Mission: Washington Innocence Project (WashIP) works to identify, rectify, and prevent wrongful criminal convictions in Washington State by: Providing free post-conviction legal and investigative services to individuals with viable claims of actual innocence; Supporting our Freed and Exonerated Family as they rebuild their lives in freedom; and Promoting education, policy reform, system change, and culture change to prevent future injustice.
About: WashIP is an independent 501 (c)(3) charitable organization, distinct and separately run and funded from the Innocence Project based in New York City. The third innocence organization established in the United States, WashIP has been in continual operation since 1997 and remains an active founding member of the national Innocence Network. WashIP’s efforts have led to the passage of four state laws to improve the system, and freedom for 25 innocent men and women in Washington State, 15 of whom have been fully exonerated.
Position Summary: WashIP’s Litigation Director reports to the Executive Director and is responsible for delivery of the highest-quality representation to those pursuing post-conviction actual innocence claims in Washington State’s trial, appellate, and Federal Courts. This position manages the organization’s litigation practice; supervises staff and pro bono attorneys as they evaluate applications for assistance and provide direct representation to clients; and supports the Executive Director’s community engagement, policy reform, and fundraising initiatives.
Essential Job Functions:
- Supervise, train, and support pro bono and staff attorneys;
- Provide advice on legal strategy and case-handling;
- Assign and monitor caseloads in collaboration with the Litigation Coordinator;
- Manage data collection and progress on federal grant initiatives;
- Maintain an active caseload appropriate for the leadership position;
- Draft, review, and edit a variety of motions and briefs;
- Support the Executive & Policy Director by: synthesizing case-related metrics for use in policy reform efforts; participating in community education and outreach events such as CLE and Town Hall presentations; and engaging as needed in fundraising efforts.
Skills & Competencies:
- Collegial, collaborative manager who understands the value and power of teams;
- Superior writing and editing skills, including drafting and editing complex briefs and providing substantive review and editing of the work of attorneys;
- Outstanding interpersonal skills;
- Client-centered approach to legal representation;
- Enthusiasm for the unique role and value of WashIP in efforts to achieve social justice, including a demonstrated commitment to public interest law and criminal justice reform.
Location: This position is based in Seattle, Washington with the option to work up to 40% (2 days/week) remote, except when case demands require additional on-site support for the Litigation Team. Occasional training and case-related travel may be required.
Physical demands: While performing the duties of this job, the Litigation Director be required to be stationary as well as move throughout the office or external offices; communicate over the phone; and operate keyboards, computer, phone, and other peripherals. When working remotely, the Litigation Director must have access to a reliable Wi-Fi connection and the ability to be reached via phone and text message.
Emotional demands: WashIP cases often require discussion of difficult topics including but not limited to sexual assault, domestic abuse, racial discrimination, and violence.
- Attorney with an active license and a minimum of 7 years of felony trial and/or appellate experience in criminal defense, post-conviction litigation, or other criminal litigation;
- Three or more years of experience effectively supervising lawyers in criminal practice;
- An interest and familiarity with the use of forensic science in criminal litigation;
- Admitted to the Washington State Bar or eligible for reciprocity.
Washington Innocence Project is an equal opportunity employer committed to ensuring diversity among our applicant pool as well as within our staff and board to reflect the clients and communities we serve. We strongly encourage candidates from diverse backgrounds to apply for this position. In your letter of interest, we invite you to tell us how your unique background and/or experiences can contribute to the diversity, vitality, and cultural perspective of our staff, clients, and case work. All members of the WashIP staff embrace, advocate for, and deeply value equity, diversity, and inclusivity. WashIP does not discriminate in the selection of employees based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, sexual identity, age, national origin, disability, former incarceration status, or veteran status.
Benefits: Medical, dental, and vision insurance; 401(k); Transit pass, Flexible schedule.
Salary Range: $95,000 – $125,000 depending on experience and qualifications.
To Apply: Submit a resume, letter of interest, and writing sample via email with “Litigation Director” in the subject line to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Open until filled. Preference will be given to applications received by July 13, 2022.