Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) is a global leader in the protection of unaccompanied refugee and migrant children. Launched in 2008, KIND champions a world in which every child’s rights and well-being are protected throughout their journey to safety. Since 2008, KIND has accepted over 23,000 referrals of children seeking legal representation in their immigration proceedings. KIND has welcomed more than 41,000 attendees to trainings since its founding, cultivating partnerships with over 670 law firms, corporate legal departments, law schools, and bar associations across the country.
KIND’s social services program ensures that migrant and refugee children – who have often endured trauma – receive counseling, educational support, medical care and other comprehensive services.
To address the root causes of child migration from Central America and strengthen protection of unaccompanied children, KIND advocates for policy changes and educates lawmakers, the media, and the broader public on the conditions that drive these children to flee their home countries. KIND supports children returning to their home countries by connecting them to essential support services and sponsors gender-based violence prevention programs in Central America to protect children in countries of origin and transit.
KIND is also building upon its expertise in the protection of unaccompanied children to encourage the development of pro bono initiatives across Europe in partnership with European NGOs.
KIND seeks a Managing Attorney to provide seasoned, disciplined, and effective management of the KIND field office, including performing independently in the areas of program and performance management, budgeting, employee relations, and development-support functions.
As the head of KIND’s local office in Seattle, WA, the Managing Attorney is a critical member of the management team in KIND’s Legal Services division and is the senior representative of the organization at the local level – effectively engaging government, private sector partners, and community stakeholders to advance KIND’s mission. Managing Attorneys supervise Senior Attorneys and Supervising Attorneys, as well as other attorney and non-attorney staff as needed.
- Provide mentoring to KIND pro bono attorneys and as needed, limited direct legal representation to KIND clients. In the pro bono mentoring function, provide robust consultation and technical assistance to pro bono attorneys who have accepted a KIND case. In the direct representation function, perform ordinary functions of legal counsel including legal research and formulating the legal strategy for the case; conducting client interviews; appearing before immigration and/or state court or agencies; and drafting and filing court pleadings and applications for benefits.
- Mentoring and/or direct representation responsibilities will be determined based on programmatic and institutional priorities in consultation with Legal Programs leadership.
- Serve as a member of KIND's Legal Programs management team, responsible for the overall management of field office including program quality and deliverables, staff performance, team cohesion and functioning, and integration with the Legal Programs department and organization at large.
- Monitor and present on changes in immigration law to multiple audiences, including legal services and pro bono partners, and other high level internal and external stakeholders. Consult with and contribute thought leadership and information on local trends to support the work of KIND’s Training and Technical Assistance team and other internal stakeholders.
- Develop and implement effective management strategies to meet ambitious programmatic and funding deliverables and mission-critical priorities, including staff recruitment and development-support functions, employee engagement, and quality control of KIND’s legal services delivery.
- Oversee the provision of top-notch mentoring program and direct representation services to clients in the released and detained context as relevant.
- Ensure data integrity and utilize case management databases and other technological tools to assist in creating more efficient processes and identifying training, recruitment, client needs/opportunities, and trends, in collaboration with KIND’s Data Strategy Team.
- Promote volunteer support by actively developing and maintaining KIND’s relationships with law firms and corporate counsel with a robust presence in the respective city and/or region, in coordination with KIND's Senior Director for Pro Bono Partnerships.
- Serve as the field office primary liaison with KIND’s headquarters (including Legal Programs leadership, and Policy, Advocacy, Communications, Development, Human Resources, and Operations departments), working under the supervision of KIND’s Regional Director.
- Maintain internal and external stakeholder relations; serve as KIND leader in local coalitions of various stakeholders supporting unaccompanied immigrant children.
- Work with Legal Programs leadership, Development, and Finance to ensure compliance with all grant and funding requirements.
- Manage team or field office budget and, with assistance from other team members, track expenditures and identify budgeting priorities.
- Assist with special projects of local and national scope at the direction of KIND leadership.
- Participate in local coalitions of various stakeholders supporting unaccompanied immigrant children.
- Collaborate on social services programming for clients and pro bono attorneys in conjunction with the Social Services Team, including local field office Social Services Coordinator(s).
- As a member of the management team in the Legal Programs department, the Managing Attorney is expected to uphold the following leadership characteristics: Meaningfully contribute thought leadership and expertise to advance KIND’s mission and the strategic goals and objectives of the Legal Programs Team.
- Offer new insights into challenges and opportunities; evaluate conventional approaches and provide and encourage new ideas and innovations; and explore and implement new or cutting-edge programs/processes in collaboration with leadership.
- Partner with organizational leadership on conflict resolution.
- Deal effectively with pressure and remain optimistic and persistent, even in an uncertain and challenging environment.
- Together with other members of the management team, embrace leadership values and a work ethic that exemplifies authenticity, goodwill, transparency, and collaboration.
- Inspire and foster team commitment, spirit, trust, and employee wellness.
- Facilitate cooperation and motivate team members to accomplish group goals.
Qualifications and Requirements:
- J.D. and admitted to any U.S. state bar.
- 7-10 years of experience practicing immigration law, which should include representation of clients in humanitarian immigration claims such as asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, U visas, and T visas.
- 5+ years of experience working with children, preferably immigrant and refugee children, and/or working with survivors of abuse, human trafficking, or other trauma.
- 2+ years of experience working with law firm attorneys and/or other legal volunteers.
- 4+ years of experience supervising attorneys and non-attorney staff.
- 3+ years of experience in program management, including experience such as project management, tracking deliverables, hiring, planning and development.
- Experience working in a national or larger management structure, preferred.
- Strong record of cultural competence and cross-cultural communication skills.
- Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively and persuasively both orally and in writing.
- Demonstrated effective and authentically engaged leadership; ability to critically assess challenges and propose and execute solutions, with appropriate consultation and visibility to leadership; excellent professional judgment.
- A deep understanding of and ability to work and lead effectively with internal and external stakeholders and participate in local coalition work.
- Demonstrated high-level writing and public speaking/training skills.
- Ability to work collaboratively and to handle multiple demands in a busy work environment.
- Proficiency in case management or data management systems.
- Ability to work within an office environment, have regular interaction via telephone, Teams and email with KIND’s national team and have regular interaction including meetings and events with pro bono partners.