John D. Finerty (Emeritus)

John Finerty practiced law for almost 50 years until his retirement from his active practice in 2013. John’s practice focused on local land use issues (such as zoning, real estate development, tax assessments and appeals), licensing and permitting, and municipal financing. He also had considerable experience in environmental and construction law.

Originally from Chicago, John moved to Wisconsin to attend Marquette University and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1961, a Law degree in 1964 and a Master’s Degree in government (cum laude) in 1971.

Over the course of his career, John was best known for tenacious and successful representation of clients at Milwaukee City Hall and in other municipalities around Wisconsin. Whether seeking a zoning change or a fairer price for a government condemnation, John could be counted on to determinedly and successfully advance the interests of his clients. John succeeded because of both his deep knowledge of the law and administrative rules and his strong personal relationships with government staff and elected officials across the metropolitan area.

Prominent clients over the years included Miller Brewing, Waste Management of Wisconsin, CMC Heartland Partners, Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company and Potawatomi Casino and Hotel.

John also served as Wisconsin legal counsel to U.S. Senator William Proxmire (D-Wis.) and in numerous consulting and special counsel capacities for local municipalities and special purpose districts. John was appointed a Circuit Court Commissioner in 1979 and continued in that position until retirement. He also served 12 years as a member of the City of Wauwatosa Civil Service Commission (1983 to 1996) and from 1997 until retirement was a voting citizen member of the Elm Grove Village Board’s Legislative Committee.

Like many others in the firm, his name regularly appears in publications such as Super Lawyers and The Best Lawyers in America.