John Donelson Martin
As the original founder of Martin, Tate, Morrow & Marston, P.C., John D. Martin was a graduate of the law department of the University of Virginia, and began practicing law in Memphis in 1904. On May 3, 1935, John D. Martin, Sr. was appointed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt as a Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Tennessee. While serving on the district court bench, Judge Martin decided a number of important cases, including upholding the constitutionality of several pieces of New Deal legislation, including the Agricultural Adjustment Act and the legislation authorizing the Tennessee Valley Authority. In recognition of his ability and experience, Judge Martin was appointed to the Sixth Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals by President Roosevelt on September 4, 1940, where he served until soon before his death in 1962.
John Donelson Martin, Jr.
John Donelson Martin, Jr. shared an alma mater with his father and joined him in 1932 to form a partnership then known as Martin & Martin. While his father was on the bench, John Martin, Jr. continued to strengthen his law practice, interrupted briefly by his tour of duty as a naval officer during World War II. In 1948-49, John Martin, Jr. served as the President of the Memphis Bar Association. Like his father, Judge Martin, John Martin, Jr., had a long and notable legal career, remaining with the Firm until his death in 1984.
S. Shepherd Tate
S. Shepherd Tate joined Martin & Martin in 1947 as he was completing a judicial clerkship with Judge Martin at the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Tate was a fellow University of Virginia alumnus and had also served as a naval officer during World War II. In 1950, John Martin, Jr. and Mr. Tate formed a partnership, changing the name of the Firm to Martin & Tate. Mr. Tate has many career distinctions, including being president of the Memphis (1959-1960), Tennessee (1963-1964), and American (1978-1979) Bar Associations.
George Everett Morrow
George Everett Morrow became an associate with Martin & Tate in 1950. He was also a World War II veteran, an alumnus of the University of Virginia law school, and a former clerk to Judge Martin, Sr. By 1958, Mr. Morrow became a partner and the name of the firm was changed to Martin, Tate & Morrow. Mr. Morrow served for many years as counsel to Memphis Light Gas & Water Division, the city’s unified utility provider. He handled numerous significant utility cases before the Federal Power Commission and federal courts, including utility rate cases before the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Morrow practiced with the firm until his death in 1982.
W. Emmett Marston
W. Emmett Marston joined Martin & Tate in 1955 as an associate, after having served as a law clerk to the late Judge Edwin R. Holmes of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Mr. Marston also had many career distinctions, including serving as president of the Memphis (1977-1978) and Tennessee (1984-1985) Bar Associations. Mr. Marston practiced with the firm until his death in 2010.