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NAPD Executive Leadership Institute Los Angeles 2019 has ended
avatar for Traci Macuga

Traci Macuga

Tracy M. Macuga became the Public Defender for Santa Barbara County in November 2016, and currently oversees a FY19/20 budget of $13.6 million and a staff of roughly 80 employees.  The Office has adopted Tracy’s vision of an innovative model of Holistic Defense which is data-driven, community orientated and client centered to achieve evidence based dispositions that are effective in reducing recidivism, restoring lives, and enhancing the quality of life for everyone in our community.  Shift in focus from attorney to advocate, representation that is client-focused and community-based.  Ms. Macuga is a graduate of California Western School of Law in San Diego and received her undergraduate degree from Loyola University of Chicago. She has more than 28 years of experience in criminal defense law, having served in the Office of the Public Defender in Riverside and San Diego counties as well as in private practice.
Prior to coming to Santa Barbara County in November 2016, she was the Assistant Public Defender of Riverside County where she was responsible for all aspects of operations of the Southwest Division including joint oversight of the Complex Litigation Unit (death penalty and sex crimes); Writs and Appeals; and a countywide office-training program including interns, externs and post-bars. From 1992 to 2008, Ms. Macuga was a litigation attorney representing clients accused of committing serious and violent felonies. She has tried more than 100 complex felony matters, including special-circumstance homicides, through to verdict.
Tracy is a proven and effective leader who has been active in the public defense reform movement, both locally and nationally, for many years. She is a member of the National Association for Public Defense and serves on the Education committee. Additionally, she presents at conferences both locally and nationally in regards to Public Defense. Ms. Macuga has become an expert at “thinking outside the box.” She has established herself as an ethical, hard hitting advocate, with a desire for justice not only among her peers, but also with the defense bar and bench. As a defense attorney, Ms. Macuga is an understanding and compassionate advocate who is willing to listen to her client’s perspective while taking on the prosecution. Throughout her career, she has developed superior trial skills in the courtroom and exemplary negotiation skills outside the courtroom. In her review and preparation of cases, Ms. Macuga is hardworking, inventive in case development and detail oriented in every aspect of each client’s case.