Moore strives to be more for herself, community

Published 1:00 pm Monday, April 15, 2019

By Dawn Burleigh

The Orange Leader


When one first meets Kaneshia Moore, her smiles and stance show confidence many wish they had themselves.

Moore is an Assistant District Attorney with the Orange County District Attorney’s Office. She began in June 2018 after returning home to Beaumont when Hurricane Harvey struck Rockport, Texas, not once but twice.

“I ended up in Houston and San Antonio after Harvey,” Moor said. “I knew I did not want to be away from my family during another storm, so I moved to Beaumont.”

Working in Beaumont as a lawyer was not quite what she wanted, so she applied for an opening in Orange.

“When I interned in Beaumont, I saw too many people I knew from church or school,” Moore said.

Attending law school was not her first choice when she was younger.

“When I grew up as a teenager, I was raised in a housing project on food stamps,” Moore said. “I did not have the role models so it was nothing I ever thought about.”

She did know she would attend college.

“My biological father, when I was 10, went to prison,” Moor said. “I wanted to show him I am a great person.”

It was while attending college she became involved in Debate.

“I was told I would be a good lawyer,” Moore said.

Instead, she became a probation officer.

“It was not for me,” Moore said. “It was asking the same questions every day.”

Again, she had not thought of becoming a teacher but did work as a teacher for five years.

“I thought it had to be more exciting,” Moore said. “One interview I was asked if I was O.K. with being cussed out. I said, ‘Lord this can not be the job for me.’ It was the one that called me back.”

Moore did clarify the school district conducting the interview was not in Orange County.

Being a teacher was just the motivation Moore needed to consider law school.

“It helped me decide, ‘You can do it,’” Moore said.

So in 2013, she gave notice and returned to school.

“It was a struggle,” Moore said. “It was not fun at all, but I wanted to do it. I was determined to finish.”

All while raising her two children now ages 16 and 4.

It was worth it.

“The office is awesome,” Moore said. “We are like a second family which makes it worth coming to work every day.”

She added she enjoys seeing a defendant take responsibility and hear about changes they make to change their path.

“Especially juveniles,” Moore said. “When they can start believing they can.”

Many times, ADAs do not get to interact with the juvenile because of their age.

“It is good to hear later one that they turned around and are doing better,” Moore said.

Having seen an increase in juvenile committed crimes, Moore is working on implanting a program in Orange County to empower girls and teach them to be strong.

“The increase is everywhere,” Moore said. “It is different now with influences out there. They need to learn to be stronger to say no. Times have changed.”

District Attorney John Kimbrough described Moore as energetic and a valuable asset to the office.

“She works with misdemeanor and juvenile cases,” Kimbrough said. “The duty of a prosecutor is not to convict but to see justice is done. She fully understands that.”

He is also looking forward to the program, BTW, Moore is working on.

“We all enjoy helping people,” Kimbrough said.

BTW is an acronym for Born To Win, which also describes Moore.