Alvin Thomas is the founder of General Counsel Consulting Solutions (GCCS) located in Houston, Texas. Through GCCS, Alvin serves on the Board of Directors and/or as the General Counsel for several private companies in the fields of renewable energy, technology, waste to energy, waste handling, oil & gas and wastewater treatment. In addition, Alvin provides other consulting services primarily related to renewable energy and natural gas projects.
Alvin currently serves as General Counsel to Agilyx Corp. which is a company that specializes in pyrolysis of waste plastics into synthetic crude oil. He is also General Counsel to Therma-Flite, Inc. which is a manufacturer of patented thermal desorption equipment using a dual heated hollow screw design. Therma-Flite processes sewage sludge, drilling muds, refinery tank bottom sludges and other waste products. Their process dehydrates and volatilizes and then re-condenses any contaminating hydrocarbons for reuse as a fuel resulting in a clean residual product.
Alvin served as General Counsel to Environmental Logistics Services (ELS) and its subsidiary Apex Environmental, LLC. Apex owns and operates a subtitle D municipal solid waste landfill in Amsterdam, Ohio and ELS operated a solid waste truck to rail transloading facility in Kearny, New Jersey. While representing ELS he negotiated the contracts for the installation of a landfill gas recovery system that would help ELS maintain compliance with its Ohio EPA permits.
Before starting GCCS, Alvin served as Sr. Vice President, General Counsel, and Secretary for Global Geophysical Services, Inc. (Global). Global is a worldwide provider of seismic acquisition, processing and interpretation services to oil and gas exploration and production companies. In his work with Global, Mr. Thomas’s already broad background expanded to encompass international oil and gas matters in Latin America, Europe and the Middle East. He also became well acquainted with various maritime energy matters related to Global’s international marine operations. Having successfully guided the company through an Initial Public Offering in April 2010, Alvin established the framework for Global to function with the added responsibilities of a publicly traded company (NYSE). Alvin also handled all of the legislative affairs for Global.
Alvin served a 10-year tenure as Executive Vice President, Secretary, and General Counsel of Synagro Technologies, Inc. Synagro is the largest domestic company focused on transporting, treating and disposal of waste water residuals (biosolids) from municipal and industrial waste water treatment plants. He managed all risk areas for the company and directed the legal, legislative affairs, human resources, mergers and acquisitions, as well as the insurance and compliance divisions. During most of his tenure, Synagro operated as a public company (NASDAQ). Mr. Thomas handled 16 acquisitions that increased the company’s total revenue to almost half a billion dollars annually. In 2007, Mr. Thomas oversaw the process of taking the company private along with their private equity sponsor, The Carlyle Group.
MaxWest Environmental Systems, Inc. (MaxWest) is another example of Alvin’s work on renewable energy. Mr. Thomas served on MaxWest’s Board of Directors and served as its General Counsel. MaxWest owns a unique technology that utilizes municipal sewage sludge as the biomass feedstock for its gasification process. The process turns sewage sludge into a synthetic gas that can either be burned to create electricity or can be used for drying the sewage sludge prior to its gasification. This later use replaces the need for natural gas and significantly reduces the municipalities’ operating costs as well as the carbon footprint.
Alvin has experience assisting companies that operate landfill methane gas recovery facilities. For example, he has represented Johnstown Renewable Energy, LLC (JRE) which operates three high BTU landfill gas facilities at Waste Management landfills in Pennsylvania. Alvin was instrumental in making sure that JRE received the highest value for its gas, in part, through the production of Renewable Energy Credits.
Mr. Thomas has an extensive network of contacts within the Texas in-house legal community. For example, he has served on the Statewide Board and the Houston Board of The General Counsel Forum (TGCF) since 2004. (www.tgcf.org) He was the President of the Houston Chapter in 2004-2005. The TGCF is an organization of over 550 General Counsel in the State of Texas. Last year, it started a chapter in Atlanta, Georgia and in Chicago, Illinois. Many of Alvin’s contacts relate to the Waste and Energy industries.
After practicing law for over 24 years, Mr. Thomas possesses a strong background in a broad array of legal disciplines including Energy, Environmental law, Employment law, Intellectual Property, Corporate law, Public Company & SEC matters, Government Affairs, Insurance law, Risk Management and Litigation. Alvin is a 1991 graduate of the University Of Pittsburgh School Of Law. After graduating, Mr. Thomas began his legal career at Day Ketterer, Raley Wright & Rybolt in Canton, Ohio. Following a passion for tax law, he then took a year to specialize in the Internal Revenue Code and obtained an LL.M. in Taxation from New York University Law School in 1993. Upon graduation, Alvin accepted a position with the international law firm of Fulbright and Jaworski, L.L.P., specializing in tax and corporate law planning and tax litigation. He later practiced law with Littler Mendelson, L.P. where his focus shifted to employment law and litigation.
Mr. Thomas passed the State bar exams and has been admitted to practice in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Texas and Florida. Alvin is also licensed as an English Law Solicitor in London, England.