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Posted on December 20, 2021

Managing Attorney, Clean Energy Program

Washington, D.C.; Chicago, IL; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA; or San Francisco, CA


Earthjustice is the nation’s premier nonprofit environmental law organization. We take on the biggest, most precedent-setting cases across the country. We wield the power of law and the strength of partnership to protect people’s health; fight environmental injustice; defend magnificent places and irreplaceable ecosystems; transition our economy to 100% clean energy for all; and combat climate change. We partner with thousands of groups, tribes, individuals, and communities to address the critical environmental issues of our time and bring about positive change. We are guided by a passionate, ambitious vision for the future for people and our planet: until justice stands for all, we will never rest. We are here because the earth needs a good lawyer.

Founded in 1971, Earthjustice has a distinguished track record of achieving significant, lasting environmental protections. We achieve this by hiring excellent staff who share a passion for justice and a healthy environment. Our headquarters are in San Francisco with offices in Anchorage, Juneau, Los Angeles, Tallahassee, Miami, Chicago, Honolulu, New Orleans, New York, Philadelphia, Denver, Seattle, Bozeman, and Washington, D.C., and we are opening an office in Houston.

Earthjustice is among the leading national environmental groups in terms of diversifying its staff and increasing attention to racial justice in programmatic work in the environmental sector. We are committed to improving Earthjustice both internally (by creating an equitable and inclusive workplace) and externally (by fighting for racial justice through environmental work).

Earthjustice’s Clean Energy Program litigates and advocates in state and federal courts and before energy and environmental regulators across the country to advance an equitable transition from fossil fuels to clean energy, and to hold polluters accountable. Earthjustice presently has two programs focused on cleaning up the power sector and accelerating a clean energy transition — the Coal Program and Clean Energy Program. The former focuses on ending our nation’s reliance on dirty, expensive, and outdated coal-fired power, cleaning up coal’s toxic legacy, and blocking a rush to build new gas generation that would crowd out clean energy development. The latter focuses on breaking down barriers and increasing access to clean energy resources, including energy efficiency, solar, wind, demand response, and storage; advancing electrification; and opposing efforts to build new gas-fired power plants. Recognizing the synergies that exist across these dedicated teams, we are combining these highly effective programs into one Clean Energy Program, covering the work of both teams.

The Managing Attorney will lead and oversee the work of this new Clean Energy Program, providing leadership for a team comprised of roughly 40+ attorneys and professional staff. The Managing Attorney will directly supervise a team of four Deputy Managing Attorneys and other supervisors, who have responsibilities related to management, supervision, and/or program leadership. The Managing Attorney will manage, develop, and implement strategies that align with organization-wide strategic plans and programmatic and litigation priorities. They also will drive efforts to build and maintain effective working relationships with clients and partners, as well as with the news media, government officials, and supporters, and will serve as the primary public face of the program.

This is a significant opportunity for a dynamic leader to use their skills, the power of law, and the strength of partnership to deliver meaningful results for the environment, health, and communities across the nation. The Managing Attorney will lead a gifted, diverse team of attorneys and professional staff, and work with them to chart a course for a key program team of the largest public interest environmental law firm in the country. Program leadership and management are equally important skill sets for this position, and the successful candidate will be committed to excellence in both areas.

The Managing Attorney will be based in one of the following Earthjustice offices: Chicago, IL; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA; San Francisco, CA; Washington, D.C., with a preference for Washington D.C. This is not a remote work position. However, Earthjustice has temporarily closed its offices and transitioned staff to remote work during the COVID-19 pandemic. Any staff-wide return to Earthjustice offices will not occur before March 1, 2022.

The Managing Attorney will report to the Vice President of Litigation, Climate & Energy, who is based in Washington, D.C.

Responsibilities:

Program Leadership

  • Leads the program in setting its vision, and in shaping its litigation and legal advocacy docket and related strategies that align with Earthjustice’s mission, strategic plans, core values, priorities, and other administrative policies and guidance.
  • Provides litigation leadership by working collaboratively with attorneys in the program to maximize the quality and impact of the program’s total litigation effort.
  • Builds and maintains effective working relationships with clients, communities, environmental groups, and other partners.
  • Works closely and productively with other teams within the litigation department and with Earthjustice’s policy, communications, and fundraising teams to advance programmatic and institutional goals.
  • Serves as an ambassador and spokesperson for the program and the organization by, among other things, working effectively with the news media, government officials, and supporters.
  • Serves as an active member of the Managing Attorneys group, to help provide institutional leadership and set broader institutional priorities and direction.

