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Associate Counsel to National Initiatives

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Center for Community Progress


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Published 20 days ago

May 1, 2021
March 19, 2021
$85,000 - $100,000

Job Title: Associate Counsel to National Initiatives

Reports To: Director of National Technical Assistance and General Counsel

Date Posted: February 8, 2021


Center for Community Progress

As a national nonprofit, our mission is to foster strong, equitable communities where vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated properties are transformed into assets for neighbors and neighborhoods. We are former practitioners and policymakers who understand that today’s neighborhoods have been shaped by decades of unjust and racist housing, land use, and lending policies – and we are driven by the promise of safe, healthy housing in inclusive neighborhoods that serve and provide opportunity and dignity for all.

The expertise and passion of our staff is unmatched, and Community Progress is highly regarded as the nation’s leading resource for communities that seek more equitable, effective, and efficient solutions to address vacancy and abandonment. In all our work, we seek to ensure that all communities have the policies, tools, and resources they need to effectively and efficiently acquire and activate vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated properties in support of equitable development, inclusive neighborhoods, and resilient communities.

Our state-of-the-art technical assistance has been provided to more than 300 communities in over 35 states. We have also helped incubate, grow, and evolve the national land bank movement, with many land banks now playing a more active role in addressing the housing affordability crisis, tackling racial inequities, and supporting disaster recovery efforts.

More information is available at www.communityprogress.net, and a catalogue of written deliverables produced by the National Technical Assistance team can be found at https://tinyurl.com/CCPNTAPublications


Job Summary

The Center for Community Progress is seeking an experienced, innovative, and perceptive candidate to serve as Associate Counsel to National Initiatives, joining a small team of passionate thought leaders and technical experts who care deeply about racial equity and justice.

The Associate Counsel to National Initiatives will serve as a core member of the National Technical Assistance (NTA) team, providing specialized legal and policy expertise to communities across the country struggling with vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated property challenges. Recognizing the barriers these properties create to fostering equitable communities, this individual will work alongside some of the nation’s top experts on topics such as delinquent property tax enforcement, housing and building code enforcement, land banking, and alternative land use.

This position will contribute to and at times lead the NTA team’s engagement and relationship-building with a broad range of local governments, state agencies, nonprofits, and resident leaders across the country. The Associate Counsel to National Initiatives must have demonstrated capacity in legal research and writing, as well as the ability to translate complex legal concepts in both written and oral form for non-legal and legal audiences alike.

The ideal candidate for the position will have (1) experience drafting, or advising the development of, local or state legislation, (2) a natural comfort working with diverse audiences, and (3) a shared passion and deep commitment to building equitable, inclusive communities that provide opportunities for all. While this position will be expected to perform independently at a high level, this position will also have the benefit of seeking legal guidance and support from the organization’s General Counsel and Senior Advisors.

The Associate Counsel to National Initiatives position is full-time. While Community Progress staff and Senior Advisors work from locations across the country, in offices and remotely, the organization has hubs in Washington D.C., Michigan, and Georgia. If possible, our preference is to have this position operate from one of these hubs.

Individuals who are self-starters, able to lead projects, and pride themselves on solving complex problems alongside both legal and non-legal partners in pursuit of building equitable and just communities are encouraged to apply.


Duties & Essential Job Functions

-         Cultivate, support and/or lead technical assistance engagements with local partners, such as governments or land banks, which will include developing scopes of work and budgets, managing a small project team, providing legal analysis and support, ensuring timely completion of high-quality deliverables, and presenting results to a broad range of state and local partners;

-         As part of the technical assistance engagements or in support of other program areas within the organization, such as National Leadership and Education or Research and Policy, carry out the analyses of local and state laws, and prepare memoranda summarizing key provisions of the legal systems that impact vacancy and abandonment, including but not limited to property tax foreclosure systems, code enforcement systems and rental regulations, land banking and public acquisition tools, and vacant and abandoned property ordinances;

-         Help local and/or statewide partners identify and understand the need for potential legislative or policy reform, recommend appropriate reforms, and assist in the drafting of local ordinances, policies, and/or state statutes related to vacancy, abandonment, and deterioration;

-         Develop and manage special project designed to challenge and improve the ways in which Community Progress and the field address the negative impacts of vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated properties, with a strong focus on racial and economic justice;

-         Stay current on legislation, policies, and case law affecting vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated properties throughout the country;

-         Develop and present training or author brief articles, like blog posts, on legal and policy tools to support equitable communities for legal and non-legal audiences, including a broad range of stakeholder groups throughout the country;

-         Be willing to travel up to 20% of the time, as conditions allow;

-         Provide support primarily to the National Technical Assistance team and collaborate with other program areas as needed; and

-         Other duties as assigned by the Director of National Technical Assistance and General Counsel.


