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Legal Director

Jackson Hole, WY, USA | American Civil Liberties Union

  • Industry:
    Non-Profit / Social Enterprise
  • Position Type:
    Full-Time
  • Functions:
    General Management
    Legal / Compliance
  • Experience:
Job Description:
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The ACLU seeks a full-time position of Legal Director in the ACLU of North Dakota, South Dakota & Wyoming of the ACLU’s National office in South Dakota, North Dakota, or Wyoming.


Reporting to the Executive Director of the Chapter Office, the Legal Director will lead and expand the ACLU legal program across South Dakota, North Dakota, and Wyoming, including developing and litigating high-impact cases and managing the legal department. The Legal Director will be responsible for setting the overall legal strategy to advance the ACLU of SD/ND/WY mission, as well as handling the day-to-day management of legal staff and cooperating attorneys. As a critical member of the office's senior management team, the Legal Director will provide strategic leadership on both litigation and non-litigation legal advocacy in priority areas. Our current campaign priorities include indigenous justice, immigrants’ rights, LGBTQ and two spirit rights, voting rights, and smart justice reform for prison systems.


We are taking our organization to the next level by strengthening our legal firepower, building legislative strength, expanding communications methods, and creating winning issue campaigns. To meet these objectives, the ACLU of South Dakota, North Dakota, and Wyoming has adopted a “campaign” approach for its work. Work is focused on pursuing specific integrated advocacy campaigns to achieve measurable goals that will expand civil liberties and civil rights while building the long-term power of the ACLU and the civil liberties’ movement. 


RESPONSIBILITIES


Maintain and develop our aggressive impact litigation and advocacy docket, which advances the ACLU of SD/ND/WY strategic priorities and responds to civil rights and civil liberties threats

Manage all aspects of the litigation program, including coordinating the selection of cases, overseeing the investigation and development of cases before commencing litigation; building litigation teams with in-house lawyers, private lawyers, and nonprofit partners; directly engaging in litigation in federal and state court; and overseeing ongoing litigation

Maintain an individual caseload of developing and active litigation and amicus briefs, including overseeing and directing pre-litigation investigations, discovery, motion practice, brief writing, hearings and trials, and appellate work, and work with staff attorneys and cooperating attorneys on all work within the ACLU SD/ND/WY legal program

Supervise a staff attorney and occasionally law student and undergraduate interns; handle recruiting and hiring of additional legal staff (budget permitting); and foster an organizational culture within the legal program that encourages staff development through internal and external resources

Broaden and deepen relationships with volunteer attorneys and other lawyers in the community to ensure the visibility of the ACLU SD/ND/WY in the legal community (and beyond) and to help build our legal docket, including by engaging lawyers in pre-litigation investigations, amicus briefs, litigation, and other ACLU SD/ND/WY activities

Coordinate and collaborate with other ACLU SD/ND/WY departments on cross-departmental projects and serve as a resource on legal matters for staff, partners, and other ACLU of SD/ND/WY constituents

Serve as a highly visible spokesperson for the ACLU, working closely with our outreach and communications team to regularly engage in strategic public forums, advocacy discussions, and media opportunities

Provide systemic and strategic planning and reporting, including developing budgets, providing regular reports on legal department activities, and supporting reporting on grants with legal department deliverables


MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS


Trial and appellate litigation experience in state and federal courts, including class actions, with a strong interest and experience in constitutional law and civil rights

Admitted to the South Dakota, North Dakota, or Wyoming Bar or eligible for admission on motion

Excellent organizational skills and a creative and strategic approach to problem-solving and litigation

Creative, persuasive, results-oriented, self-starting, persevering, and willing to learn

High ethical standards and genuine interest in developing authentic relationships

Team player who inspires collaboration, lifts up the work of others, and maintains balance and perspective with patience and a sense of humor

Commitment to the mission of the ACLU

Demonstrate a commitment to diversity within the office using a personal approach that values all individuals and respects differences in regards to race, ethnicity, age, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, disability and socio-economic circumstance

Commitment to work collaboratively and respectfully toward resolving obstacles and/or conflicts


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