In honor of Black History Month, which is celebrated throughout the month of February, the DA’s Office is featuring stories of employees and their contributions to our community. Meet Mary Dickerson-Shaw who is an Administrative Paralegal for the Chief of Insurance Fraud and Workplace Justice Division and has been with the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office for 15 years. Read more about what inspired her to pursue a career at the DA’s Office, below.
Why did you choose a career at the DA’s Office?
“It was a dream come true when I received the offer of employment with the Office of the District Attorney to join the crimefighting family. I have been employed with the agency for 15 years and find my career in public safety valuable.
In working as the Chief’s Administrative Paralegal, I have experienced the opportunity of being cross-designated and working on clandestine operations prosecuted under state and federal jurisdiction. My role is to focus on the orderly administration of the division by acting as the repository for confidential personnel, grant budget, audit findings, and other division documents. I find it gratifying in serving as a liaison for the Division Chief and Assistant Chief with law enforcement members, task force and community outreach partners, vendors, and contractors. In addition, I am assigned to finding fugitives that fail to appear for proceedings, conducting criminal background checks, arrest warrant and restitution recovery tracking and helping with the development of the monthly General Management System reports to include special projects.
As a survivor of assault, I valued the help, appreciated the guidance, and was comforted in the commitment to my safety received from the prosecutor and team during the process of bringing my attacker to justice. I continue to find it comforting in volunteering and supporting victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. Employment in a field uplifting and protecting those that are often shammed and silenced was and is still my passion.”
Why is Black History Month important to you?
“Black History Month is an opportunity to concentrate on a lineage of a mixed and diverse people riddled by a history of slavery, struggle, racism, persistence, and accomplishment. A continued engagement with Black, Afro-Puerto Rican and Afro-Cuban History is vital as it lends to context for the present.
As a mixed raced woman, I find it extremely important in this climate of division and uncertainty to embrace the pride of my heritage in its entirety and focus on understanding the beauty, inclusivity, and contributions of my ancestors.
Black History Month is a time to build relationships, appreciate identities, celebrate differences, and have conversations relating to the past, present, and beyond.”