Theresa Diane Clarkson
Diane Clarkson, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney with the Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, Tacoma, Washington. Diane started her legal career path at Berea College, in Berea, Kentucky, when, just prior to graduating with Bachelor Degrees in French, English, and Music. A political science instructor, Professor Berheide, took up a mentorship with Diane, a student he had only seen around the campus and never had in class. The professor suggested she consider law school and he made himself available for LSAT prep four days a week, after classes. Professor Berheide also arranged for campus transportation to Lexington, Kentucky, where the LSAT was held in the summer of 1984.
Diane went on to Howard University School of Law, where she graduated and later moved to Tacoma, Washington to begin her professional career. Diane set up introductory interviews with several of the Who’s Who in Tacoma. Each interview led to someone else and, eventually, met with Marilyn Walton, who introduced her to Dennis Flannigan and her first “real” job in Pierce County. Diane began her work in Tacoma, Pierce County, with then, County Councilmember, Dennis Flannigan who worked hard on several boards and committees. Mr. Flannigan introduced Diane to the community as a whole and to lawyers and judges in the local Pierce County area.
Diane met, the late, Daisy Stallworth, who took interest in her and also helped guide her around the people and places in Pierce County. After passing the Washington State bar, Diane was grounded in the community and ready to serve. She applied for the public defender’s office, but there were no openings at the time. Diane received a phone call from the prosecutor’s office and, thinking she would give it a try for a few years, just to gain courtroom experience, she has been with the office for over 18 years.
Diane has worked in the drug unit, special assaults unit, juvenile sexual assault unit, has been the domestic violence supervisor, and now works in the robbery/assault unit at the Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office. She loves her work and has spent years working with youths to encourage them to focus and set career goals for themselves. She enjoys speaking to hopeful young people who are thinking about the possibilities of law school.
When Diane is not at work, she still enjoys her music, and gets pure joy from her daughters who both play musical instruments and have interests in forensic science and the law.