith v. Van Gorkom, 488 A.2d 858 (Del. Supr. 1985); Revlon, Inc. v. MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings, Inc., 506 A.2d 173 (Del. Supr. 1985); Ivanhoe Partners v. Newmont Mining Corp., 535 A.2d 1334 (Del. Supr. 1987); Paramount Corp. v. Time Inc., 571 A.2d 1140 (Del. Supr. 1990); Airgas, Inc. v. Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., 8 A.3rd 1182 (Del. Supr. 2010); Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. v. Airgas, Inc., (6 A.3rd 48 (Del. Ch. 2011)); Third Point LLC v. Ruprecht; Hewlett v. Hewlett-Packard Company, 2002 WL 549137 (Del. Ch. Apr. 8, 2002); Hewlett v. Hewlett Packard Company, 2002 WL 818091 (Del. Ch. Apr. 30, 2002); Omnicare, Inc. v. NCS Healthcare, Inc., 818 A.2d 914 (Del. Supr. 2003); Akorn, Inc. v. Fresenius Kabi A.G. 2018 WL 471937 (Del. Ch. Oct. 1, 2018); California State Teachers Retirement System v. Alvaerez, 179 A. 3d 824 (Del. Supr. 2018), cert den., 2018 WL 3093913 (U.S. Del., Oct. 1, 2018.); In re Cornerstone Therapeutics, Inc. Stockholder Litigation, 2015 WL 2394045, (Del. Supr., May 14, 2015); Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Indiana Elec. Workers Pension Trust Fund IBEW 95 A.3d 1264 (2014); In re El Paso Shareholder Litigation, 2012 WL 653845 (Del. Ch. Feb. 29, 2012); In re Delphi Financial Group Shareholder Litigation, 2012 WL 729232 (March 6, 2012); In re Massey Energy Co., 2011 WL 2176479 (Del. Ch. May 31, 2011); In re Cogent Inc. Shareholders Litigation, 2010 WL 4146179 (Del. Ch. Oct. 15, 2010); In re Dollar Thrifty Shareholder Litigation, 2010 WL 3503471 (Del. Ch. Sept. 8, 2010); In re CNX Gas Corporation Shareholders Litig., 2010 WL 2291842, (Del. Ch. May 25, 2010); Hexion Specialty Chemicals, Inc. v. Huntsman Corp., 959 A.2d 47 (Del.Ch. 2008); Brinckerhoff v. Texas Eastern Products Pipeline Company, LLC, 2010 WL 175091 (Del. Ch. Jan. 15, 2010); Tooley v. Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette, Inc. 845 A.2d 1031 (Del. 2004); Gantler v. Stephens, 2009 Del. LEXIS 33 (Del. Jan. 27, 2009); Disney v. Walt Disney Co., 2004 WL 1776688 (Del. Ch. Aug. 6, 2004); In re Pure Resources, Inc. Shareholders Litigation, 808 A.2d 421 (Del. Ch. 2002); In re Cysive Shareholders Litigation, 836 A.2d 531 (Del. Ch. 2003); Grobow v. Perot, 526 A.2d 914 (Del. Ch. 1987); Aprahamian v. HBO & Co., 531 A.2d 1204 (Del. Ch. 1987); In re Tri-Star Pictures, Inc. Litigation, 634 A.2d 319 (Del. Supr. 1993); Hubbard v. Hollywood Park Realty Enterprises, 1991 WL 3151 (Del. Ch. 1991); Warner Communications Inc. v. Chris-Craft Industries, Inc., 583 A.2d 962 (Del. Ch. 1989); Siegman v. Columbia Pictures Entertainment, Inc., 576 A.2d 625 (Del. Ch. 1989); Insitituto Bancario Italiano SpA v. Hunter Engineering Co., Inc., 449 A.2d 210 (Del. Supr. 1982); Citron v. Fairchild Camera and Instrument Corp., 568 A.2d 53 (Del. Supr. 1989); Speiser v. Baker, 525 A.2d 1001 (Del. Ch. 1987).
