Directing Attorney - Economic Justice Project

01/26/2016 1:37 PM | Anonymous

Directing Attorney
Economic Justice Project
Olympia or Seattle, WA

Program Description
For many years, Columbia Legal Services has represented some of the most marginalized people in our community. We use every legal tool available on their behalf. Our role to serve people and use advocacy that might otherwise not be available makes our work an integral part of the Washington Alliance for Equal Justice. Our vision of justice is when people have the necessary tools and opportunity to achieve social and economic justice, a more equitable and inclusive society is possible. Through large-scale litigation, policy reform, and innovative partnerships, our lawyers and staff work in furtherance of our mission. The ideal candidate for any position at Columbia Legal Services will be able to articulate their role in the achievement of that vision.

Columbia Legal Services seeks a full-time Directing Attorney to supervise the advocacy of our six-person Economic Justice Project. The Directing Attorney will:
• Direct the activities of the project group, including assigning, supervising, managing, and defining the scope of work on complex litigation, class actions, legislative advocacy, and other policy work. The Directing Attorney maintains their own caseload, as well.
• Serve as an effective liaison across project groups and throughout statewide and national networks to identify opportunities and execute strategies to advance fairness and to stop exploitative practices against low-income people, particularly on issues affecting consumers, homeowners and tenants.
• Actively advance the professional development of team members, and provide mentorship, support and resources to enable the team to perform at the highest level. 
• Work with organizational leadership to oversee and advance large-scale, strategic organization-wide initiatives.
• Be available to travel occasionally around the state to attend meetings, advance policy, and supervise staff members. This position may be based in Olympia or Seattle. 

• Minimum of five years of complex litigation and multi-forum advocacy; two years in a supervisory role.
• Experience with broad economic justice issues, such as consumer protection, predatory lending, debt collection, foreclosure, or related areas of law.
• Demonstrated initiative and creativity, commitment to social and economic justice, and the ability to master new legal areas and operate at a high advocacy level.
• Excellent communication, research, writing, negotiation, and analytical skills.
• Ability to lead a team advancing a variety of work and projects simultaneously.
• Cultural competence and experience working with or on behalf of low-income client communities.
• Member of Washington State Bar or prepared to seek admission as soon as possible upon hiring. 
• Spanish language skills a plus.

This job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee.

CLS offers a competitive compensation package with a salary scale commensurate with experience, and generous holiday, paid time off, and health care benefits.
Position is open until filled. Please note that due to the volume of applications received, CLS is unable to respond to every application. CLS will contact you if we decide to pursue your application. If e-mailed, please make Economic Justice Directing Attorney your subject line. Please send your letter of interest, resume, three professional references, and writing sample to:
Trisa Kern, Director of Program Administration
Columbia Legal Services
 101 Yesler Way Suite 300
Seattle, Washington, 98104

Program Policy
Columbia Legal Services is committed to a policy of pluralism and equal opportunity in an environment free of barriers and discriminatory practices for its client communities, Board and staff.  Pluralism refers to the active promotion of mutual respect, acceptance, teamwork and productivity among people who are diverse in work background, experience, education, race, color, national origin, sex, age, religious preference, marital status, sexual orientation, sensory, mental and physical abilities, veteran status, or any other perceived differences.  The resulting diversity is both a source of program strength and a matter of fundamental human fairness. If you need a reasonable accommodation for the application process, contact Sharon Nyland at 206-464-1122 or

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