A Higher Standard of Justice
Shani Curry Mitchell is a public servant and has been for her entire career. Born into a home of public servants, her parents, Archie and Annie Curry, taught her the importance of serving the community. Archie Curry served the people of Rochester for seventeen years as a member of the Rochester Board of Education.
A native Rochesterian, Shani grew up on the city’s southwest side and attended Rochester City School District Schools. She is a proud graduate of Joseph C. Wilson Magnet High School.
Shani is a prosecutor with over thirteen years of experience. She began her career in Atlanta, Georgia at the Fulton County District Attorney's Office. For two years, she prosecuted DUIs and domestic violence cases in the Office of the Clayton County Solicitor General. Most recently, for over five years, Shani worked in the Monroe County District Attorney's Office.
In addition to her hands-on experiences in the criminal legal system, Shani spent three years teaching undergraduates at SUNY Canton, as an assistant professor of criminal justice.
"I am running to restore public trust in the District Attorney's office"
Shani demonstrates her commitment to the legal community in several ways. From May 2015 through December 2016, she served as President of the Rochester Black Bar Association. In addition, she is an active member of the Foundation of the Monroe County Bar Association. Shani is also a member of the Greater Rochester Association of Women Attorneys.
Shani supports her community, taking to heart the lessons learned from her parents. She coaches and mentors students with the Rochester Black Bar Association's Mock Trial team. In addition, Shani is an active member of her church, First Genesis Baptist Church.
Shani earned her Bachelor of Mathematics from Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. She obtained a Juris Doctor from Florida State University College of Law in Tallahassee, Florida. Also, she earned a Masters in Criminal Justice from Boston University, in Boston, Massachusetts. Shani is married to her husband Danny, and together they have five children: Zuri, Dejah, Asani, Miles, and Amari.
“We have to have a better understanding of equality under the law”
Monroe County deserves a District Attorney with the knowledge and understanding of the reforms that are needed, and the boldness to undertake them. Our focus must be on achieving safe and healthy outcomes for our community, not putting the greatest number of people behind bars. Together we can build stronger communities and restore public trust in the District Attorney’s office.
FAIRNESS | JUSTICE
Every person deserves a fair shot at justice. Our office will protect against imbalances in the justice system. The overprosecution of the poor, people of color, and people with mental health disorders has taken a grave toll on our communities. Those who have perpetrated harm must be held accountable, but charges should be proportionate to the seriousness of the offense. We must bring the District Attorney’s office in line with cities and counties across the country that recognize incarceration is a last resort, not a first line of defense.
INTEGRITY | TRANSPARENCY
As gatekeepers of the justice system, District Attorneys must hold themselves and their office to the highest ethical and professional standards. Trust and transparency are foundational to the job. Our office will have a robust Public Integrity Unit with the resources to investigate and prosecute public officials who have broken the community’s trust.
COMMUNITY | COLLABORATION
We all want the same for our families: safe, healthy, and thriving communities. The District Attorney’s office will work closely and collaboratively with the community it serves. We will support community-based safety initiatives focused on education, prevention, and treatment, and continue to explore new and innovative ways to engage with the public.