Combining strategic expertise with a passion for her clients’ welfare in a way few attorneys can match, Heather Barbieri is known as a force to be reckoned with in criminal law. For over 25 years, she has focused her talents and energy toward protecting those accused of wrongdoing and helping them get their lives back on track. She has developed a reputation for success in defending clients accused of very serious, complex crimes that other attorneys would rather not handle.
“When the government is coming after you with all of their resources, all of their money, and all of their power,” she explains, “you should have a team ready to fight for you with just as much vigor.” She inspires her team to approach every situation with a positive attitude and to think creatively to uncover every available option for defense.
In addition, Heather makes use of the full talents of her team in every case, collaborating to develop strategies and put every team member’s strength to best use. “We end up having a lot of more ideas and making sure a lot less slips through the cracks because we’ve got so many people working on each case,” she notes She spearheaded development of a 115 point defense checklist to ensure that no stone is left unturned.
In a field where clients are often viewed as a case rather than an individual, Heather and her team treat clients differently. “I see every person as a human being and believe they should be treated with the utmost respect and kindness,” she explains.
With Heather’s singular devotion to defending the accused, it is not surprising that she earned her board certification from the Texas Board of Legal Specialization within her first decade of practice and that she has maintained her certification in criminal law continuously since 2005. Her peers in the legal field have recognized her effectiveness in defense and devotion to client welfare, naming her the Texas Superlawyers® list every year since 2013. She has also been ranked on the Rising Stars list, selected as one of the Best Lawyers in Dallas by D Magazine, and been named among Top Women Lawyers in Texas by Texas Monthly for the past five years running.
Colleagues elected her President of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, the largest state association for criminal defense attorneys in the country. She has served on the board of the Association since 2012 and held every officer position within the organization, as well as numerous committee positions. The Association has also honored her with the Percy Foreman Lawyer of the Year Award.
Colleagues in the field of criminal defense have also elected her President of the Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, and she is a Fellow in the prestigious Honorable Curt B. Henderson Inn of Court.
Attorneys, judges, and clients all respect Heather’s knowledge and dedication. She is gratified that her clients have faith in her and her team. “They willingly put their life into my hands and trust that I'm gonna do everything possible to get them through to the other side. When they can feel confident in us as we help them get back to their normal life as much as possible, that means they’re going to be at peace. Putting that trust in us that helps us find the best possible outcome.”
- State Bar of Texas, 1998
- U.S. District Court Northern District of Texas, 1999
- U.S. District Court Eastern District of Texas, 2000
- Fifth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals, 2016
- United States Supreme Court, 2018
Board Certified in Criminal Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization 2005, recertified 2010, 2015, 2020
Professional Associations and Memberships
- President, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, 2022-2023
- Vice-President, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, 2020 – 2021
- Second Vice-President, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, 2019 – 2020
- Treasurer, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, 2018-19
- Secretary, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, 2017-18
- Board Member, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, 2012 - 2019
- Executive Committee Member, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, 2017- Present
- Nominating Committee, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
- Chair, Criminal Defense Lawyers Project, TCDLA, 2017 to 2018
- Member, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2012 – present
- Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
- Fellow, Honorable Curt B. Henderson, Inn of Courts
- President, Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, 2009
Honors & Awards
- Percy Foreman Lawyer of the Year, TCDLA, 2015
- Super Lawyer, Texas Monthly, 2013 – Present
- Rising Star, Texas Monthly, 2011, 2012
- 10-rated, AVVO, Legal Ratings 2010 – Present
- Dallas Bar Association’s Award for Best Series of Articles—Criminal Law
- The National Trial Lawyers Top 40 under 40 Lawyers, 2012
- Top Women Lawyers in Texas, Texas Monthly, 2019-Present
- Top Attorney Award, Attorney.com, 2019
- Top Lawyers in North Texas, Frisco Style, 2022
- Three Best Rated.com, selected to the list for top three best criminal defense lawyers in Plano, Texas
- Elite Lawyers, 2019
- Best Lawyers in Dallas, D Magazine, 2022
- National Association of Distinguished Counsel’s Top One Percent, 2021- Present