ABOUT PUBLIC COUNSEL
Public Counsel is the nation’s largest provider of pro bono legal services. Founded in 1970, it is dedicated to advancing equal justice under law and addressing economic, racial, social, and other inequities by delivering free legal and social services to the most vulnerable members of our community. Public Counsel operates eight legal projects: Children’s Rights, Community Development, Consumer Rights & Economic Justice, Homelessness Prevention, Immigrants’ Rights, Veterans’ Rights, the Audrey Irmas Project for Women & Girls’ Rights, and our impact litigation project, Opportunity Under Law.
Public Counsel has a full-time staff of over 130. We are committed to building a diverse staff and encourage applications from people of color, people with disabilities, and people of all gender identities, gender expressions, and sexualities.
ABOUT THE AUDREY IRMAS PROJECT FOR WOMEN & GIRLS’ RIGHTS
The Audrey Irmas Project for Women & Girls’ Rights (WGR) is one of Public Counsel’s eight legal projects focused on advancing equity for women, girls, and gender non-conforming individuals. Founded in 2017, the project engages in direct legal services, impact litigation, and policy work at the intersection of race, poverty and gender. WGR has primarily focused on advocating on behalf of low-wage workers and students who face gender-based discrimination and violence at work and educational institutions.
Reporting to the Vice President & Chief of Programs, the Directing Attorney of the Women & Girls’ Rights Project will have deep expertise in, and commitment to, advocating for the rights of women and girls, particularly in the areas of employment and education. Pervasive sexual harassment, discrimination, wage theft, violence, and other barriers continue to unfairly burden women, especially lower-wage workers, women of color, transgender women, and students. WGR’s new leader will have experience with these challenges and be able to lead a small team in fiercely representing clients through a trauma-informed lens and advocacy model. Setting new short and long-term goals to meet shifting client needs, the Directing Attorney will drive a focused systems-change litigation and advocacy agenda, support our talented team of gender equity advocates, and cultivate funding sources to support and expand our ability to eradicate systems of gender, race, and class-based oppression.
The Directing Attorney must support Public Counsel’s values of equity and inclusion and client- and community-centered advocacy. A passionate and effective leader, the next Directing Attorney will expand the impact of Public Counsel’s Women & Girls’ Rights Project across Los Angeles County and beyond.
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Strategy and Organizational Leadership
- Leads WGR’s efforts to bring about systemic and meaningful change on behalf of our clients, including by identifying opportunities to bring cases likely to have an extensive impact and engaging in advocacy at the local, state and national levels;
- Provides vision and support to WGR’s staff to deliver high quality direct legal services, including direct representation, impact litigation, and policy advocacy;
- Collaborates with Public Counsel’s Director of Litigation and Director of Policy & Coalition Building to identify opportunities for systems-change work;
- Engages with external partners, community stakeholders, and the media to pursue strategic goals in partnership with management, WGR staff, and Public Counsel’s communications team;
- Supports WGR staff by overseeing recruitment and hiring, and providing mentorship, training, growth opportunities, and effective trauma-informed supervision that values staff well-being, including sustainable workloads;
- Collaborates with management to inform, enhance, and execute agency-wide policies and initiatives;
- Collaborates with Public Counsel’s Direct of Social Work, management, and WGR staff to further diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as the provision of trauma-informed services, within the organization.
Community Relations & Programming
- Collaborates with community partners, including grassroots organizations, legal service providers, social service agencies, and governmental agencies, to protect and advance the rights of women and girls in California;
- Leads collaborative processes with management and the WGR team both to support and, if necessary, modify existing programs and to design new programs in response to needs of clients;
- Recruits pro bono attorneys to engage in impact litigation and direct legal services, and advises pro bono attorneys in WGR’s substantive areas of law;
- Collaborates with Public Counsel’s Director of Social Work to identify needs and social work resources for clients.
- Identifies opportunities for and supports the WGR team’s community education events.
Financial Management and Fund Development
- Works with WGR staff, development staff, and leadership to maintain existing grant funding and seek new sources of funding to support and, where appropriate, expand WGR’s objectives and impact;
- Manages grant compliance, including applications, program design, tracking, and reporting;
- Oversees WGR budget development and manages the WGR budget.
- At least 10 years of legal experience preferred;
- Must be a member in good standing of the State Bar of California;
- Significant management and mentorship experience in the non-profit and legal services sector preferred;
- Significant leadership experience and vision for – as well as demonstrated commitment to – work at the intersection of gender, racial, and economic justice, including by working in coalition with partners and community stakeholders to build community, advance equity, and change narratives;
- Litigation experience required, preferably in the field of labor, employment, and workers’ rights;
- Demonstrated commitment to anti-oppression, racial justice, and advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and in the communities Public Counsel serves;
- Demonstrated commitment to trauma-informed legal advocacy;
- Demonstrated commitment to working well as a member of a multidisciplinary team that includes administrative staff, social workers, and attorneys, preferred;
- Experienced and effective communicator who works cooperatively across teams, levels, and functions within the organization;
- Excellent written and oral communication skills, including experience communicating with the press;
- Excellent interpersonal, management, and organizational skills;
- Collaborative, transparent, and compassionate management style;
- Ability to read, write, and speak fluently in a language other than English is a plus, but not required.
JOB TYPE AND BENEFITS
- Job Type: Full-Time and Exempt
- Salary Range/Hourly Rate: $125,000-$155,000
- Public Counsel offers a competitive benefits package including:
- Medical, dental, and vision coverage with both HMO and PPO options,
- The option to enroll in a Flexible Spending Account,
- A 403(b) retirement plan with elective contribution and a discretionary employer contribution after a year of employment, and
- Employer-paid life insurance and disability plans.
- Generous paid time off and compensatory time up to 40 hours per calendar year
- Parking and transit benefits
HOW TO APPLY
We value lived experiences and experiences working with clients across a range of settings. Please consider discussing such experiences in your cover letter, especially if they are not reflected in your resume.
Resume, cover letter, three references (including one person you have supervised), and writing sample (no longer than 25 pages) requested.
The writing sample should be uploaded along with your resume as one attachment.
PUBLIC COUNSEL VACCINATION POLICY AND COVID-19 PROTOCOLS
Public Counsel requires vaccination and up-to-date boosters against COVID-19 for all employees, including new hires. Pursuant to federal and state laws, Public Counsel will provide reasonable accommodations to qualified employees with disabilities or sincerely held religious beliefs, unless doing so would pose an undue hardship.
Public Counsel is generally office-based, but remote work has been permitted during the pandemic. All employees with Public Counsel are required to work in the office at least one day per week, at the discretion of the head of department. This policy is subject to redesign by leadership. Public Counsel will work in a manner consistent with public health and local and state emergency orders.
PUBLIC COUNSEL EEO POLICY
Public Counsel is an Equal Opportunity Employer that does not discriminate against employees or prospective employees on the basis of union membership or activity, race, religious creed, religious observance, ethnicity, color, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information or predisposition, military service, military and veteran status, pregnancy, child birth and related medical conditions, marital and family status, national origin, ancestry, age, medical conditions as defined by state or federal law, or disability, or any other basis prohibited by law.
All qualified applicants with criminal histories will be considered in a manner consistent with the requirements of the Los Angeles Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring.
Our leadership team is dedicated to this policy with respect to recruitment, hiring, placement, promotion, transfer, training, compensation, benefits, employee activities discipline, discharge and general treatment during employment.