Dan Conley has been the Suffolk County District Attorney since 2002. In this role he acts as the chief law enforcement officer for Boston, Chelsea, Revere, and Winthrop, overseeing an office of 265 people who prosecute over 35,000 criminal cases. A lifelong Boston resident, Conley had a long history of public service, even before he began his time as the District Attorney. After graduating from the Suffolk University Law School, he served for nine years as an Assistant District Attorney (ADA) in the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, prosecuting homicides, domestic violence and other serious felonies. He was then one of the few state prosecutor’s named to the state’s first anti-gang violence task force in the 1980s and 1990s. This experience inspired him to create positive first interactions between the prosecutors and the people they serve and led to the office’s annual soccer and basketball tournaments in Dorchester, Reading Day program at Boston schools, and Overcoming Violence curriculum for youth across Suffolk County. After serving as ADA, Conley ran for City Councilor in 1994 and won the District 5 seat, and in his eight years in the office, he served as the chair of the Council’s Public Safety Commission. In 2002 he won the position of Suffolk County District Attorney, and since then he has led a period of innovation and improvement that has revolutionized the prosecutor’s role in the state criminal justice system. One change is the implementation of the “Boston Model” a system for investigating police-involved fatalities that has garnered national praise for top-quality, prosecutor-led investigations marked by unprecedented transparency. To prevent miscarriages in justice, Conley has not only worked to vacate the convictions of almost a dozen wrongly convicted men but has also instituted changes in how eyewitness evidence was used in prosecution. He also launched the state’s first Conviction Integrity Program and implemented a continuing education program for prosecutors which far exceeds Massachusetts’ requirements for lawyers once they pass the bar. Conley has also pursued strategies to reduce the population of the Suffolk County House of Correction by 40% and reduce Massachusetts’ overall incarceration rate while reducing violent crime in Boston to historic lows. He also has worked on some significant legislative accomplishments in his time as District Attorney such as increasing the statute of limitations for sexual crimes, creating a Witness Protection Fund and drafting a “safe harbor” provision in the state’s human trafficking law. Although he is retiring from his post as district attorney this year, he will continue to make a difference in the community he calls home.
District Attorney Dan Conley