Posted on July 2, 2024 Full Time Operations

Chief Technology Officer

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Chief Technology Officer

San Francisco, CA Washington, D.C.

The Opportunity

For over 50 years, Earthjustice has protected the environment and advocated for the rights of all living beings by using the power of the law to fight for justice and ensure a sustainable future for our planet. Earthjustice takes on the biggest, most precedent-setting cases across the country. In hundreds of legal cases, from public utility commissions to our nation’s highest court, Earthjustice has protected wild spaces, the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the future of life itself. Behind every major environmental win, you will find Earthjustice. The time is now for Earthjustice to influence the transition to a clean economy and address the imperatives of climate change and biodiversity.

For this, Earthjustice seeks a skilled and visionary Chief Technology Officer (CTO) to join its leadership team and lead the evolution of the Information Technology (I.T.) department from an operational support function to a strategic business partner.

The next CTO, internally known as Vice President of Information Technology, has a unique opportunity to join an exceptional organization at a pivotal moment with new potential for the mission and movement.

As an accomplished thought leader and partner, the CTO will join a highly skilled and committed senior leadership team focused on finding the best practices and technology solutions to move Earthjustice’s work forward.

This leadership role is critically important and transformative. As Earthjustice continues to evolve, grow and deliver critical support to protect the environment and people’s health, the CTO will be a team-oriented, inspiring leader and establish and direct an I.T. strategy to enhance the achievement of Earthjustice’s mission in partnership with leaders across the organization. Key components of the strategy will include transformation to cloud-based services, firmwide cyber security initiatives, implementation of customer relationship management (CRM) and a document management system (DMS) and improved and expanded I.T. services and support for the organization.

The CTO will report to the SVP of Operations (COO), oversee a dedicated team, and partner with stakeholders across Earthjustice, including fundraising, communications, program, and operations.

The Organization

Founded in 1971, Earthjustice is the nation’s largest, oldest, and most active public-interest environmental law organization. Its staff of over 575—including over 200 litigators—wields the power of law and the strength of partnership to protect public health, address environmental injustice, defend irreplaceable ecosystems, and transition the U.S. economy to 100% clean energy while working to protect people and the planet from climate change. Earthjustice partners with thousands of groups, tribes, individuals, and communities to address the environmental crises of our time. Earthjustice is here because the Earthneeds a good lawyer.

In the past year, Earthjustice has achieved watershed victories in long-running fights to stop drilling in the Western Arctic, block massive oil and gas lease sales on public lands and coasts, keep the Tongass Forest off limits to logging, ban the neurotoxin chlorpyrifos, retire polluting coalfired power plants in the U.S. and abroad, prevent mining in the Boundary Waters, and restore Endangered Species Act protections for wolves and Clean Water Act protections for streams and wetlands nationwide. They also achieved cutting-edge, precedent-setting wins to build off-shore wind, replace gas with zero emissions heat pumps in buildings, enforce vanguard state climate laws, compel regulatory reforms that enable clean energy to outcompete fossil fuels, block construction of new gas-fired power plants, and stop cryptocurrency miners from re-starting shuttered coal plants. (Source).

Earthjustice is headquartered in San Francisco and has an operating budget of $165M and a staff of approximately 575. In addition to lawyers, the staff includes legal and research analysts, policy and legislation experts, staff scientists, development officers, and communications professionals across 15 offices. Staff work in a hybrid environment and are sometimes fully remote.

A workplace anchored in justice, partnership, diversity, equity, and inclusion, Earthjustice’s culture is built on respect, empathy and active learning. Earthjustice prioritizes equity in hiring practices, staff development, financial practices, and advancement. Earthjustice’s culture of inclusion promotes agency, open feedback, comfort, humor, and joy. It is an atmosphere where employees thrive and grow, where satisfaction is high, and attrition is very low. These priorities and values are also reflected in the organization’s board members, who insist on and safeguard the highest standards of good governance. 


The Mandate

The organization is well positioned to capitalize on the current opportunity to create a new clean energy economy and stabilize the climate. Both the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and the Infrastructure Investments and Jobs Act (IIJA) boost clean energy development, dramatically reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, accelerate the electrification of buildings and transportation, and invest in communities overburdened by pollution. With organizational strategy and growth, Earthjustice’s position as the powerhouse in environmental litigation, advocacy, and movement building meets this moment.

The CTO to lead in this time of escalation and demand will be an experienced, adaptive leader with passion for the mission of environmental justice. Reporting to the COO and Senior Vice President for Operations, Andrew Jackson, the CTO will be a valued strategist and thought partner to the COO, a highly collaborative and high- functioning Operations leadership team, and a motivated and effective I.T. team.

