NAPD Executive Director

Posted by

National Association for Public Defense

Published 7 days ago

April 1, 2021
February 19, 2021
$65,000 - $91,000Travel and equipment expense reimbursement with pre-approval.


NAPD was formed in 2013 as an association focused exclusively on public defense, was open to all public defense professionals (lawyers and non-lawyers), would provide meaningful ways for line defenders/advocates to participate in a national movement for public defense reform, and to lead with an authenticity sourced by being the experts on public defense as the day-in, day-out providers of public defense services. NAPD believes that public defenders are stronger together and fosters a community committed to raising the quality and creativity of public defense wherever there is the desire to do better.

Through its education programs NAPD helps advocates improve their trials skills, communication, team-building and focus on specific initiatives. Through its Leadership Institutes, NAPD supports current leaders and cultivates the next generation of public defender leaders. Through listservs, online meet-ups, and strategic staffing, NAPD supports communities of public defense investigators/social workers/mitigation staff/administrator and other professionals to share information and lend case-based support. Through its public defense library MyGideon, thousands of resources are archived for public defenders to access whenever they need them. Through its active committee work, public defenders are engaged to advance reform in the areas that matter most to them and their clients: amicus work, workloads advocacy, education, systems building, reforming the practice of fines/fees/cash bond, ensuring specialized resources for juvenile defense, racial justice, IT improvements, ethics, and communications.

NAPD presently has 22,000 members – including 25 statewide public defense programs and more than 100 county based programs. It also offers membership to hundreds of individually appointed counsel and contracted public defense professionals. NAPD has members in all 50 states and US Territories and includes a joint membership option with the National Association of Federal Defenders. We encourage applicants to read our Foundational Principles here:


The Executive Director is the public face of the organization, and coordinates/implements NAPD’s Strategic Plan, ensures sound governance of the association, is the primary Team Member to facilitate the engagement of the Steering Committee, supervises the other leadership positions (Training Director, Managing/Operations Director, Engagement Director) and holds the ultimate decision-making authorities of the Team. Specific duties include:

•   Provide strategic decision-making consistent with the original vision as it has evolved through strategic planning processes, with adherence to the NAPD Foundational Principles

•   Undertake long-term strategic planning and sustainability planning

•   Oversee the day-to-day financial and administrative operations of NAPD

•   Supervise the Training Director, Managing/Operations Director, and Engagement Director; and meet weekly with the leadership team, coordinate the monthly setting of goals, invoice review, ongoing performance evaluation policies, and conduct annual evaluations of the leadership team

•   Lead the effort to receive revenues from grants (private and public) as well as potentially non-traditional revenue sources

•   Cultivate allies and partners across the country (law firms, law schools, civil rights projects, community groups, and others) to support NAPD’s work and sphere of influence

•   Identify the need for NAPD to take public positions; help draft and review position statements; staff work groups writing position statements; and develop a communications dissemination strategy

•   Procure and review contracts (staff and other)

•   Pursue revenue opportunities through Systems Builders’ technical assistance and recruiting services, and other opportunities as they may arise (workloads assessments, for example)

•   Staff and participate on NAPD committees, as appropriate

•   Maintain continuity of communications with executive leader members, and non-members (including recruitment); actively participate in Leadership Training and Events (development and teaching); engage in the recruitment of new members and retention of existing members

•   Collaborate with other national membership organizations such as the ABA, NACDL, NLADA; represent NAPD at IDAG meetings; and forge/maintain new relationships with other national groups

•   Be the public face of the organization; respond to incoming media/research requests; oversee social media and websites; and promote the NAPD brand

•   Ensure compliance with by-laws; support Committee Chairs/Steering Committee members; manage Steering Committee membership; and develop secondary leadership

•   Foster a cooperative and consistent working relationship between NAPD and the NAPD Fund for Justice


The ideal candidate will bring:

•   Demonstrated leadership success in the fields of criminal justice, public defense, racial equity and/or other social justice issues;

•   Experience working with standard word processing and spreadsheet programs, data management systems, and a basic knowledge of computer usage in a network environment (sophisticated technical competency a plus);

•   Proven experience developing and managing a budget, as well as tending to the financial needs of leading a program/office/organization;

•   Proven experience developing, adhering and adjusting to a long-term strategic plan;

•   Successful experience working with a Board of Directors or other regulatory body;

•   Successful experience supervising staff (experience supervising remote staff a plus);

•   Clear and effective communication skills, both orally and in writing, with experience leading or managing media relations for a program/office/organization as well as creating policies, protocols and other written guidance to support operations;

•   Proven experience procuring grants, delivering grant objectives, and satisfying reporting (prior positive experience with relevant funders a plus);

•   Emotional intelligence and an ability to treat people with patience and kindness combined with energy and enthusiasm;

•   An interest in teaching and a willingness to assist others in achieving their goals combined with an ability to work cooperatively in a remote, virtual setting to support the mission of NAPD;

•   A high level of organizational and administrative skills to handle a variety of detail-rich tasks promptly and competently as an hours-limited contractor without dedicated administrative support.

•   J.D. preferred but not required.


Compensation is hourly, capped between 25-35 hours/week and commensurate with experience (within the pay scale of existing contractors), $65,000 - $91,000 per year. The budget supports travel and equipment expenses with pre-approval and may provide a stipend for health benefits.


NAPD was formed in 2013 as an association focused exclusively on public defense, was open to all public defense professionals (lawyers and non-lawyers), would provide meaningful ways for line defenders/advocates to participate…

Details at a glance

  • Remote Possible
  • Part Time Schedule
  • Contract
  • 4-Year Degree Required
  • Executive


Position may qualify for a stipend for health benefits.

Position may qualify for a stipend for health benefits.

Level of Language Proficiency

English Proficiency

English Proficiency


Denver, CO

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