Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce Dudley celebrates career on eve of retirement


SANTA BARBARA, Calif. — Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce Dudley celebrated her legacy on the eve of her retirement.

Friends and family joined us for dinner and dancing at the El Paseo restaurant on a rainy Monday evening.

Dudley received a standing ovation after remarks that included the following list of advice. “I am passionate about improving the quality of life for others, surrounded by good people of diverse backgrounds, preferably in nature, eating and drinking food that nourishes my palate and soul, but my mother in moderation, as said.”

Dudley added that people should look for mentors and look for the good in others, especially family.

Calling it a necessity of music and art rather than a luxury, she told the crowd full of friends and loved ones to take care of each day and focus on the beauty that surrounds you.

She also quoted Mahatma Gandhi.

Then she put on her dancing shoes and invited everyone to the dance floor.

“I’m ending your district attorney career by saying I love you. Now let’s dance.”

Dudley was first elected to the DA in 2010 after serving as a DA Deputy for 20 years.

She is known for creating the Arson Task Force, a school refusal program, to crack down on elder abuse.

Dudley said he was a little scared to retire after working so long.

Her friends and colleagues admired her unique way of doing things.

Former Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey, who was unable to attend due to the coronavirus pandemic, said, “Joyce is relentless in her love for her family and friends, and while she is retired from work, she is retiring from life. It’s not that I’m here.”

Dudley raised her sons with her late husband, John, while she was in law school.

Both Dudley and Lacy had lost their husbands to cancer and felt connected to their loss and their careers.

Elected District Attorney John Savnock covered the topics of the first conference and the unconventional conferences of the past year.

“You could say it’s quirky and irreverent, but it’s something she cares about and she wants to dig deeper into.”

Dudley helps her take the vows of succession on Tuesday morning.

Then she hits an incline.

“Next is skiing for two months. I’ve always dreamed of being able to ski every day, so I’m going to make that dream come true,” said Dudley. Because this is what I want to do. “



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