Job Announcement Managing Attorney – Eviction Defense Northwest Justice Project (NJP) offers a unique leadership opportunity in a mission-driven organization serving the civil legal aid needs of low-income people and communities throughout Washington State. As a not-for-profit law firm, NJP provides free civil legal services to address barriers and promote justice for all low-income persons in Washington. NJP pursues its mission of Combating Injustice • Strengthening Communities • Protecting Human Dignity through legal advice and representation, community partnerships, and education to empower clients and combat injustice in all its forms. NJP is seeking a Managing Attorney to help launch and oversee a new Statewide Eviction Defense Unit to protect the rights of low-income tenants across Washington State. This position may be located in any of NJP’s 20 offices in the state.
Northwest Justice Project’s Managing Attorneys play a critical role in the statewide delivery of civil legal assistance. They are responsible for the overall management of the regional offices and specialized units comprising NJP statewide law firm and carry out NJP’s vision, mission, Strategic Plan and other initiatives and goals.
The Managing Attorney will directly supervise and manage the staff attorneys and support staff assigned to the Statewide Eviction Defense Unit (the Unit) and will provide overall leadership in the development and operation of the Unit.
RESPONSIBILITIES The Eviction Defense Unit Managing Attorney will provide essential leadership and be responsible for implementation of NJP’s response to the historic statewide Right to Counsel program authorized by the Washington State Legislature, consistent with guidance from the courts and the Office of Civil Legal Aid. The Eviction Defense Managing Attorney will oversee the law practice of the Eviction Defense Unit and work with the statewide team of Managing Attorneys as a critical part of NJP’s leadership team. Managing Attorney responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
Operating and maintaining an effective Eviction Defense Unit to meet the protect the rights and homes of low-income persons facing eviction throughout Washington State.
Ensuring that staff work to advance NJP’s mission and vision, consistent with NJP program and regulatory policies and procedures.
Providing direct supervision of advocate and support staff, ensuring that staff are trained and mentored in the delivery of eviction defense services throughout the state, and overseeing statewide community outreach about the availability of eviction defense representation and assistance as may be necessary.
Together with the Statewide Advocacy Counsel for housing, acting as a liaison between the Eviction Defense Unit and NJP field offices and other units to ensure effective coordination between NJP programs to identify needed systemic improvements in eviction defense and housing rights around the state.
Acting as a liaison between NJP’s Eviction Defense Unit and other organizations, volunteer attorneys and contract attorneys providing eviction defense services to low-income tenants throughout Washington.
Forging relationships with and between providers of eviction mediation services, rental assistance providers, and the courts to ensure justice for low-income renters facing eviction across the state. The Managing Attorney may occasionally provide direct client representation as appropriate within the framework of their duties, but this position will largely involve management and supervision of assistant managing attorneys and staff attorneys providing direct representation to eligible persons. Key areas of focus include: Supervision of advocate and support staff Development, maintenance of local community, public relations and community engagement Case review, acceptance and priority setting Program policy and general compliance Leadership within unit, community, and the program Equity and inclusion - NJP has adopted the Washington Race Equity and Justice Initiative (REJI) and is organizationally committed to fight racism and to incorporate equity and inclusion in our advocacy work and our internal systems and work environment. NJP expects all staff to uphold the REJI commitments and approach their role with a desire to learn and grow in this area. The Managing Attorney is expected to act as a leader in these efforts, center race equity in advocacy determinations, support staff’s anti-racist growth and development, and be committed to identify, and work to address Unit and program challenges and shortcomings in this work. (Full job posting may be found here)
Minimum five years’ legal experience with strong litigation skills required
Experience litigating housing or unlawful detainer actions strongly preferred
Prior experience successfully managing or supervising others in a professional environment preferred
Experience in a formal or informal leadership role helpful
History of successfully mentoring other attorneys and/or law students required
Leadership of, involvement in, or demonstrated ability to identify and successfully pursue strategic, systemic, and affirmative advocacy
Commitment to advancing racial equity and experience with incorporating racial equity principles into advocacy and leadership
Appreciation of the differing strengths, skills, and styles of those supervised
Good judgment, ability to handle stress, initiative, and willingness to work as a team
Strong oral and written communication skills
Demonstrated relevant work experience as well as a commitment to serving low-income persons
Willingness and ability to engage with the communities to be served
Washington State Bar Association membership in good standing or active license in another state with the ability to obtain WSBA membership by motion is required
Language proficiency in a language spoken by our client communities, especially Spanish, is a plus
NJP will consider the full breadth of a candidate’s experience to determine an applicant’s qualification for the position.
Salary Range: Specific salary will be based upon relevant experience starting at $95,000.
To Apply: Submit a letter of interest, current resume and writing sample to Human Resources at firstname.lastname@example.org. Cover letter and email subject line should clearly reference “Managing Attorney – Evictions Unit”. Cover letter should directly address reason for interest in the position and outline experience mentoring others.
Application Deadline: Position will remain open until filled, with priority given to those applications received by May 3, 2021
NJP is committed to a policy of equal opportunity and fosters an environment free of barriers and discriminatory practices. NJP actively promotes mutual respect, acceptance, teamwork and productivity. NJP is committed to maintaining an organization whose staff, Board and clients are diverse in background, experience, race, color, national origin, gender, age, religious preference, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, sensory, mental or physical abilities, veteran status, and other qualities that strengthen the program while reinforcing its commitment to basic fairness. People of color, people who identify as transgender, lesbian, gay, or bisexual, and those with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. Individuals needing a reasonable accommodation for the application or interview process or for more information about the project should contact Human Resources at (206) 464-1519.