Nydia D. Thomas, J.D. is the Director of Training. She has an extensive background in juvenile justice system law, innovation, and reform. She has served as Deputy General Counsel and Special Counsel for Legal Education and Technical Assistance at the Texas Juvenile Justice Department (TJJD) and its predecessor agency. She joined the Lone Star Justice Alliance team in September 2019. Nydia is recognized for her work as a principal facilitator and subject-matter resource for legislative practitioner workgroups as well as a liaison for interagency and stakeholder engagement. She has also served as a recurring professional development trainer and faculty member for the Correctional Management Institute of Texas, the Juvenile Law Section of the State Bar of Texas as well as child-serving and criminal justice system partners. She was the contributing author and managing editor of the legal treatise Texas Juvenile Law, 5th – 9th editions and has written numerous professional articles.
Nydia is a graduate of Howard University School of Law in Washington, DC and gained valuable experience on Capitol Hill while working for a Member of Congress and a congressional research foundation. Nydia was also in private practice in suburban Houston, a college instructor, and coordinator for a statewide delinquency prevention program. Nydia is a former council member and Mayor-Pro Tem of Cleveland, Texas and has received both gubernatorial and attorney general appointments. She is a Past Chair of the Juvenile Law Section of the State Bar of Texas. She has served on the Texas Violent Gang Task Force Advisory Board, the Interstate Compact for Juveniles State Council, the Juvenile Records Advisory Committee and the Statewide Disproportionality Task Force. In 2018, she was the recipient of the Robert O. Dawson Visionary Leadership in Juvenile Justice Award from the Juvenile Law Section of the State Bar of Texas. In her spare time, Nydia enjoys genealogy research, creative writing, and travel.