BRYAN, Tex. (KBTX) - The Texas State Bar's Criminal Justice Section has named Brazos County District Attorney Jarvis Parsons their Prosecutor of the Year.
Texas District and County Attorneys Association (TDCAA) says the award is granted to prosecutors who show leadership and commitment to their prosecution, and to the criminal justice system as a whole.
The organization highlighted Parsons’ work with crime victims and the community in Brazos County as a major factor in his selection, as well as his work as President of TDCAA’s Board of Directors, his work on the Texas Forensic Science Commission, the creation of the “Cut It Out” program to train hair professionals to recognize signs of domestic violence, the creation of Brazos County’s Citizens Prosecutor Academy, his work as the chair of TDCAA’s Diversity, Recruitment, and Retention Committee, and Parsons’ work training prosecutors across the country on topics including cognitive bias.
“Jarvis is a thoughtful, energetic, and enthusiastic leader in criminal prosecution,” said TDCAA Executive Director Rob Kepple. “He has been on the cutting edge of issues important to the criminal justice system, and we have all benefitted from that. What’s more, he has taken the time to not just improve prosecution in his community, but also to share his knowledge and expertise with others—to the benefit of Texas as a whole.”
“I believe our mandate to do justice does not apply only to our individual cases,” said Parsons. “I believe prosecutors have a duty to try to effect change and do justice in every area of criminal justice. This is why working with the Forensic Science Commission is so important. Prosecutors are ministers of justice, and it’s our duty to make sure the evidence used in trial is accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.”
“I am so thankful that I have the privilege of being a prosecutor,” Parsons furthered. It’s an incredibly humbling feeling to be recognized by your peers. I know first-hand the incredible work prosecutors across the state of Texas are doing on the local and statewide level—to receive an award from individuals who have inspired me is a tremendous honor.”
Governor Abbott reappointed Parsons to the state’s Forensic Science Commission on Thursday. The commission provides oversight over Texas crime laboratories and other entities conducting forensic analyses for use in criminal proceedings and provides an accreditation mandate responsible for establishing procedures, policies, and practices to improve the quality of forensic analyses conducted in Texas. His new term lasts through 2021.
TDCAA will present the award next week at their annual conference in Corpus Christi.