Birgit Fladager, daughter of a career naval officer, graduated from a Department of Defense high school at the NATO base in Keflavik, Iceland.

She received her bachelor’s degree in Political Science from St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN in 1983 and her law degree from the University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, CA in 1986.

Fladager was accepted into the U.S. Navy’s Judge Advocate General’s Corps (“JAGC”) while still in law school.  She served on active duty with the Navy from 1986 to 1990.  After attending Officer Indoctrination School in Newport, Rhode Island in 1986, and completing Naval Justice School in early 1987, she was assigned as an Assistant Staff Judge Advocate at Commander, Naval Base San Diego where she served two years.  She was then detailed as a Court-Martial prosecutor and as Assistant Officer-in-Charge of the Legal Service Office at the North Island Naval Air Station (San Diego).  She prosecuted courts-martial for military offenses, such as desertion, and other offenses up to and including child abuse and attempted murder.

Joining the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office in1990, her assignments included the Crimes Against Children/Sexual Assault Unit, the Stanislaus Drug Enforcement Agency and Felony Trial Team.

She became the first Deputy District Attorney assigned to lead the Domestic Violence Unit where she remained for over two years.  She was promoted to Chief Deputy in 1999.  In that capacity, she supervised felony trial prosecutors and was responsible for the homicide on-call team.

Fladager proudly served as a member of the prosecution team that convicted Scott Peterson in 2004 of the murder of his wife, Laci, and unborn child, Conner—a trial that was widely covered in the national media.  As a result of their efforts, the team has been recognized by both the California District Attorneys’ Association (as “Prosecutors of the Year”) and the National District Attorneys’ Association (with their “Homerun Hitter’s Award”).  In March 2006, ‘California Lawyer’ magazine featured them as “Attorneys of the Year” in Criminal Law.

Elected as District Attorney in June 2006, Fladager is the first woman to hold that position in Stanislaus County. She was re-elected in 2010 and 2014.

Significant accomplishments that have occurred during her tenure as DA include the establishment of a vibrant and very successful Family Justice Center where victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse, elder abuse and human trafficking receive support and services that enable them to heal, stay safe, and participate in the criminal prosecution process.  Additionally, Fladager worked to establish the county’s first criminal street gang injunction, which enhances the safety of a neighborhood from violent gang members and gives law enforcement officers additional tools to proactively intervene with gang members before serious crimes occur.

Currently, Fladager is working hard to maintain a strong prosecutorial environment locally, despite rapidly changing statewide laws that are seemingly less favorable toward victims.  Additionally, her office is investing in a technology overhaul that will allow for faster access to information in the courtroom by transitioning to electronic case files.