• John L. Ray

    Download Contact (.vcf)

    Direct: 202.585.6565
    General: 202.585.6500
    Fax: 202.585.6600


    George Washington University Law School, J.D., with honors, 1973.


    George Washington University, B.A., 1970.

    Bar Admissions
    Washington, D.C.
    • Profile
    • Representative Matters
    • Honors & Awards
    • Publications
    • Memberships & Activities
    • Speaking Engagements


    John Ray is a former member of Manatt, Phelps & Phillip, LLP's board of directors and former administrative partner of the firm's Washington, D.C., office. His law practice concentrates on advising clients in zoning and land use, public policy and regulatory, and business and municipal representation. He regularly helps his clients resolve complex matters by drawing upon his extensive experience advancing private sector clients' public policy agendas in the federal and municipal government arenas. 

    Mr. Ray also provides legal counsel in healthcare, banking and real estate.

    Mr. Ray's involvement in local, national and international affairs and in Washington, D.C.'s political processes spans 27 years and his record of leadership in Democratic Party activities is long and distinguished, including serving as chairman of the District of Columbia delegation to the 1980 Democratic National Convention and as a member of the Democratic National Committee's Mid-Atlantic Finance Committee. On the Hill, he served as counsel to the Senate Antitrust & Monopolies Subcommittee and, in the Executive Branch, he served as an attorney-advisor with the Office of Legal Counsel of the Department of Justice. Mr. Ray also served as law clerk to Circuit Judge Spottswood W. Robinson, III of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

    Mr. Ray's experience includes 18 years as an at-large member of the District of Columbia City Council. During that period, he served as acting chairman and chairman pro tempore of the Council, and chairman of its Committee on Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, in which positions he dealt with consumer protection, business licensing and regulation, insurance and health care licensing and regulation, housing regulation, public utilities and some aspects of banking; and drafted and guided through passage legislation establishing the Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking as a cabinet-level agency. He also served on the Council's Judiciary, Economic Development, Housing and Human Services Committees.

    Other legislative achievements included authoring and winning Council approval of some of the District's most progressive and wide-ranging reform legislation including: a major overhaul of the its system of licensing and regulating health care professionals and health maintenance organizations; significant revisions to laws governing corporations and partnerships; and revisions to laws affecting government regulation of corporations, rental housing and the insurance industry.

    Mr. Ray also served on the Mid-Atlantic and Virginia Boards of Directors and Audit Committee of Wachovia Bank (aka First Union Bank).

    Representative Matters

    Honors & Awards

    The Best Lawyers in America, 2005-2016.


    Mr. Ray regularly publishes articles on public policy issues in the commentary sections of The Washington Post, The Washington Times and other publications.

    Memberships & Activities

    Admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, the United States District Court of the District of Columbia and the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

    Member, District of Columbia Bar Association.

    Member, Washington Bar Association.

    Member, Board of Directors, Alliance for Responsible Cuba Policy.

    Member, Federal City Council.

    Member, District of Columbia Chamber of Commerce.

    Member, Greater Washington Board of Trade.

    Member, Board of Directors, DC Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy

    Member, Board of Directors, University of the District of Columbia Foundation, Inc.

    Former Member Virginia Board of Directors, First Union Corporation

    Former Member, Mid-Atlantic Board and Advisory Board, Wachovia Corporation.

    Former Member, National Board of Directors, YMCA of the USA.

    Former Member, Board of Directors, Washington Ballet.

    Former Member, Board of Directors, YMCA of Metropolitan Washington. 


    Served five and one-half years in the United States Air Force.

    Speaking Engagements