Lewis, Thomason, King, Krieg & Waldrop, P.C.

Charles W. Cagle

Charles W. (Chuck) Cagle is a shareholder and chair of the Education Law and Government Relations Practice Group for the firm’s Nashville office. He oversees the firm’s representation of over 70 public boards of education, two private schools, two private universities, and a private medical school in a variety of legal matters including employment issues related to both licensed and classified employees, employee and student discipline, employee and student rights, special education and disability accommodation, constitutional rights issues, sexual harassment and bullying issues, civil rights, desegregation, school system consolidation, tort liability, school system business practices, school funding, taxation, and school construction.

Mr. Cagle also is a registered lobbyist with the Tennessee Bureau of Ethics and Campaign Finance. His list of lobbying clients has included school superintendents, school employee professional organizations, school boards, private schools, and private universities. In addition, Mr. Cagle serves as an adjunct professor at Vanderbilt University teaching courses in K-12 Education Law and Public Policy and the Law of Higher Education.


  • Tennessee Council of School Board Attorneys
  • National School Boards Association’s Council of School Attorneys
  • Education Law Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Tennessee Bar Association
  • Nashville Bar Association


  • Fellow, Nashville Bar Association
  • Selected by American Lawyer Media and Martindale-Hubbell as Elite Lawyer of the South
  • Recipient of the Kip Reel Award – the highest award bestowed for educational leadership by the Tennessee Organization of School Superintendents
  • AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Named to The Best Lawyers in America©, Education Law
  • Best Lawyers in Tennessee
  • Historical Committee, Nashville Bar Association
  • Distinguished Adjunt Faculty Award, Vanderbilt University
  • Adjunct Professor, Peabody College of Vanderbilt University
  • Government Relations Committee, Nashville Bar Association
  • Federal Practice Committee, Nashville Bar Association
  • Past Chair, Medical-Legal Relations Committee, Tennessee Bar Association
  • Past President, Nashville City Club
  • Recipient, Tennessee Technological University Outstanding Service Award in 2006
  • Recipient, Tennessee Technological University College of Education Distinguished Alumni Award in 2007
  • Board of Directors, Nashville Symphony Orchestra
  • Past President, Board of Directors, Nashville Symphony Orchestra League
  • Board of Directors, League of American Orchestras
  • Past President, Volunteer Council of the League of American Orchestras
  • Secretary, Association of Major Symphony Orchestra Volunteers
  • Board of Directors, Tennessee Business Roundtable
  • Board of Directors, Tennessee SCORE (State Collaborative on Reform of Education)
  • Board member, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Center at Tennessee Technological University
  • Chairman of the External Board of Visitors, Tennessee Tech College of Interdisciplinary Studies and Regional Development
  • Past President, Tennessee Council of School Board Attorneys

Best Lawyers Award Badge

Nashville Office

424 Church Street, Suite 2500
P.O. Box 198615
Nashville, Tennessee 37219
Telephone (615) 259-1366
FAX (615) 259-1389


Tennessee Technological University, B.S., 1978; M.A., 1980

Nashville School of Law, J.D., 1989

Bar Admission

Tennessee, 1989

U. S. Supreme Court, 1994

U. S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, 1994

U. S. District Court, Middle District of Tennessee, 1991

U. S. District Court, Western District of Tennessee, 1997

U. S. District Court, Eastern District of Tennessee, 1998

  • Education

    Lewis Thomason has represented governmental subdivisions, municipalities and educational institutions in numerous matters regarding education, including educator-student issues, personnel and employment matters and real estate. We also have defended individual educators in litigation matters arising in the educational setting. In addition to providing legal counsel to both public and private… [Read more]

    Municipal & Administrative

    We have a long history of providing legal counsel to cities and towns throughout Tennessee. Whether negotiating contracts on behalf of local governments or representing municipalities and utility divisions in litigation involving personal injuries and contract disputes, we understand the special legal needs of city and county governments and their… [Read more]

  • Representative Experience

    • Represented Shelby County Schools, Roane County Schools, Tipton County Schools, and Chattanooga City Schools, in district consolidations of municipal school systems into county school districts.
    • Represented the Office of the Tennessee Commissioner of Education in the Knox County/Knoxville City school consolidation.
    • Represented over 25 school districts in employee dismissal actions.
    • Represented one district during a charter school application process for a proposed regional charter school.
    • Represented over 20 districts in special education due process hearings.
    • Argued over 15 appeals before the Tennessee Court of Appeals and the Tennessee Supreme Court on issues including liability for the school board in a student death case, employee rights, rights of boards of education during the employee collective bargaining process, employment contracts, school funding, jurisdiction over school building projects, and teacher and classified employee terminations.
    • Represented 12 school districts in the United States District Court on appeals of special education due process hearing orders.
    • Authored and submitted over 10 amicus curiae briefs on behalf of clients having interest in matters pending before the Tennessee Court of Appeals and the Tennessee Supreme Court.
    • General Counsel for the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame.
  • Mr. Cagle authored over 100 pieces of legislation that are now law in Tennessee.

  • Mr. Cagle is an annual speaker at over 40 conferences per year including those sponsored by the Tennessee Organization of School Superintendents, the Tennessee School Boards Association, the Tennessee Department of Education, the Tennessee Association of School Personnel Administrators, the Association of Independent and Municipal Schools, the Tennessee Association of Independent Schools, the Tennessee Association of Independent Colleges and Schools; the Tennessee Association of Administrators In Special Education, the Tennessee Attendance Supervisors Study Council, the Tennessee School Plant Managers Association, the Tennessee Pupil Transportation Association, the Tennessee Federal Program Directors Study Council, and Tennessee Technological University.

    He is also an annual presenter for more than 30 school district in-service programs for school administrators, teachers and school board members.