SBJ photo by McKenzie Robinson

2020 Most Influential Women: Christa Moss

U.S. Attorney's Office

Posted online

Christa Moss knows that a true leader is a servant first. That was instilled in her at a young age by her parents, and has remained a guiding principle in her life.

“Whether through coaching, mentoring, teaching, board service, involvement in my church or civic roles, I have not allowed my career goals to prevent me from finding time to serve in areas where I am passionate about seeing change or giving back,” she says. “In fact, the more I engage in things bigger than myself, the more I learn how to excel in my career as an attorney.”

One of her proudest accomplishments came via volunteer work through The Missouri Bar. In 2018, she was elected to the Young Lawyers’ Section Council and became the chair of the council’s diversity committee. During her tenure, the Missouri Supreme Court required a continuing legal education requirement for attorneys on implicit bias, cultural competency, diversity and inclusion.

Moss says she created a program to fulfill the education requirement in collaboration with local bar associations and universities in Springfield and St. Louis. Over 300 people attended the presentation, which included a panel discussion among state judges, historians and professors, and featured “The Milly Project.” The play documents the story of Milly Sawyers, a slave who was beaten in the street after winning her freedom in a Greene County Court.

Moss has since expanded opportunities on the Young Lawyers’ Section Council by drafting bylaw changes to add two diversity seats. And last year she was asked by The Missouri Bar’s board to serve as the southern appellate district seat, which, in part helps set policy for lawyers across the state. Closer to home, she serves as the luncheon chair for the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association.

Moss earned her Juris Doctor from William & Mary Law School in 2012. She worked at law firms in Washington, Virginia and Oklahoma and as an assistant city attorney in Kansas City before moving to Springfield in 2017. She worked as a federal law clerk for the Western District of Missouri until June, when she became a civil assistant U.S. attorney.

She says her current position is one of the most prestigious careers in the practice of law.

Other proud moments of her career include winning an appeal before the Missouri State Court of Appeals just two years out of law school, and helping to pioneer a new process for dealing with vacant and abandoned properties in Kansas City.

Across her professional and civic efforts, Moss says she is intentional about investing in relationships. She supports fellow moms as a curator for the Mom Who Works community, and encourages kids as a mentor through Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield and as a volleyball coach at various schools. She also serves on the board of the Foundation for Springfield Public Schools and on the Young Advocates council for Child Advocacy Center.

“Though at times it feels as if one small relationship will never be enough to effect sweeping change in the lives of the next generation, if we all engaged in one small relationship, we could greatly impact our youth,” she says.