Reporting Relationships

This position does not have any full-time staff directly reporting to them.


Qualifications

-         Have a demonstrated commitment to public and community service with an enthusiasm for Community Progress’s mission and a shared commitment to equity, inclusion, and justice;

-         Knowledge of and prior work experience related to the challenges facing urban, suburban, and rural communities as they relate to vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated properties;

-         Awareness of the history of unjust policies that have contributed to disinvested communities and racial inequities, and a commitment to working collaboratively with leaders in the field to develop new policies and programs that prioritize racial and economic justice;

-         Contagious leadership style that contributes to the collaborative approach embraced by the National Technical Assistance team;

-         Ability to lead technical assistance engagements and special projects, work independently, and be an organized and effective manager of own and others’ work;

-         Strategic and collaborative thinking with ability to identify, prioritize, and leverage opportunities for engagements and partnership with the National Technical Assistance team and Community Progress;

-         Excellent legal research and writing skills; experience in legislative drafting and analysis a plus;

-         Strong relationship-building skills, commitment to nonpartisanship, and a demonstrated ability to collaborate with individuals, groups, and policymakers with opposing points of view and diverse political perspectives;

-         Strong problem-solving skills and ability to think outside the box;

-         Ability to multitask and manage stress well in a fast-paced environment with frequently shifting priorities; and

-         Sharp attention to detail as well as appreciation for the big picture.


Required

J.D. and minimum of 5 years of experience in real estate law, state and local government law/policy, or other closely related experience. Applicants must be a member in good standing of a State Bar.


Preferred

A minimum of 7 years of experience working on law or policy related to systems that impact vacancy and abandonment, including but not limited to, municipal finance, delinquent property tax enforcement, housing and building code enforcement, public land acquisition and disposition, rental regulation, civil rights, and fair housing,


Salary and Benefits

The Center for Community Progress is offering a salary for the position of Associate Counsel to National Initiatives between $85,000 and $100,000 annually, commensurate with experience. Additionally, the Center for Community Progress provides an excellent and comprehensive benefits package that includes medical, dental, vision, 401k match, access to flexible spending accounts, and generous personal time off benefits.


Application Instructions

Interested applicants should submit cover letter, resume, and two (2) writing examples that demonstrate strong legal analysis, one of which is designed for a legal audience and the other for a non-legal audience. All materials should be sent in a single PDF by 3:00pm ET on Friday, March 19, 2021 to Michael Bochnovic, Special Assistant to the President and CEO, at mbochnovic@communityprogress.net


Equal Opportunity Employment

The Center for Community Progress work with community partners to advance and strengthen the values of equity, justice, and inclusion, and is committed to maintaining a diverse and multicultural working environment. As such, we are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, skin color, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, marital status, military status, pregnancy, or parenthood. 

Job Title: Associate Counsel to National Initiatives

Reports To: Director of National Technical Assistance and General Counsel

Date Posted: February 8, 2021


Center for Community Progress

As a national nonprofit, our mission is to foster…

Details at a glance

  • Full Time Schedule
  • J.D. Required

Benefits

The Center for Community Progress provides an excellent and comprehensive benefits package that includes medical, dental, vision, 401k match, access to flexible spending accounts, and generous personal time off benefits. 

The Center for Community Progress provides an excellent and comprehensive benefits package that includes medical, dental, vision, 401k match, access to flexible spending…

Location

Remote
Work may be performed anywhere in United States

How to Apply

All materials should be sent in a single PDF by 3:00pm ET on Friday, March 21, 2021 to Michael Bochnovic, Special Assistant to the President and CEO, at mbochnovic@communityprogress.net

All materials should be sent in a single PDF by 3:00pm ET on Friday, March 21, 2021 to Michael Bochnovic, Special Assistant to the President and CEO, at mbochnovic@communityprogress.net

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