San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan announced the swearing-in today of a new class of 14 Deputy District Attorneys, who took their oath at the Superior Courthouse downtown. The members of the new class, who have diverse professional and personal backgrounds, bring an array of rich experience to the DA’s Office.
“I am very proud and excited to welcome the class of 2024 to our office,” District Attorney Summer Stephan said. “This is a group of professionals who not only bring a variety of skills and experience to our office, but also reflect the diversity in our community and who embrace our mission of pursuing fair and equal justice.”
The 2024 Class of Deputy Das includes top scholars, authors, advocates, and individuals who embody the mission and principles of the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office. The class speaks multiple languages among them, including Pakistani Urdu, Hindi, Persian, and Spanish. The class includes Eagle Scouts, worldwide children’s ministry coordinators, singers, US Soccer referees, NCAA Division One swimmers, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructors, soccer players, and travel enthusiasts.
One of the new Deputy District Attorneys, Pallavi Garg, who was born in Calcutta, India, and raised in Dallas, Texas, was a pre-med student until she learned about human trafficking.
“Realizing that gross indifference to humanity can still exist in a place like the United States changed my trajectory,” Garg said. “I knew I wanted to be a career prosecutor and fight against those who treat people like commodities. I have since worked in Miami as a prosecutor in Gangs and Human Trafficking. Once I moved to San Diego and met DA Summer Stephan and Deputy DAs in this office, I knew I had found my professional home. The opportunity to get up each day and do what is right for every person involved in a case is truly the most honorable work I could imagine doing.”
For Deputy DA Carys Davies, the annual service trips she took every summer since middle school to developing countries in Haiti, Kenya, Rwanda, and Honduras inspired her to pursue a career as a prosecutor.
“I had the opportunities to interact with women and children living in poverty; I knew I wanted to be an advocate for vulnerable victims who did not have a voice,” Davies said. “Having majored in Childhood Development combined with observing a Deputy DA conduct a direct examination of a rape victim in trial, motivated me to become prosecutor to come alongside vulnerable victims as they recount the worse day of their life and help give them a voice. The San Diego County District Attorney’s dedication to coming alongside vulnerable victims, fighting for justice for vulnerable victims, and supporting them whether charges were filed or not, drew me to this office.”
Only a few years ago, Alfredo Villegas started out as a Student Worker at the DA’s Office and now he is back as a Deputy DA.
“What inspired me to become a prosecutor at the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office was the opportunity to serve the community that I was born and raised in,” Villegas said. “Many of the people who inspired me to pursue a career in the law worked in this office and I feel a special sense of pride in being able to pursue justice and advocate for victims of crime in and outside the courtroom.”
Under the guidance of senior Deputy District Attorneys, the new prosecutors recently completed a three-week, intensive training to learn from over 80 experts, including staff from all walks in the office, about professionalism, trial advocacy, and culture, and what it means to serve as a public prosecutor in our richly diverse San Diego County. The new prosecutors will report to their assignments today across all branches and divisions of the District Attorney’s Office.
The San Diego DA’s Office has more than 1,100 employees, including a diverse group of 345 Deputy District Attorneys of which 201 are women and 144 are men.