My Toughest Challenge: Rhonda Hunter

The chief of the Juvenile Division in the Dallas County District Attorney's Office discusses transitioning from private practice to public service.

“I have been in private practice as a litigator for about 30 years and recently became the chief of the Juvenile Division of the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office. Now, I have 28 lawyers coming to me for advice and management, and I am the ultimate decision-maker on a lot of really tough issues. So the challenge is the shift in thinking from being a litigator to being chief. This shift reminds me of another time when I had to transition. When I was a little girl, we moved to a new house. When I got to school, I realized I was the first and only African-American to ever attend. My parents had prepared me to treat people as individuals, and that’s what got me through that transition. Now, being able to deal with people and issues one at a time—that’s going to be how I handle this transition. The most important thing I’ve learned is people appreciate it when you listen to them.” —As told to Morgan Smith

Rhonda Hunter is chief of the Juvenile Division, Dallas County District Attorney’s Office


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