Mesquite, TX – October 19, 2020 – The City of Mesquite’s Assistant City Attorney Detra Hill has been appointed by the Mesquite City Council to be the next Municipal Court Judge. On Nov. 13, Hill will become the first female and the first African American presiding municipal court judge in the history of Mesquite.
Mayor Bruce Archer, stated, “This is a tremendous moment for the Mesquite community. Detra is a proven leader. Her experience as a long time prosecutor with a reputation of being tough on crime along with having clerked for a federal judge will be a great asset to our municipal court. Indeed, Detra Hill has the background and experience to forge a new chapter in the history of our city. She will be vigilant to insure fair and impartial administration of justice for all the people of Mesquite. I’m also pleased that soon-to-be Judge Hill, is also a 30-year resident of Mesquite who raised her children in MISD. This appointment by the City Council reminds me of how much I believe in Mesquite.”
Hill earned a Juris Doctorate degree in 1986 from the University of Houston Law Center. She also received her undergraduate degree from the University of Houston and graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.
City Manager Cliff Keheley, said, “Detra is a phenomenal professional. Her legal knowledge at both the federal and state level is a tremendous asset to have in our court system. Her dedication to her role as a tough prosecutor and her passion for the people she works with are great traits.” Keheley shared that since Hill’s arrival to the City in 2014, she has helped the Municipal Court implement significant changes and improvements to its processes.
Hill, who is licensed to practice law in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, was the previous Assistant City Attorney for 14 years in the City Attorney’s Office for the City of Dallas. For five years, she led the City Attorney’s Criminal Law and Police Division. During this time, Hill supervised 17 attorneys in the Prosecution and Legal Sections and was the chief legal advisor to the Dallas Police Department. Additionally, she was an instructor to the Dallas Police Academy on legal subjects and guided citizen patrol groups on various legal topics.
Despite the time she commits to her husband of 37 years and their two children, Hill still finds opportunities to volunteer in the community. She is an active member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., which is an organization of college educated women committed to the constructive development of its members and to public service with a primary focus on the Black community. She also serves on the board for Making Chemo Bearable, a non-profit cancer support organization.
Current Municipal Court Judge, Steve Crane, announced his retirement earlier this year. The history of municipal judges in Mesquite appointed by the City Council is:
- Stephen C. Crane - Appointed by Council on March 15, 2010 effective April 1, 2010 and sworn in on April 1, 2010
- David B. Rosen - Appointed by Council on March 7, 1988, sworn in on March 14, 1988 and served until March 31, 2010
- George A. Boyce - Appointed by Council on September 10, 1981, sworn in on September 10, 1981 and served until December 1987
- Curt Austin - Appointed by Council on July 20, 1959, effective August 1, 1959 and served until June 1981
- Robert E. White - Appointed by Council on September 6, 1955 and served until July 1959