Counsel, Criminal Justice

Job Type

Full Time


Details: Salary are competitive for a nonprofit legal organization.




1500 K Street NW, Suite 900
United States


The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, one of the nation’s leading civil rights organizations, is seeking a talented, experienced attorney with a demonstrated commitment to racial justice to serve as a Counsel in the Criminal Justice Project. This is a full-time position based in Washington, D.C. Significant travel is required.

The Criminal Justice Project seeks to challenge the criminalization of poverty and end institutional practices that contribute to mass incarceration through impact litigation, amicus curiae practice, public education, programming, and policy advocacy.  The Counsel will have the opportunity to work, in conjunction with the private bar, to investigate and bring challenges against excessive indigent defender caseloads, the unconstitutional jailing of poor defendants who are unable to pay criminal justice debt, and bail practices that make a person’s access to freedom dependent upon their ability to pay.

Applicants must possess excellent legal writing and legal research skills and substantial litigation experience. Ideal candidates will be organized, responsive and able to manage a large and fluid workload, as well as have the ability to work well with colleagues, pro-bono counsel and fellow advocacy organizations.  

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Litigating in federal and/or state courts, including appellate courts, throughout the country
  • Conducting legal research and writing legal memoranda, briefs and articles
  • Reviewing and analyzing proposed criminal justice legislation, regulations, policies, and other related documents in an effective, well-reasoned and timely manner
  • Drafting pleadings and briefs, engaging in discovery and motion practice, and conducting evidentiary hearings and oral arguments
  • Leading investigations, developing new cases, and leading complex litigation
  • Engaging in public speaking, writing op-eds, and articulating Lawyers’ Committee’s positions on various civil rights and criminal justice reform matters
  • Demonstrating a commitment to diversity within and outside the office and demonstrating an ability to implement an advocacy-driven approach to the work


Qualifications and Preferred Experience

·        Deep commitment to the advancement of civil rights and racial justice

·        Graduation from an accredited law school

·        Active membership in a state bar

·        5-7 years of post-JD legal experience

·        Experience working within the criminal justice system as a prosecutor, public defender or as a litigator within an advocacy organization focused on criminal justice reform

·        Excellent legal research and writing skills

·        Ability to produce high quality work under pressure of multiple deadlines

·        Organized and capable of collaborating with multiple partners to  develop complex litigation and manage multiple litigation projects simultaneously

·        Excellent interpersonal and communication skills

·        Substantial leadership skills and ability to collaborate with colleagues and pro bono counsel to develop and implement effective litigation and advocacy strategies

·        Strong intellect and ability to analyze issues and convey written information in a clear, concise, accurate, organized, and convincing manner

·        Motivated with demonstrated initiative to take on additional responsibilities as appropriate

No calls will be accepted. The position will remain open until 9/30/18 and applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

The Lawyers’ Committee does not discriminate on the basis of actual or perceived race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family responsibility, personal appearance, genetic information, matriculation, political affiliation, or any other status protected under law.

We strongly encourage candidates of color and candidates from underrepresented communities to apply. 

Accessibility Assistance: Although calls will not be accepted regarding questions about the position, if you are an individual with a disability and need assistance completing the online application, please call 202-662-8600 and ask for an applicant accommodation or send an email with the subject line “Applicant Accommodation” to


Benefits are competitive for a nonprofit legal organization.

Level of Language Proficiency


Professional Level


Minimum Education Required


How To Apply

To Apply: Please submit a cover letter and resume to