He has also served as Delaware counsel for directors and board committees for such corporations as ABB, Ltd., Adelphia Communications Corporation, Airgas, Inc., Affiliated Computer Services, Inc., Alpha Natural Resources, Inc., AMF Holdings, Inc., Anheuser Busch Companies, Inc., Applied Materials, Inc., Ashworth, Inc., Bank of America Corporation, BarnesandNoble.com, Biosite, Inc., Cablevision Systems Corporation, Caterpillar, Inc., Citigroup, Inc., Clear Channel Outdoor Holdings, Inc., Coeur Mining, Inc., Computer Associates International, Inc., Cornerstone Therapeutics, Inc., Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., Cysive, Inc., Danfoss A/S, Dreamworks Animation SKG, Duncan Energy Partners, E. I. du Pont de Nemours & Co., Inc., EON Labs, Inc., Epicor Software Corporation, Erickson Air Crane Inc., Fairfield Communities, Inc., FEDEX Corporation, First Franklin Financial Corporation, Fox & Hound Restaurant Group, FTI Consulting Inc., G.P. Strategies Inc., Gemstar International Group Ltd., Genencor International, Inc., Golden Telecom, Inc., Goldman Sachs, Google Inc., Health Management Associates, Inc., Hewlett-Packard Company, Hilton Worldwide Holdings, Inc., Houlihan's Restaurants, Inc., Huntsman Corporation, IGEN, Inc., ImClone Systems Incorporated, infoUSA, Inc., Insituform East, Inc., Intel Corporation, IntercontinentalExchange, Inc., iPass, Inc., Kenetech Corporation, Levi Strauss Associates, Inc., Liberty Media Corporation, Lifepoint Hospitals, Inc., Lorillard, Inc., Marriott, Int'l., Inc., Maytag Corporation, Micro General Corporation, Motorola, Inc., National Amusements, Inc. (majority stockholder of Viacom), National Steel Corporation, Net2Phone, News Corporation, NRG Energy, Inc., OEC Corporation, Online-City Search, Inc., PeopleSoft, Inc., Pharmacia Corporation, Phonefree.com, PLM International Inc., Printcafe Software, Inc., Pure Resources, Inc., Quest Software, Rent-A-Center, Inc., Rental Service Corporation, Republic Industries, Inc., Rockefeller Center Properties, Inc., Siliconix Incorporated, Simon Property Group Inc., Softbank Corp., Sotheby's, Space Imaging, Inc., Stock Building Supply Holdings, Inc., Suntory Holdings Limited, Take Two Interactive Software, Inc., Teppco Partners, L.P., The Hertz Corporation, The Talbots, Inc., Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., The Vanguard Group, Inc., The Walt Disney Company, TicketMaster, Todd A-O Corporation, Triad Hospitals, Inc., Unico Corporation, UTStarcom, Inc., Utz Quality Foods, Inc., Venoco, Inc., Veterinary Centers of America, Inc., VMWare, Inc., Walmart Stores, Inc., Walter Industries, Inc., Wheeling-Pittsburgh Corporation, Whistlepig, LLC, Wynn Resorts, Ltd., Zynga, Inc.
- June 1, 2023
- August 18, 2022
- June 1, 2022
- August 19, 2021
- March 8, 2021
Temple University School of Law, J.D., cum laude, 1976
University of Delaware, B.A., History and Political Science, 1972
Bar & Court Admissions
- Delaware, 1976
- United States Supreme Court, 1981
Professional Activities and Honors
Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers; Chair, Delaware Chapter (2018 - 2020); Member, Emil Gumpert Award Committee (2018 - 2022); Member, Griffin Bell Award for Courageous Advocacy Committee (2023 - )
Fellow of the American Bar Foundation
Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America
Recognized by Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business as a leading practitioner in the area of Chancery litigation
Named "Lawyer of the Year 2014" in Delaware by The Best Lawyers in America for Litigation — Mergers and Acquisitions
Named “Lawyer of the Year 2011” in Delaware by The Best Lawyers in America for Bet-the-Company Litigation
Named to The Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America annually since 2006 and named to The Lawdragon Legends in 2016
Named to Delaware Super Lawyers Top 10 List for Business Litigation annually since 2007
Recognized by The Best Lawyers in America for more than 20 consecutive years (Bet-the-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, Corporate Law and Litigation - Mergers & Acquisitions)
Co-Chair, Planning Committee, Tulane Corporate Law Institute
Former member of the Council of the Corporate Section of the Delaware State Bar Association, charged with proposing annual amendments to the Delaware General Corporation Law on behalf of the Delaware State Bar Association
Former member of the Board of Advisors of the University of Pennsylvania's Institute of Law and Economics
Former Chair of the Board of Bar Examiners of the Delaware Supreme Court
Former Lecturer in Law, University of Pennsylvania Law School, instructing with respect to fiduciary responsibilities of directors of Delaware corporations
Former member of the Board of Trustees of the Delaware Bar Foundation
Former chair of the Delaware Supreme Court Advisory Committee on IOLTA
Assistant to the President of the Delaware Bar Association, during the tenure of The Honorable E. Norman Veasey as President of the DSBA, 1982-1983
Former member of the Executive Committee of the Delaware State Bar Association
Former chair of the New Lawyers Committee of the Delaware State Bar Association
Recipient of the Delaware State Bar Association's New Lawyers Distinguished Service Award