Ryan D. Gilsenan




As an experienced litigator representing international and domestic clients alike, Ryan solves problems with creativity, responsiveness and diligence. With a maritime practice defending ship owners, charterers, and pilot associations, Ryan also drafts and negotiates transportation agreements, charter parties, and vessel financing transactions.  In other aspects of his law practice, Ryan defends contractors and building supply manufacturers in construction defect cases and litigates a variety of tort cases and contract disputes.

As a former seagoing engineer in the United States Merchant Marine, Ryan has firsthand experience in the technical design, operation, maintenance and repair of general cargo ships, product tankers, container ships, bulk carriers, and pure car/truck carriers, and articulated tug-barges. Ryan is on-call 24/7 to investigate and protect vessel interests in connection with machinery failure, groundings, collisions, wet and dry cargo claims, pollution incidents, dock damage, personal injuries to longshoremen and crew, as well as to provide immediate response in MARPOL criminal defense matters, and to handle vessel arrest and casualty response. In this regard, Ryan has capably represented vessel owners and charterers alike hailing from Bermuda and the Caribbean, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, New York, Russia, Scandinavia, Singapore and the United Kingdom.


  • J.D., 2006, University of South Carolina School of Law, 2006

    • CALI award for excellence in Product Liability​​

    • First Place, J. Woodrow Lewis Moot Court Competition

  • M.A., 2000, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

    •  Journalism and Mass Communication

  • B.S. 1997, United States Merchant Marine Academy, Kings Point, New York

    • Marine Engineering Systems

Professional Activities

  • Maritime Law Association of the United States, Proctor

  • Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute

    • Long Range Planning Committee​

  • Maritime Association of South Carolina

    • Board Member 2018-present

Bar Admissions

  • United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit

  • United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit

  • United States District Court, District of South Carolina

  • South Carolina Supreme Court