Finley Law

R. Todd Gaffney

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Todd was born in Storm Lake, Iowa and he has been a resident of the Des Moines area for approximately 40 years. Todd maintains his litigation practice in the areas of transportation, products liability, commercial, premises liability, legal malpractice and property rights. Todd has received defense verdicts in courtrooms throughout all parts of Iowa. Todd is recognized as a leader in Iowa in the defense of railroads and trucking companies. He is one of the only few railroad litigators whose office is located in Iowa. As a result, Todd is often requested by his clients to immediately respond to significant incidents involving injuries at railroad crossings, train derailments, motor vehicle accidents, pedestrian injuries, property damages/contaminations and alleged product failures. For a period of years, Todd was retained as outside counsel to act as the US Legal Coordinator for the Canadian Pacific Railway. In this capacity Todd managed all of Canadian Pacific’s FELA, crossing and personal injury claims and lawsuits, while continuing to handle and defend cases for his other clients. Todd continues to represent several Class I and regional railroads. Todd is a Fellow in the Iowa Academy of Trial Lawyers. He has been recognized as a “Super Lawyer” and has been listed in the publication, Best Lawyers of America. He is an elected member and on the Board of Directors of the Trial Attorneys of America (TAA). Todd is also a past President of TAA. Todd has served as the chair of the Iowa State Bar Association’s Litigation Committee. He has received the preeminent AV rating from Martindale Hubbell, the highest rating available. He is a member of the honorary fraternity of Omicron Delta Kappa and was a staff member of the Drake Law Review. Upon graduation from Drake Law School, Todd served two years as a clerk to the Honorable Donald E. O’Brien, U.S. District Court Judge, Northern and Southern Districts of Iowa. He was a member of the Drake University Board of Trustees from 1989 to 1995. While an undergraduate at Drake, Todd was a Division I, First Team Academic All-American football player.




Bar Admission



Missouri Supreme Court

United States District Court Northern District of Iowa

United States District Court Southern District of Iowa

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit


Legal: John Marshall Law School; Drake University, J.D., 1979

Undergraduate: Drake University, B.S.B.A, 1976

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