Anne Swern, a longtime prosecutor who rose through the ranks to become first assistant district attorney in the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, has left the agency. Her last day was Feb. 28, more than 33 years after she joined the agency right out of law school. She worked under four district attorneys: Eugene Gold, Elizabeth Holtzman, Charles Hynes and, most recently, Kenneth Thompson.
As first assistant, Swern’s responsibilities included overseeing the office’s alternative sentencing policy and its Drug Treatment Alternative to Prison program, developing and enacting the borough’s problem-solving courts, and assisting the office’s work on re-entry matters. The office has been lauded for its work in diversion, incarceration alternatives and re-entry (NYLJ, Dec. 27, 2013). She also coordinated efforts with other agencies, including the police department and Office of Court Administration.
“It was really a labor of love and an opportunity to do great work,” said Swern, but added, “It was time to go and I am very much looking forward to my next big thing.”
Swern, 57, said there are “a couple things I’m exploring now.” She declined to specify, but said her next step would “build on the 33 years of experience” she gained at the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, where she has worked since graduating from Brooklyn Law School in 1980.
Swern is an adjunct professor at her alma mater and teaches a course entitled “Problem Solving Justice.” Swern said she intends to keep teaching in addition to taking on new work.
Renee Gregory has replaced Swern as First Assistant District Attorney.