Our History

Pettit & Griffin, Inc. was incorporated in March 1963 by John H. Pettit and Howard D. Griffin (Dave) as a land development, residential home building, and light commercial building company. John and Dave started their first single-family home project on April 1, 1963. With six employees at the start, they concentrated their beginning in Prince George’s County, and as a team they developed over 850 units in their first 10 years in business.

John H. Pettit was born in Endicottville, New York and later moved to Grantsville in Western Maryland in the 1950s. After the Korean War, he graduated from Strayer Business College. He worked for J. Wesley Buchanan & Company—a home building company—before founding his own business, Pettit & Griffin, Inc. in 1963, which became one of the area’s most well-known companies for taking pride in building affordable housing.

In 1972, Howard D. Griffin retired from the business when the company repurchased his stock due to an illness. He passed away in May 1976. Over the next 20 years, the company grew into one of the premier mid-size development companies in the Washington, DC metropolitan area. Annual sales reached $25 million with over 120 employees in 1989. In the early 1990s, operations were scaled back due to economic conditions.

Many years later, John H. Pettit passed away unexpectedly in 1994 at the age of 66. He was survived by his four children, Richard B. Pettit, J. Stephen Pettit, Barbara L. Pettit, and Jeanne M. Pettit who were all active in the business over the years. Richard Pettit, John’s eldest son, became President and CEO of Pettit & Griffin and its affiliated businesses.

In June 2003, Pettit & Griffin restructured its hierarchy of partnerships and businesses for legal and accounting purposes and became known as Pettit Companies.

Today, Pettit Companies is in its third generation with nearly 20 employees. Pettit Companies has two divisions of business—Pettit Development and Pettit Management Services. Pettit Development offers full-service land development and excavation services to residential home builders across the DC metropolitan area, including some of the area’s most well-known and largest volume builders. Pettit Management Services offers full-service property management and leasing services for its commercial retail, office, flex, and warehouse properties as well as commercial condominium association and business management for its related businesses.

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