Management

  • Manages and leads a diverse team with emotional intelligence and cultural competency.
  • Effects and manages organizational and program change, including the merging of the two programs, through strategic thinking and transparent communication.
  • Manages and guides the development of program staff to ensure they have the training, mentoring, resources, feedback, and support to maximize their performance and skills development.
  • Creates a learning culture, including by implementing practices related to delivering timely and high-quality feedback and by fostering growth through creativity and risk-taking.
  • Provides staff with consistent and ongoing performance feedback, both positive and constructive, and acts as a coach and mentor.
  • Ensures that direct reports are properly executing their supervisory responsibilities.
  • Communicates effectively with staff and encourages them to provide ongoing feedback and raise concerns.
  • Resolves interpersonal conflict among team members.
  • Communicates institutional vision, policies, objectives, and initiatives to staff within the program, to keep them abreast of organizational changes and developments.
  • Creates or identifies strategic opportunities for team building and individual and overall staff engagement with one another.
  • Directly supervises staff and oversees the administrative functions of the program.
  • Works to maximize employee satisfaction and the quality of the team’s work.
  • Works with team members to celebrate successes and learn from setbacks.
  • Fosters a work environment that aligns with Earthjustice’s diversity, equity, and inclusion goals and helps ensure the advancement of such goals.
  • Develops and embraces practices and policies that promote a respectful and inclusive workplace and that foster community and teamwork among a diverse group of staff. Promptly addresses micro-aggressions, implicit biases, and other equity or inclusion concerns brought to their attention.
  • Recruits and hires qualified candidates to support and grow a highly effective program team.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Continued Personal Learning

  • Participates in organization-wide initiatives and trainings that contribute to the creation of a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work culture that encourages and celebrates differences.
  • Utilizes internal and external resources to support their personal and professional development in a way that increases awareness and sensitivity to the needs and concerns of individuals from diverse cultures, backgrounds, and orientations.

Qualifications:

  • Excellent management skills with at least 5 years of managing litigation or legal advocacy teams in a diverse and inclusive environment.
  • Highly effective litigator with substantial experience in environmental, energy, or public interest law, and 10+ years of litigation or legal experience.
  • JD required. Admitted to the bar of the state/jurisdiction where located or accomplishing admittance within 14 months of employment.
  • Excellent management skills, including the ability to lead a team through structural change, and foster effective communication, collaboration, decision-making, and mutual respect.
  • Ability to supervise a complex litigation and advocacy docket and to guide litigation across a range of subject matters, while nurturing professional development.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills that show the ability to build and maintain effective working relationships with a diverse set of clients and other partners.
  • Experience and interest in coaching, guiding, and mentoring staff at different levels of their career development to continually improve their effectiveness.
  • Strong capacity for strategic thinking that encompasses a wide range of issues and leverages multifaceted pragmatic approaches to ensure high-quality and consistent results.
  • Entrepreneurial with the ability to identify and seize new opportunities, combined with the capacity to work well collaboratively as part of regional and national teams.
  • Outstanding written and oral communication skills, with the ability to write and speak clearly and persuasively.
  • Experience working with community and government leaders, and the media.
  • Commitment to making Earthjustice and the Clean Energy Program a highly effective, cutting-edge litigation and legal advocacy shop.
  • Ability to partner productively and respectfully with other organizations, including community-based organizations, to achieve objectives; ability to maintain respectful long-term relationships with clients, allies, and partners.
  • Ability and desire to participate effectively in fundraising efforts by developing and maintaining relationships with donors; experience with fundraising in a professional or volunteer capacity is a plus.
  • Ability to manage operations, including budgets and general office and administrative matters, with support from Legal Practice Manager.
  • Willingness to travel as needed.

Management (Essential Skills):

  • Ability to lead staff through organizational and program change, including the merging of the two programs.
  • Ability to foster mutual respect, effective communication, and collaborative decision-making.
  • Self-awareness and understanding of the impact of behavior and emotional intelligence in the workplace.
  • Excellent cultural competency reflecting the ability to understand different cultures, backgrounds, and orientations and apply that understanding in a management context.
  • Understands individual and team strengths and areas for development and develops plans accordingly.
  • Ability to give and receive regular formal and informal feedback in a timely, constructive, respectful, and consistent manner, and to incorporate debriefing into the team’s operations.
  • Demonstrated experience and interest in coaching, guiding, and mentoring a diverse workforce at different levels of their careers to continuously improve their effectiveness and reach their full potential.
  • Experience recruiting, hiring, developing, and retaining a diverse and inclusive workforce.
  • An understanding of how race dynamics can impact supervisory relationships, organizational culture, partnerships, campaigns, and coalition work. Demonstrated history of promoting racial justice within an organization a plus.
  • An understanding of how systemic racism affects present-day legal systems and an ability to advance racial equity goals through legal strategies.

Salary

We offer a competitive salary and excellent benefits that are comprehensive and competitive. Salary is based on number of years of litigation experience and location.

Salary range in San Francisco or New York City: $208,900 - $232,061

Salary range in Washington, D.C. or Chicago: $198,400 – $220,485

Salary range in Philadelphia: $188,000 - $208,910

To Apply

Earthjustice has retained the services of ThinkingAhead Executive Search. Please submit your resume and expression of interest to: Chris Spagnola, Partner, at cspagnola@thinkingahead.com and Jessica Martinez, Partner, at jmartinez@thinkingahead.com.

The application screening process is ongoing until a candidate is hired.

Earthjustice is driven by a passion for justice, partnership, and excellence. Our core values lead us to seek a broad range of perspectives and backgrounds to achieve our mission and to maintain an inclusive environment where all staff are valued and respected. As an equal opportunity employer, we are committed to employment practices that ensure that employees and applicants for employment are provided with equal opportunities without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, or any other factor that is not related to the position.

For positions located within the City and County of San Francisco Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment-qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.

For positions located within the City of Los Angeles: We will consider qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the Los Angeles Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring.

Accommodation

If you need reasonable accommodation in order to complete the application, interview or some other portion of the selection process for a job at Earthjustice, please contact Human Resources at jobs@earthjustice.org.

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