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Meet the U.S. Attorney

Sandra J. Hairston

Acting United States Attorney

Middle District of North Carolina

Sandra J. Hairston is the Acting United States Attorney for the Middle District of North Carolina (MDNC). Ms. Hairston joined the United States Attorney’s Office for the MDNC in 1990. During her thirty-year tenure as an Assistant United States Attorney, Ms. Hairston has served as Deputy Chief of the Criminal Division and Lead Attorney in the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Section in the MDNC. She is also the Professional Responsibility Officer, Ethics Advisor, and Criminal Discovery Coordinator for the MDNC. Ms. Hairston served as Acting United States Attorney for the Middle District of North Carolina from January 14, 2017 until January 3, 2018. She was named First Assistant United States Attorney in April  2014.

From April 1994 until June 1996, Ms. Hairston served as Chief of the Criminal Division in the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina. Ms. Hairston returned to the MDNC in late June 1996.

Ms. Hairston began her legal career in 1987 as an Assistant District Attorney in the Thirteenth Prosecutorial District of North Carolina.

Ms. Hairston is a 1981 graduate of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English.  In 1987, she was awarded the degree of Juris Doctor from the North Carolina Central University School of Law in Durham, North Carolina.

In 2002, Ms. Hairston received the Director’s Award from the Executive Office for United States Attorneys for Superior Performance as an Assistant United States Attorney.

Ms. Hairston was the 2015 recipient of the Peter S. Gilchrist III Award, which is given by the Criminal Justice Section of the North Carolina Bar Association to a Prosecutor “who exemplifies the highest ideals of the profession.”

Updated April 9, 2021

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