Advocate . Expert . Professor
Ann Johnson is from Houston, Texas, the youngest of six children of the Honorable Jake and the Honorable Carolyn Marks Johnson. Growing up, she learned the value of hard work, honor of public service and the need to fight for those unable to speak for themselves. Ann's professional career has led her to fight for strengthening families by supporting the rights of women and children seeking justice from their abuse.
Ann's passionate about strengthening our community with proper investment in education and health. This passion led her to run for Texas State Representative where months of community conversations resulted in critical community endorsements, such as the Houston Chronicle, Annie's List and Texas Parent PAC. While Ann was not elected, the conversations led to positive change in District 134, and placed her on a path to continue the fight against exploitation.
Ann is about action and results. Her work on behalf of victims of human trafficking resulted in the development of two problem solving courts as a founding member of Harris County GIRLS (Growing Independence and Restoring Lives) Court serving juveniles at-risk of exploitation victimization and SAFE (Survivors Acquiring Freedom and Empowerment) Court, established following receipt of a Department of Justice Smart Prosecution Grant serving those engaging in prostitution between ages 17-25 without a current defense as a human trafficking victim.
Ann is also a member of the American Leadership Forum’s Criminal Justice Fellows Program.
Ann was recently appointed and serves on The Texas Children’s Justice Act Task Force.
Ann zealously advocates against forms of injustice.
For nearly a decade, Ann has been recognized as an expert in Texas Law for the protection of victims of human trafficking. Her passion and knowledge started with the representation of a 13-year old child charged with prostitution. This led to, a case of first impression, the foundation of law protecting child victims. In addition to being a founding member of prostitution related problem solving courts, Ann started and developed the Human Trafficking Section for the Harris County District Attorney's Office from February 2013 until January 2017. Her efforts along with law enforcement and public and private partnerships resulted in a more balanced attack of better identifying victims, and increased prosecution of Pimps and Johns.
Many "Johns" believe their criminal action of buying sex is victimless. They are wrong! Not only do the sold suffer a lifetime of damage, but if you are married and have children - or ever want to be married and have children - they suffer from your disturbingly poor choice. If I can help them, by representing you, I will.
Ann's selection as an adjunct professor of law at South Texas College of Law Houston, began in 2001 and continues today. Ann teaches courses in Voir Dire and Jury Communication and Mock Trial Litigation.
Ann has been on the faculty at the Trial Lawyers College started by the winningest trial lawyer in American history, Gerry Spence. Ann credits TLC with a new life and recommends any eligible attorneys to apply, and if accepted, "jump in with both feet" the way she was encouraged to do by one of her mentors.
Ann is often asked to present to community and professional organizations. She loves teaching.
Education and Work Experience
- South Texas College of Law Houston, Doctor of Jurisprudence, May 2001
- The University of Texas at Austin, Double Major: History – Government, Bachelor of Arts Degree, May 1998
- The Harris County District Attorney’s Office
- February 2013 – January 2017 Assistant District Attorney - Human Trafficking Specialist / Section Chief
- September 2002 – December 2005 Assistant District Attorney
- Johnson Law Firm PC
- August 2006 – February 2013 Juvenile, Criminal, and Civil Litigation and Appeals
- Terry W. Yates and Associates
- August 2008 – January 2010 Criminal Defense – Contract
- The Fourteenth Court of Appeals
- September 2001 – August 2002 Briefing Attorney for The Honorable Justice Leslie Brock Yates
- South Texas College of Law Houston
- Fall 2001 – Present Adjunct Professor – Mock Trial Litigation and Voir Dire & Jury Communication
- Professor Shelby Moore, South Texas College of Law
- July 1999 – November 1999 Research Assistant
OTHER WORK EXPERIENCE:
- HLB Mortgage
- January 2006 – August 2007 Account Executive
- Saint Paul’s United Methodist Church
- June 1999 – August 1999 Interim Youth Director
- Texas State Representative Craig Eiland
- August 1997 – August 1998
- January 1995 – May 1995 Legislative Assistant, Austin Legislative Office
- 53rd Presidential Inaugural Committee
- December 1996 – January 1997 Office of Congressional Affairs, Washington, D.C.
- Clinton / Gore 96
- September 1996 – November 1996 Special Assistant for Congressional Affairs, Washington, D.C.
- The White House
- November 1996 Staff Assistant – Office of Legislative Affairs – House Liaison Office
- November 1995 – September 1996 Staff Assistant – Office of Legislative Affairs – House Liaison Office
- August 1995 – November 1995 Intern – Office of Legislative Affairs – Director’s Office
- May 1995 – July 1995 Intern – Office of Intergovernmental Affairs – Director’s Office
- United States Congressman Jack Brooks
- June 1994 – August 1994 Intern – Judiciary Committee, Washington, D.C.
- Texas State Representative Mike Martin
- January 1993 – May 1993 Legislative Assistant, Austin Legislative Office
- June 1993 – August 1993 Legislative Assistant, Local District Office
- August 1993 – June 1994 Legislative Assistant, Austin Legislative Office
HONORS AND ACHIEVEMENTS
- American Leadership Forum, Senior Fellow, Criminal Justice Class 2, March 2011
- Trial Lawyer’s College, Dubois, Wyoming, Graduate, July 2009
- Dean’s Outstanding Student Advocate Award, South Texas College of Law Houston, May 2001
- The Order of Barristers
- South Texas College of Law Houston Varsity Moot Court and Mock Trial:
- American Bar Association National Moot Court Competition - National Finals Winning Team and Second Best Advocate, Regionals Winning Team and Best Advocate
- National Mock Trial Competition – Regionals, Spring 2001
- Association of the Bar of the City of New York National Moot Court Competition, National Finals Second Best Team and Second Best Advocate
- American College of Trial Lawyers, Nationals, Best Oral Argument Runner Up and Regionals Winning Team and Best Advocate
- The Tournament of Champions, Mock Trial Competition, Fall 2000
- Texas Young Lawyers Association State Moot Court Competition, Summer 2000, Winning Team
- American Trial Lawyers Association National Mock Trial Competition – Regionals, Spring 2000, Finalist
- William and Mary Moot Court Competition, Spring 2000
- Texas Mock Trial Invitational, Fall 1999
- Leroy Jeffers Memorial Moot Court Competition, South Texas College of Law Houston, Fall 1999, Best Team, Sixth Best Brief, Third Best Advocate
- American Bar Association, Law Student Division National Vice Chair, November 1999 – August 2001
- ABA Standing Committee on Membership, Student Liaison, July 2000 – August 2001
- Saint Paul’s Methodist Church, Senior High Sunday School Teacher
- Student Bar Association, South Texas College of Law Houston
- Freshman Senator, 1999-2000, 1L Representative, 1998-1999
- Methodist Health Care Houston Marathon 1998 and 1999 – Finisher
- YMCA Teen Court, Austin – Volunteer – August 1997 – May 1998
- American Academy of Achievement, Las Vegas, Nevada - June 1992
- Texas State Veterans of Foreign Wars’ Voice of Democracy Winner 1992, National Ninth Place Winner