Wilson M. Brown III is one of the firm's most experienced defense attorneys. Since joining Drinker Biddle in 1977, Wilson has prepared and tried some of the firm's largest and most complex cases in courts throughout the United States. His practice is concentrated in the areas of commercial litigation, intellectual property and technology litigation, and insurance coverage disputes, where he is recognized as one of the premier trial attorneys in the country. Wilson serves as a managing partner of the firm and as chair of the Commercial Litigation Practice Group.
Commercial Disputes. Wilson handles a wide range of commercial cases. His recent trials include the successful defense of a world-wide supplier of industrial gases in a "bet the business line" arbitration; a defense verdict of no liability and the recovery of legal fees for one of the Disney companies in a breach of contract action; victories for a large consulting firm in a series of arbitrations over executive compensation; and the prosecution and defense of litigation over the proper reach of state, county and local regulation of Pennsylvania's waste industry. He also represents clients charged with antitrust, securities and consumer fraud violations in both individual and class actions.
Intellectual Property and Technology Litigation. Wilson has served as lead litigation counsel in a number of patent and trademark suits. These suits include the successful defense before a jury of one of an electronics industry client's core technologies against claims of prior invention and ownership; the successful enforcement of another electronic industry client's patents against threatened infringement by a substantial competitor; the defense of a software company against claims of infringement of patents relating to database encryption; and the defense of pharmaceutical and retail sector clients in several sizable trademark infringement cases.
Insurance Litigation. Wilson has represented insurance company clients in cases of national significance involving coverage for environmental and toxic tort exposures. He has served as lead counsel in the U.S. Gypsum coverage litigation in Chicago and the National Gypsum coverage litigation in New York, both involving cutting-edge issues of coverage for asbestos-related claims on which his clients prevailed at trial. He has also served as lead counsel, at the trial and appellate levels, in environmental coverage cases throughout the country and has defended and counseled insurers on bad faith and other extra-contractual liability claims.
In General. Wilson, a Morehead Scholar, graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with highest honors in 1974. He received his law degree from the University of Virginia in 1977, where he served on the law review and was Order of the Coif. He is a member of the American, Pennsylvania and Philadelphia Bar Associations. Wilson's efforts to vindicate three families victimized by the government's improper claim of state secrets privilege in United States v. Reynolds, 345 U.S. 1, (1953), are the subject of Pulitzer Prize-winner Barry Siegel's book Claim of Privilege (2008) and Peter Gallison's and Robb Moss' documentary film Secrecy (2008).
The State Secrets Privilege: Torts, Torture and the Role of the Judiciary