If/When/How is launching a Legal Defense Fund to provide financial resources to bolster strong defenses and mitigate the costs borne by individuals who are criminalized for self-managed abortion. The Fund will offer assistance to people who are arrested, detained, and/or charged for ending their own pregnancy or for helping another person do so. The Legal Defense Fund Director (“LDF Director”) will design, launch, and lead the Legal Defense Fund (“the Fund”) in its first year and grow and sustain it in subsequent years. The LDF Director will provide programmatic, legal, and day-to-day leadership and oversight to the Fund, in both an internal and external capacity, and in collaboration with If/When/How’s Movement Building, Legal & Policy, Communications, Development, and Operations teams. The LDF Director will build and lead a small, skilled team and work with consultants and outside legal counsel as needed.
Given the role and responsibilities expected from the LDF Director, If/When/How seeks a seasoned professional with significant experience developing, managing, growing, and sustaining legal programs or projects (legal defense funds especially); experience managing nonprofit entities and staff; and knowledge of/experience working in the U.S. criminal defense system. The ideal candidate will bring a demonstrated commitment to social justice lawyering and have familiarity with reproductive health, rights, and justice frameworks. Only candidates residing in the United States will be considered for this position.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
Fund Design, Launch, and Management
● Launch and grow the Legal Defense Fund into a nationally-known, legal resource with the capacity to provide financial support for high quality criminal defense to people criminalized for self-managed abortion.
● Ensure that the Fund and its staff provide confidential, secure, and compassionate assistance to those seeking support from the Fund.
● Lead the overall design and implementation of Fund activities, including:
o Intake process for requests for support; documentation, tracking, and reporting processes for all Fund activity.
o Protocols, criteria, and guidelines for resource distribution decision-making.
o Assessment of legal and liability issues to ensure compliance with applicable regulations and ethical obligations.
o Written summaries and analyses of Fund activities, as needed.
● Collaborate with If/When/How’s Legal & Policy and Movement Building teams on the development of referral systems via the RJ Lawyers Network and Repro Legal Helpline.
● Help produce the Fund’s public-facing materials, including its website/web pages, and ensure they are visible, accessible, understandable, and provide impeccably accurate information about the Fund and its resources.
● Ensure the Fund is in compliance with legal and tax regulations and with professional ethics and responsibilities.
● Work closely with If/When/How’s Chief Operating Officer on operational oversight and management, including internal policies and systems, financial tracking, and reports for the needs of the Fund.
● Hire, train, and manage a small team and oversee their ongoing training and professional development.
Community Relations & Fund Sustainability
● Collaborate with If/When/How’s Executive Director to be the external and public spokesperson about the Fund and its launch with stakeholders, partners, and donors.
● Partner with If/When/How’s Communications team to manage press, publicity, and crisis communications around Fund activities.
● Conduct outreach and networking with prospective partners, stakeholders, donors, and beneficiaries of the Fund. Help disseminate information about the Fund’s activities by attending conferences and other engagements.
● Work with If/When/How’s Development team to support fundraising and grant reporting.
● Stay informed about relevant trends in U.S. criminal justice, the nonprofit sector, philanthropy, and/or the RH/RR/RJ movements, and in conjunction with the If/When/How’s Legal & Policy team, monitor relevant issues on the ground and identify risks and opportunities in the field that may impact Fund activities.
● Participate in staff meetings, department meetings, trainings, and retreats.
● Prepare reports on Fund activity and make presentations to the Board of Directors.
EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE:
● J.D. or equivalent professional legal experience
● A minimum of 15 years of overall professional experience with 5+ years of experience leading teams, programs, and/or organization
● A minimum of 10 years of legal experience in one or more of the following areas:
o criminal defense in the U.S.
o litigation or policy work directed at criminal legal system reform in the U.S.
o legal defense fund management
● Experience managing, mentoring, and supporting the professional growth of team members
● Current bar admission in one or more states
● Knowledge of U.S. criminal law as it intersects with reproductive health, rights, and justice strongly preferred
● Experience launching a new project/program/organization strongly preferred
REQUIRED KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES:
● Commitment to social justice and racial justice/anti-racist principles.
● Familiarity with reproductive health, rights, and justice issues and frameworks.
● Ability to manage across multiple levels in an intersectional and complex environment.
● Strong systems management and development skills.
● Program development/management skills with demonstrated success in leading projects and evolving and innovating programs.
● Self-motivation and ability to work independently, prioritize tasks, and efficiently manage multiple projects at once.
● Collaborative team player with ability to give and receive constructive feedback.
● Excellent written and verbal communication.
● Flexibility and adaptability to change and growth.
● Ability to thrive in a virtual workplace and willingness to build relationships remotely.
● Strong proficiency with Microsoft Office, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
● Facility with online database, project management, file sharing, and workplace communications platforms and apps.
ORGANIZATIONAL RELATIONSHIPS: Reports to If/When/How’s Managing Director & General Counsel and supervises staff at the Legal Defense Fund. Works closely with the If/When/How’s Senior Legal & Policy Director, Executive Director, and Chief Operating Officer.
WORK ENVIRONMENT: If/When/How maintains a virtual office and supports remote working and flexible work days. Reimbursements for home office equipment and supplies are available. Occasionally, employees may be expected to be available during off-hours and/or to attend events (e.g., conferences, staff retreats) on nights or weekends.
PHYSICAL DEMANDS: Most work will be done at a computer. Requires typing and participating in meetings (live and virtual). Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these and other essential functions.
TRAVEL: Travel is suspended until further notice due to COVID-19. Typically: willingness to travel approximately 2-3 times quarterly within the continental U.S. Travel will be required to support team work and attend staff retreats, conferences, and professional development opportunities.
If/When/How is launching a Legal Defense Fund to provide financial resources to bolster strong defenses and mitigate the costs borne by individuals who are criminalized for self-managed abortion. The Fund will offer assistance to people…
If/When/How provides a generous benefits package consisting of fully paid insurance coverage for health, vision, dental, life, and disability; flexible spending accounts (FSA) for health, dependent care, and transportation; retirement plan; sick leave, vacation (starting at 15 days a year, on an accrual basis), and holidays (including birthdays); plus a one-week office closure in December. Employees also receive generous professional development stipends and paid memberships to bar associations.
If/When/How provides a generous benefits package consisting of fully paid insurance coverage for health, vision, dental, life, and disability; flexible spending accounts (FSA) for…
Fluent in English with strong written and verbal communication skills.
Fluent in English with strong written and verbal communication skills.
Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and accepted until the position is filled. Please only apply if you meet the qualifications, including residing in the United States; unqualified candidates will not be considered.
Send the following to firstname.lastname@example.org:
● Cover letter that speaks to how your experience and skill set meet the qualifications for this position;
● Writing sample - legal brief or op-ed; and
● List of three (3) references with contact and relationship information (title, where/when you worked together, and Linkedin profile, if available)
Please let us know where you heard about this position.
If/When/How: Lawyering for Reproductive Justice is an “at-will” and equal opportunity employer, committed to attracting, developing, and retaining exceptional people. We welcome and encourage applicants with diverse experiences, identities, and educational backgrounds. Applicants and employees shall not be discriminated against because of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, gender (including pregnancy and gender expression) identity, color, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, or any other classification protected by federal, state, or local law or ordinance.
Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and accepted until the position is filled. Please only apply if you meet the qualifications, including residing in the United…