Baird Mandalas Brockstedt, LLC John W. Paradee Partner

Land Use & Zoning Law


  • University of Virginia, BA, 1985
  • University of Richmond, JD/MBA, 1989


John is widely recognized for his ability to secure approval for difficult or controversial projects. In addition to his vast experience in regulatory and transactional work, John has also won a long list of significant cases vindicating the rights of private property owners, including the invalidation of confiscatory zoning regulations, reversal of permit denials for various land use projects and uses, and the successful defense of legal challenges to various commercial projects.

Among John’s clients are Equity Lifestyle Properties, Dogfish Head, Lighthouse Construction, the Hudson Family, Wal-Mart, and Royal Farms. In addition to his land use and regulatory practice, John also represents numerous local business interests, including landlords, homebuilders, and contractors. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Foreign Affairs. He earned his Juris Doctor and Masters in Business Administration from the University of Richmond. He is the former Chairman of the Board of Directors of Bayhealth Medical Center, a Trustee of the University of Delaware, and a Member of the Greater Kent Committee.


  • Martindale Hubbell AV Preeminent
  • Top Lawyer in Delaware Today for Land Use in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020
  • Top Lawyer in Delaware Today for Business Law in 2017, 2020, and 2021
  • Best Lawyers for Land Use and Zoning Law
  • Recognized by Super Lawyers Chambers USA


  • A Trustee of the University of Delaware
  • A Member of the Kent Sussex Leadership Alliance

bar admissions

  • Delaware State Bar,1989
  • U.S. District Court (Delaware), 1990
  • United States Supreme Court, 1997

If you have to go to court, get the best, and go to win. That’s why we used John.

I’ve known John Paradee professionally for more than 20 years, and always had a great deal of respect for him. We never had a need to use him, until we had a complex land use/landlord tenant issue come up. We had a case that went to the Court of Chancery, on an issue that was never contemplated by the legislature or the law, and was fairly complex. The ramifications to us if we lost this case would have been severe, so we went with the best Attorney I knew for a case like this, which was John. His preparation, understanding of the law, and the courts was key to our success. We won resoundingly, and unequivocally, with the Court of Chancery refuting every point and allegation of the plaintiff. Going to court or being sued is not something anyone wants to go thru, but if you have to go to court, get the best, and go to win. That’s why we used John.

– Andy Strine

Heartily commend his abilities and skillful tactics

I have known and worked with John Paradee with respect to real estate transactions and land development projects for over 15 years. Based upon numerous interactions with him on various subjects, I can heartily commend his abilities and skillful tactics dealing with governmental authorities, politicians, community leaders, and local citizens. John is an honorable, intuitive, and spirited problem solver who endeavors to create beneficial business and personal relationships between parties. His wide breadth of knowledge and calm, engaging style of communication with others is most admirable. I look forward to continuing to work with John for many years to come.

– Ian Cohen

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