Teresa Guerra Snelson will join the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office as its chief attorney for the civil division. Snelson, an associate judge with the Dallas County Civil District Court, says she will begin working at the DA’s office in early October. She has been an associate judge since 2004.
As head of the civil division at the DA’s office, Snelson says she will be responsible for acting as counsel for elected Dallas County officials and for city agencies. She also will handle litigation that deals with Dallas County affairs, individuals who are county employees and county contracts, among other things.
“I hope to help the leadership of Dallas County government fulfill responsibilities in ways that are appropriate, progressive and just,” she says. “I’m looking forward to going in and finding best practices and making sure things are handled efficiently, effectively and in a responsive manner.”
Before serving as an associate judge, Snelson worked at the Texas Office of the Attorney General and the Texas Department of Public Safety.
“I started out representing state agencies and state employees that had been sued,” she says. “I spent six or seven years as a state public servant before I went into the private sector and litigated.”
Snelson says she is board certified in personal-injury trial law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.
“Litigation was the primary focus of my legal practice before I became a judge,” she says.
Snelson says she will be the first Hispanic to lead a division of the Dallas County DA’s office.
“I’m very excited about that huge honor,” Snelson says. “I was not aware when I was contemplating taking the responsibility that this milestone had not been met yet. It’s really an honor to me to have the district attorney call on me to fill this role on his team.”
Snelson also says “reaching this first is important to many members of the Dallas community as a whole, as well as the Hispanic community.”
Snelson says she strongly believes in public service — that’s what drew her to the DA’s office. Dallas County DA Craig Watkins “has an important vision, and I’m very happy to be a part of that vision,” she says. “I’m excited to have that opportunity.”
-- Christine Lesicko