Desiree Lassiter

Attorney Advisor Defender Services Office, Training Division
Photo of Desiree Lassiter


Desiree Lassiter received a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from the Massachusetts
Institute of Technology, where she was awarded the Institute’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership
Award. Following MIT, Desiree continued her chemical engineering studies at the University of
California, Los Angeles, where she was awarded the Eugene V. Cota-Robles Fellowship and received a
Master of Science degree. Desiree went on to earn her Juris Doctor from the University of California,
Berkeley School of Law. At Berkeley Law, Desiree received the Francine Diaz Memorial Award and was a
member of the California Law Review, Berkeley Law’s Death Penalty Clinic, and the La Raza Law
Students Association. While in law school, Desiree interned for Judge Kim McLane Wardlaw of the
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, the Public Defender Service for the District of
Columbia, and the Southern Center for Human Rights. After graduating law school, Desiree was
admitted to practice law in the state of New York and before the United States Patent and Trademark
Office. Desiree began her legal career as a trial attorney at the Bronx Defenders, a holistic public
defender office in New York City. At the Bronx Defenders, Desiree was one of two experts to handle and
litigate all cases pertaining to adolescents charged as adults for violent felony offenses. Desiree has
since transitioned to federal practice and served as an assistant federal public defender in the District of
Maryland for several years. Desiree is currently serving as an attorney advisor with the Defender
Services Office, Training Division.