Dorothy Troutman: The Lady of Upper Marlboro By Katherine O. Rizzo

Imagine no Prince

George’s Equestrian Cen- ter. Imagine no Rosaryville State Park. Imagine driv- ing down Rt. 301 and see- ing industrial complexes packed on both sides of the highway. It is sad to think about so much open space of rural Maryland being paved over, but thankfully there is Dorothy Troutman. A small woman in stature with a powerful voice who singlehandedly drew com- munities together to pre- serve Upper Marlborough and keep it rural. Keep it green. Keep it for horses.

munity. Glennwood Farm became a boarding facility; Sandra and her husband trained race- horses from there; and Dorothy’s grandchil- dren joined Marlborough Pony Club and the farm hosted many practices.

Preserving a Way of Life Urban and industrial sprawl threatened the

Ninty-seven-year-old Dorothy Troutman stands in front of one of the hay barns at her Glennwood Farm with photos from the 1985 Prince George’s Equestrian Review and Melwood Presenta- tion Ceremony.

Welcome to Hollywood Born on May 15, 1922, in Strawberry Point,

IA, the young Dorothy Troutman was just as smart and quick witted as she is today at 97. After graduating high school as valedictorian, Dorothy went to secretarial school and then, with a family friend, headed west to California in search of a job in the early 1940s. At the height of World War II, Hollywood was the place to be according to Dorothy. “We lived in Sierra Madre while looking for work and then had an apartment right on Hollywood Boule- vard,” she reminisced. “We had one of those ef- ficiency apartments where the bed fold- ed into the wall and a modest kitchen, but the location was fabulous!” Dorothy landed a job at the famed Selznick national

Inter- Pictures

studios where she worked in the con- tracts

department. 26 | THE EQUIERY | FEBRUARY 2020

“At a time of trip- licates and carbon copies, the heads of the studio were im- pressed with how quick my mom was in dicta- tion,” Dorothy’s son Glenn stated. “She told us that she never made mistakes and during the interview, finished the assignment so quickly she was hired right away.” Selznick Pictures produced Academy Award winners Gone with the Wind and Rebecca. “I worked with the actors’ contracts and met some pretty famous people while there,” Dorothy remembered. She met more than just famous actors while in California, however. While waiting for the streetcar one after-

Dorothy met her husband George Troutman in Hol- lywood, CA, where she worked for Selznick Interna- tional Pictures and he was an Army Air Corps bomber pilot. Both later became active lobbyists in Maryland.

noon, a young Army Air Corps bomber pilot began chatting with her. “Tere were a lot of men from all branches of the armed forces that would ship in and out from there at the time,” she explained, adding with a smile, “I had so many dates in those days!” Tis particular young solider ended up being “the one” and in 1946 after the war had ended, she and George Troutman were married.

Glennwood Farm Te post WWII years for the young couple

was full of typical Army travel as George was stationed at various locations around the coun- try. His family was from Atlanta, GA, where the family law firm of Troutman


LLP was headquar- tered. But as George started thinking of retirement,


moved into the lobbying field and worked primarily at the Pentagon where he was a lobbyist for the Air Force and later the aerospace industry. With Andrews

Air Force Base so close to the Penta-

gon, the Troutmans decided to settle in Mary- land. “Our first place was a little ways from here,” Dorothy said while sitting at her kitchen table at Glennwood Farm in Upper Marlboro. “It was my daughters who really loved horses, so we started this farm for them.” Te Troutmans established Glennwood Farm in 1971, as a place to raise a family and have horses for their daughters Sandra and Diane. As their interest in horses grew, so did the farm and Dorothy’s

involvement with the com-

rural way of life in Upper Marlborough and Dorothy was quick to act. She coined the phrase “Keep Marlboro Country” and had bumper stickers made to hand out to community mem- bers and politicians. She began a campaign to change the county zoning laws in order to pre- serve open space and the traditions of farm life. “Dorothy is a truly remarkable individual,”

said Jim Estepp, 9th District County Coun- cil member from 1995 to 2002. “When I first started to run for office, she was the person ev- eryone said I needed to meet. She’s very influ- ential in the community.” Estepp said that preservation in general,

not just for horse people, is very important to Dorothy. “She looked at the quality of growth within different projects and would support development as long as the quality was there.” Dorothy explained that she did not oppose

development as a whole, “it is the type of de- velopment that is important. We need larger housing parcels and not tons of buildings.” Estepp added, “she was able to get high end homes on larger pieces of land in a subdivision along Rt. 301 that also included horse trails. Tat’s how good she is at preservation.” Estepp credits Dorothy with preserving the

historic Croom area as well. “Croom lies along the path that the British took on their way to D.C. during the War of 1812,” Estepp explained. “While the tobacco farms in that area were be- ing phased out, Dorothy was able to get many

of them turned into equestrian farms instead of continued...

As a thank you to Dorothy, the water tower at the PGEC was painted with horses from her Glennwood Farm.

800-244-9580 |

Katherine O. Rizzo

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