The Decatur-based law firm of Woodruff & Wren traces its roots to 1905 when Cicero T. Gettys, the maternal grandfather of current partner Mason L. Woodruff and a newly licensed attorney, entered into partnership with T.J. McMurray. With Mr. McMurray, a veteran lawyer with an established reputation, Mr. Gettys built a thriving practice representing the interests of clients from Wise County and the surrounding region. In 1917, the two partners built the McMurray-Gettys Building which still stands on the southwest corner of the Decatur Town Square.
Shortly after Mr. Murray’s death in 1926, Mason Woodruff’s great-uncle H.G. “Grady” Woodruff entered into the practice of law; although he never joined Mr. Gettys in practice, he maintained offices in the McMurray-Gettys Building. Mason Woodruff’s father, W.B. Woodruff, Jr. joined Grady Woodruff in practice in 1949. Their firm eventually expanded to include two additional partners, Jack Morgan and Bill Nobles. Although Bill Nobles left the firm for a brief period of time to serve as County Attorney, the firm was known for most of the 1950s as Woodruff, Morgan, Woodruff, & Nobles.
Cicero T. Gettys practiced law until his death in 1960. At that time, Grady Woodruff moved into his corner office in the McMurray-Gettys Building. W.B. Woodruff, Jr. left the firm after the Cuban Missile Crisis to return to active military duty. In 1963, Grady Woodruff died and the remaining partners in the firm, Bill Nobles and Jack Morgan, founded their own firm in a different location. Upon his return to civilian life, W.B. Woodruff, Jr. launched a new practice in the McMurray-Gettys Building. He later pursued an opportunity to purchase and remodel the old Plaza Theater on the Decatur Town Square and moved his practice to this building, which remains the home of the current Woodruff & Wren practice.
Past partners and associates in the firm have included Jack Shriver (who later left the area), John H. Fostel (current judge of the District Court in Wise County), Dirk Murcheson (who later left the area), Stephen J. Wren (current judge of Wise County Court-At-Law No. 2), Melton D. Cude (current judge of Wise County Court-At-Law No. 1), Michael A. Simpson, Ross M. Simpson, and Derrick Boyd (all of whom are now affiliated with the law firm Simpson, Boyd & Powers, in Wise County), David P. Yturri (who later left the area), and Dana Manoushagian (who now has her own practice in Bridgeport, Texas). Current partner Jennifer Wren is the daughter-in-law of former partner Stephen J. Wren.
Upon the retirement of W.B. Woodruff, Jr. Mason Woodruff and Stephen Wren established the firm Woodruff and Wren. Jennifer Wren joined the practice in 2002. Stephen Wren left the firm in 2011 to undertake the position of Judge of the County Court of Law No. 2.
Today, Woodruff and Wren continues to represent clients as a partnership between Mason Woodruff and Jennifer Wren.