Assistant Director of Legal Advocacy

The Assistant Director of Legal Advocacy will be responsible for leading Advancing Justice | AAJC’s amicus practice.

The Position

The Assistant Director of Legal Advocacy will be responsible for leading Advancing Justice | AAJC’s amicus practice, including tracking impact litigation and working in alliance with other local and national partners to submit amicus briefs in appropriate cases in support of the policy priorities of the organization. Key areas of recent activity have included immigration, voting rights, language access, and affirmative action. The Assistant Director of Legal Advocacy will also work with senior staff and the executive team to strategically develop its litigation capacity. The Assistant Director of Legal Advocacy will also work with counterparts in the Advancing Justice affiliation to ensure alignment with our litigation strategies and to maximize the effectiveness of our collective endeavors.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

The ideal candidate will have a demonstrated interest in civil rights and human rights at the national and local level. The candidate must have the ability to analyze and make recommendations on immigration, voting rights, and other legal issues affecting Asian American communities. The Assistant Director for Legal Advocacy will work closely with a diverse range of constituents, including legal and policy staff at the Advancing Justice | AAJC affiliates, pro bono counsel, and other local and national groups. The candidate must have excellent writing and communication skills to bring diverse coalitions together and to ensure alignment with litigation and policy strategies across many interested parties.

Litigation

  • Monitor and track Supreme Court and other impact litigation on emerging cases that affect Asian American communities to identify opportunities for legal advocacy in support of Advancing Justice-AAJC’s policy priorities.
  • Work with local and national partners to develop amicus brief opportunities and strategies; analyze amicus sign-on opportunities and make recommendations for joining briefs.
  • Develop and foster relationships with pro bono firms and counsel.
  • Coordinate with pro bono counsel in drafting amicus briefs, including providing research and writing support where necessary.
  • Draft summaries, memos, and talking points to alert partners about Advancing Justice-AAJC amicus brief opportunities and handle outreach to signatory groups.
  • Develop ways to contribute to and strategically support impact litigation in non-amicus capacity.
  • Develop and maintain extensive advocacy and coalition relationships with the Asian American and the Washington, D.C. legal and non-legal civil rights communities.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Organizational Leadership and Strategic Planning

  • Act as thought partner to senior staff and Vice President, Policy and Programs in strategic development of Advancing Justice | AAJC’s amicus practice and litigation capacity.
  • Work closely with the executive team and organization staff in setting budgets, program goals and strategies, advancing new ideas and innovation that align with our organizational mission and strategic plan.
  • Work closely with the executive team, to share responsibility to spearhead cross-affiliate initiatives amongst our internal divisions.
  • Work closely with Advancing Justice | AAJC’s communications team to draft press releases, op-eds, and blog posts and respond to media inquiries about pending Supreme Court and circuit cases.

Fundraising

  • Contribute to the development and implementation of a development-supported growth strategy for legal advocacy, including the identification of donor prospects through work with peer organizations and other professional contacts, and the development of potential programmatic elements that may be of particular interest to donors/prospects;
  • Work with the finance and development teams to craft project budgets and contribute to the development of grant proposals relating to litigation;
  • Provide content/information for donor communications and materials (donor newsletters, action alerts, special reports from the executive director, social media postings, etc.); and
  • Attend meetings with prospects/donors as necessary and appropriate.

General Advancing | AAJC Roles

  • Live and exhibit the Core Values of Advancing Justice | AAJC, by contributing to an environment that promotes trust, teamwork and transparency among staff, Board, NAC, affiliates and community partners.
  • Contribute to, establish and follow policies and procedures, including maintenance of confidentiality, to ensure that the principles of Advancing Justice | AAJC are implemented.
  • Participate fully in, and lead decision-making processes; understand outcomes and be accountable for decisions made in, or affecting his/her area.
  • Understand the values and principles of Advancing Justice | AAJC and apply them fully in work responsibilities.
  • Participate in other activities, agency advocacy and serve on ad hoc committees as requested.
  • Attend and contribute to Advancing Justice | AAJC and board of directors meetings.
  • Willing to travel and work occasional evenings and weekends.

Qualifications

Education and Experience:

  • J.D. degree from accredited law school and member in good standing with a state bar association.
  • Five years of legal experience; amicus practice and/or civil rights litigation experience preferred.

Skills, Knowledge and Abilities

  • Excellent research, writing, and communication skills; the ability to investigate and analyze complex legal and factual issues; and familiarity with policy-based legal arguments.
  • Experience and knowledge in Asian American, immigration, and civil rights issues.
  • Prior experience with amicus practice, particularly drafting of briefs, and/or civil rights litigation is strongly preferred.
  • Must be able to work independently and successfully complete multiple overlapping projects without day-to-day supervision.
  • Ability to work with and anticipate the priorities and goals of diverse groups, including grassroots organizations, national civil rights groups, Asian American groups, pro bono counsel, and corporate partners.
  • Familiarity with litigation in both federal and state court; must be comfortable and familiar with basics of Supreme Court and circuit court practice.
  • Supervisory experience and ability to manage and mentor interns, fellows, and junior attorneys is preferred.
  • Must have the ability to plan, organize, and help to oversee a comprehensive program.

How to Apply

Send resume with references, short writing sample and a cover letter to Hiring Manager at hiring@advancingejustice-aajc.org or by mail.

Advancing Justice | AAJC is an equal opportunity employer.