Hayden Announces Recent Appointments to Leadership Team

Suffolk District Attorney Kevin Hayden today announced several appointments to his leadership team as he shapes the direction of the office for his four-year term. The appointments include:

• Byron Knight, Second Assistant District Attorney—Byron has been in private practice specializing in criminal defense since 2015.  Prior to that he served deputy legal counsel in the office of the governor’s legal counsel and held numerous prosecutor and investigator positions in the Suffolk district attorney’s office and Massachusetts attorney general’s office.

• Maria Romero, Chief Legal Counsel—Maria has served as assistant general counsel in the Suffolk sheriff’s office since 2001.  Maria began her career in the Suffolk district attorney’s office, first in Dorchester district court and then on the general felony team and the narcotics and asset forfeiture unit. 

• Joseph Janezic, III, Chief, Crime Strategies Bureau—Joseph has led the gang and community prosecutions unit in the Plymouth district attorney’s office since 2016.  Prior to that he served as deputy chief and then chief of the Suffolk DA gang and Safe Neighborhood Initiative units and as an assistant attorney general.      

• Jennifer Zalnasky, Chief, Integrity Review Bureau—Jennifer has been chief of the appeals unit in the Berkshire district attorney’s office since early 2021.  She served as an assistant attorney general from 2014 to 2021 in the criminal bureau-appeals division and from 2008 to 2014 as assistant general counsel for the Sex Offender Registry Board.  Prior to her state service Jennifer spent seven years in private practice.

• David McGowan, Chief, Appeals Unit—David began his career in the Suffolk district attorney’s appeal unit in 2007 and subsequently served in the major felony bureau, narcotics and asset forfeiture unit, domestic violence and sexual assault unit and senior trial unit, and homicide unit.  He has also served as chief of arson and fire investigations since 2013.                                                 

• Marc Tohme, Chief of Municipal and District Courts—Marc has served as deputy chief of district courts since January 2020 and has been acting chief since December 2022.  Marc started his career in 2013 as an assistant district attorney in Dorchester BMC and also served on the gang unit.

• Linda Champion, Municipal and District Court Legal Counsel—Linda has served as assistant general counsel for the Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accidents since 2013.  She worked as a superior court and district court assistant district attorney in the Suffolk district attorney’s office from 2011 to 2013 and has extensive private practice experience.

• Tracy Litthcut, Special Advisor, Youth Initiatives and DEI—Tracy has over 20 years of public sector experience with the Boston mayor’s office and other organizations in policy development, coalition building, proposal writing, violence prevention programming and family/youth engagement. 

“I’m extremely fortunate to have such an accomplished group of professionals helping me to achieve the many objectives I have for the office, including greater community engagement, continued emphasis on firearm crimes and juvenile and young adult alternative resolution initiatives, data-based prevention and intervention strategies, and conviction and sentencing integrity,” Hayden said.

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