Tom Devine is legal director of the Government Accountability Project, where he has worked since January 1979. GAP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public interest organization that champions the rights of whistleblowers, those employees who exercise freedom of speech to challenge abuses of power that betray the public trust.
During his 34 years at GAP he has represented or informally helped over 5,000 whistleblowers to defend themselves against retaliation or make a difference, such as stopping nuclear power plants that were accidents waiting to happen, defeating five attempts to deregulate government-approved meat inspection, blocking the next generation of Star Wars or fighting security breaches in both government and corporate defense against terrorism. He has been a leader in the campaigns to pass or defend 25major domestic or international whistleblower laws, or every one enacted over the last two decades -- from the Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 for federal employees; totenbreakthrough laws since 2002 creating the right to jury trials for corporate whistleblowers; to new U.N., World Bank and African Development Bank policies legalizing public freedom of expression for their own whistleblowers, the first time any Intergovernmental Organizations have adopted this cornerstone for global accountability. He has been an “Ambassador of Whistleblowing” for the State Department in over a dozen nations on speaking tours to advocate whistleblower rights as a cornerstone transparency reform for globalization.
Tom has authored or co-authored numerous books, including Courage Without Martyrdom: The Whistleblower’s Survival Guide, The Art of Anonymous Activism, law review articles, newspaper op-ed articles, and The Corporate Whistleblower Survival Guide: A Handbook for Committing the Truth, which just won the award as “International Business Book of the Year at the 2011 Frankfurt Book Fair.He has received numerous awards, including the Hugh Hefner First Amendment Award and the Fund for Constitutional Government’s Defender of the Constitution Award, in 2006 was inducted into the Freedom of Information Act Hall of Fame by a coalition of public interest groups, the Make It Safe Campaign’s Lifetime Achievement Award and has been selected as one of Washington DC’s top employment lawyers for the last three years by Washingtonian magazine. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Disaster Accountability Project, and the Barrett Kohler Publishing Company Authors Coop.