Firm History – John D. Wright

Maryland Lawyers: Wright Constable & Skeen

In 1937 John D. Wright, a trust officer with The Equitable Bank in Baltimore, began a tax newsletter that was circulated nationally by the bank. As a result of the interest evoked by the newsletter, Wright left the bank and began a law firm, eventually named Wright, Robertson & Dowell. He continued to write tax articles for national publications, attracting such Hollywood clients as Jack Benny, Alice Faye and Jules Stein, president of Music Corporation of America.

Emma S. Robertson, an early female graduate of the Univeristy of Maryland Law School, joined Wright in this endeavor, becoming one of the first female partners in any United States law firm. In addition, she, with Amelia Earhart, became one of the first women to pilot an airplane.

George H. Dowell joined the firm in 1942 specializing in tax planning and the implementation of pension and profit sharing plans, at that time a new phenomenon in employee benefits.

Thereafter, the firm established a reputation in the tax field, serving many of Baltimore’s leading businesses. The tax specialty continued as the mainstay of the firm until 1974, when it combined with the small Towson litigation firm of Townsend Parks and changed its name to Wright and Parks. This arrangement continued until 1986 when the firm merged with Constable, Alexander, Daneker & Skeen to eventually become Wright, Constable & Skeen, a full service law firm.