John T. Adams was elected District Attorney of Berks County in 2008. Prior to 2008, John was an associate attorney at Rhoda, Stoudt & Bradley in Reading, Pennsylvania from 1990-1992.He served as an Assistant District Attorney with the Berks County District Attorney’s Office from 1992-1994 and as a partner in the law firm of Linton, Distasio, Adams & Edwards, P.C. from 1994 through 2007. In November 2007, John was elected District Attorney of Berks County. He was re-elected in 2011. Mr. Adams supervises a staff of 31 attorneys, 23 support staff, and 33 detectives.
District Attorney Adams is a lifelong resident of Berks County. He’s the fifth child born to the late Reverend Dr. Garnet and the late Vera Warner Adams. John was raised in Womelsdorf at the Bethany Children’s Home where his father was the Superintendent for 35 years until his retirement in 1989.
District Attorney Adams resides in Cumru Township with his wife Betsy and four daughters. District Attorney Adams has strong family ties to Berks County. His sister, Dr. Betsy Adams, is the Principal of Conrad Weiser High School. His brother, Russell Adams, is a retired Berks County Assistant Chief of Juvenile Probation. His sister-in-law, Faith Adams, is a retired Governor Mifflin School Teacher. District Attorney Adams Brother, Gar, is retired sailing his boat in Honduras.
District Attorney Adams graduated from Conrad Weiser High School in 1979. He graduated from Shippensburg University in 1983 with a Bachelor of Science degree. After graduation from Shippensburg, John returned to Berks County where he served as a Adult Probation and Parole Officer in the Berks County Adult Probation and Parole Office until the Fall of 1987. In the Fall of 1987, John began his legal career by attending the New England School of Law in Boston, Massachusetts. District Attorney Adams graduated with Honors from the New England School of Law in 1990.
District Attorney Adams is an active member of the community and donates his time to various organizations. He has been recognized by various agencies for his work. In 1997, District Attorney Adams received the W. Richard Eshelmen award from the Berks County Prison Society. In 2006, District Attorney Adams was awarded the Berks County Pretrial Services President's Award for special dedication to the agency, the Justice System, and the community. In 2010, District Attorney Adams was awarded the Law Enforcement Officer of the Year award by Crime Alert Berks County. In 2011, District Attorney Adams was presented a distinguished honors award from Berks County Children & Youth and the Citizens Advisory Board for years of exemplary service to the children of Berks County. He was also honored in 2011 with the President's Award from Council on Chemical Abuse for commitment, leadership and efforts to combat substance abuse and addiction disease. In 2012, District Attorney Adams received the President's Award from the Berks County Chiefs of Police Association. In 2013, District Attorney Adams received the Legal Professional/Law Enforcement Award from Caron Foundation. In 2013, District Attorney Adams received the BCPS (Berks County Prison Society) President's Award for his special dedication to the agency, the Justice System, and the community.
District Attorney Adams is a former board member of Prospectus and a former Member of the Selective Services Board. District Attorney Adams also has served on the Cumru Township Fire Study Committee.
He is presently a member of the Advisory Board for Crime Alert Berks County, a member of the Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge #71, a member of the Berks County Chiefs of Police Association, an executive committee member for the Criminal Justice Advisory Board, former chairman and member of the Berks County Bar Association Criminal Law Committee, member of the Sinking Spring Family YMCA Board, member of the Mental Health and Justice Advisory Committee of the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency and a member of the Berks Connections/Pretrial Services Board of Directors.
In 2009, District Attorney Adams was elected to the Executive Committee of the Pennsylvania District Attorney's Institute and was subsequently elected to the Executive Committee of the Pennsylvania District Attorney's Association in 2010.
On July 12, 2017, District Attorney Adams was named president of the Pennsylvania District Attorney's Association. DA Adams will serve as president for the next year, taking over the position from David J. Arnold Jr. of Lebanon County. "I feel very honored that I've been chosen by my peers to lead this organization." "It's been a great resource for me when I became DA and remained a great resource for my office and for DA's throughout the state". - DA Adams