Dean T. Adams

Mr. Adams is a founding member of Adams Silva & McNally LLP. As an education law attorney since his graduation from law school, Mr. Adams has served school districts in the areas of labor and employment, student issues, special education, governance, litigation and business and facilities. Mr. Adams routinely represents school districts in federal court, superior court, administrative hearings, arbitrations, and mediations. Mr. Adams is frequently requested to present workshops and training programs on topics relating to labor and employment, student matters, and special education for school district administrators and staff.  

In addition to his wealth of knowledge in the field of education, Mr. Adams prides himself on his personal approach to clients and partnering with them to address the issues they face. Mr. Adams understands the challenges today’s board members, administrators, and staff encounter and rapidly responds to client inquiries. Like all Adams Silva & McNally LLP attorneys, Mr. Adams tailors his service to meet your needs. 

Mr. Adams regularly presents at numerous seminars and conferences, including the Association of California School Administrators (“ACSA”), the California School Personnel Commissioners Association (“CSPCA”), and the California Association of School Business Officials (“CASBO”). Mr. Adams publishes articles on a variety of matters, including his December 10, 2014 Daily Journal article titled “A Tepid Response to Vergara.”

Prior to becoming a founding partner at Adams Silva & McNally LLP, Mr. Adams was an Office Managing Partner with an education law firm, where he started as an associate and transitioned to a senior associate, partner, senior partner, and an office managing partner. Prior to completing law school, Mr. Adams served as a student advocate with the University of San Diego Mental Health Legal Clinic. He also worked as a law clerk with the California Teachers Association, a union representative with the United Food and Commercial Workers, and a field representative with then-State Senator Jack O’Connell. Mr. Adams has been published in the 2005 issue of the San Diego International Law Journal.

Mr. Adams is an avid surfer and enjoys traveling to remote coastal destinations. He also regularly volunteers with Urban Surf 4 Kids and other nonprofits teaching foster youth and individuals with disabilities how to surf.


  • University of San Diego (Juris Doctor)
  • University of Baltimore (Master of Public Administration)
  • California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo (Bachelor of Arts, Political Science)


  • California State Bar
  • United States District Court, Southern District of California
  • United States District Court, Central District of California


  • California Council of School Attorneys
  • San Diego International Law Journal
  • FBI Citizens Academy