Local girl elected as San Bernardino County judge

Denise Trager Dvorak, daughter of Margaret and Bruce Trager, made a name for herself in the world of law and order, and was elected as a Superior Court Judge in San Bernardino County in 2016. Here is just some of her story.

Denise was born and raised in Paso Robles where she has deep family roots. Her grandfather was Walter (Dutch) Trager, a Justice of the Peace and Constable in the Township of Paso Robles in the 1950’s, and her grandmother, Ora Mae Trager was the Superintendent of Schools.

She graduated from Paso Robles High School in 1973 and after graduating from Cuesta College, she worked for the Atascadero Law Firm of Wright, Ream and Peterson as a Paralegal and Office Manager.

Denise went to law school, became a lawyer in 1986, and went to work for the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s office as a Prosecuting Attorney. While at the DA’s office, Denise prosecuted various types of criminal cases such as gangs, narcotics, child abuse and homicides.

She was promoted to Supervising Deputy District Attorney and served in multiple positions managing attorneys in the Juvenile Division, Adult Criminal, Training & Staff Development, and also attorneys prosecuting asset forfeiture, Insurance Fraud, Cold Case Homicides, and Consumer and Environmental protection.

Denise was an active member of the Child Death Review Team and Domestic Violence Death Review Team. She became a statewide mentor for the California District Attorney’s Association and advised prosecutors statewide in prosecuting child sexual assault cases and also helped form the S.B. County’s Animal Cruelty Task Force.

She ran for the position of Superior Court Judge in San Bernardino County, and was elected to the bench in November 2016. Judge (Trager) Dvorak began a new career, presiding over cases in San Bernardino County.

Denise and her husband, a retired San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Captain, Ross Dvorak, have made their home in southern California for 25 years. Their 23-year-old son, is a Lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force, currently in flight training.

Judge Dvorak often visits her sister, Laurie (Trager) Mitchell, Niece Ashley Hamman, and friends in Paso Robles, where she plans to return for retirement.

Publisher’s Note: We love stories like this about the success of our local kids, and especially when they plan to come back home and rejoin our wonderful community.