The Chief Technology Officer will be a collaborative and emotionally intelligent leader who will champion improvements to Earthjustice’s information technology and its integration throughout the organization. As Earthjustice has grown rapidly, departments have implemented technology and applications to meet their unique needs. The CTO will work to rationalize systems and data in partnership with stakeholders and leaders across Earthjustice and position the organization for continued growth and excellence in technology operations.

Earthjustice is in the process of selecting a customer relationship management and document management system. The CTO will oversee the implementation of both systems, understanding the importance of mapping process flows, integrating key systems, and the unique user requirements of a law firm. The CTO will manage a budget of $6.5M and a staff of 15. Key responsibilities include:

Provide Vision and Leadership

  • Establish and direct an I.T. strategy aligned with Earthjustice’s goals.
  • Develop an I.T. roadmap with a defined system and application architecture.
  • Establish the I.T. department as a consistently valued strategic partner, advisor, and collaborator.
  • Work across the organization to assess I.T. needs and implement solutions that support both the mission of the individual department and align with the entire organization.
  • Advocate and lead by example, connecting with all levels of the organization and rolling up sleeves in partnership to complete projects and address needs.

Lead Implementation of Key Projects

  • Manage I.T. projects and ensure timely completion, quality implementation, and end- user satisfaction, including migration to the cloud, CRM, and DMS.
  • Define clear roles and responsibilities of I.T. and individual business units.
  • Lead cyber security initiatives to protect the organization.

Enhance User Experience

  • Build relationships with Earthjustice’s’ regional offices, ensuring they are well-represented in technology decision-making.
  • As the organization continues hybrid operations, establish consistent technology implementation across regions.
  • Effectively manage the day-to-day of distributed platforms.

Manage the firm’s I.T. infrastructure, including hardware, software, and networks

  • Identify and implement new technologies to improve the efficiency of the I.T. systems.
  • Understand A.I. and be responsible for its effective and safe implementation as needed.
  • Develop, track, analyze, and monitor technology performance metrics.
  • Protect the security, confidentiality, integrity, and availability of the organization’s data.

Manage the Team and the Department

  • Nurture, champion, and develop the technology team through collaboration and mentorship.
  • Identify skill gaps and create and model continuous learning and improvement.
  • Create and model continuous learning and improvement and foster a culture of excellence, innovation, and responsiveness.
  • Demonstrate exceptional emotional intelligence to lead with empathy and a commitment to effective and durable conflict resolution.
  • Foster a culture of excellence, innovation, and responsiveness.
  • Bring clarity and decisive leadership focused on priorities, processes, and results.
  • Effectively manage the I.T. operating and capital budget.
  • Actively create a respectful and inclusive work environment.


  • Work across all areas and collaborate closely with the leaders and staff of development, human resources, programs and operations to align technology strategy with priorities.
  • Be a true partner to all Earthjustice operations by providing technology strategy expertise and simplifying, not overcomplicating processes.
  • Build relationships and trust with partners and client organizations.
  • Identify and evaluate opportunities to streamline and simplify processes and tools through partnerships, collaborations, and innovative technology solutions.


The Candidate

The Chief Technology Officer will be a compelling senior leader and advanced practitioner with a depth of technology and change management leadership experience in a similarly complex and/ or larger organization. The leader will establish I.T. as a trusted partner and advisor, migrating the organization toward a comprehensive I.T. plan.

Essential Assets include:

  • Exceptional executive functioning with steady self-awareness, intentional diplomacy, and maturity.
  • High emotional intelligence with ability to adapt to a continually evolving environment and find common ground among diverse perspectives and stakeholders.
  • Experience leading a diverse team with understanding of the impact of one’s behavior.
  • Deep cultural competence reflecting humility and true desire for ongoing learning about different cultures, backgrounds, and orientations.
  • Experience integrating cultural competencies in leadership practices to build and strengthen Earthjustice’s inclusive workplace and build trust among staff.
  • Confidence and humility to press forward with certainty and pause with humility when you must learn more.
  • Strong work ethic with high personal and professional standards of transparency and accountability.
  • Authentic passion for the mission and work of Earthjustice.
  • Ability and interest in operating at both strategic and hands-on levels.
  • A balance of self-confidence and humility to build consensus, make tough decisions and thrive.
  • Demonstrated ability to exhibit high levels of transparency, self-awareness, and vulnerability.
  • High integrity, someone who is both trusted and trustworthy.
  • Active listener who is comfortable with conflict in the pursuit of excellence.

Professional experience:

  • Experience developing and executing an enterprise-wide technology strategy for a multi- site, complex organization.
  • Proven ability to lead cross-functional teams that successfully build and deliver leading-edge technology.
  • Effective change management experience.
  • Experience selecting and managing 3rd party vendors.
  • Exceptional technology project management and implementation skills.
  • Experience working in a non-profit, a law firm, or another regulated environment is a plus.

Technical experience:

  • A minimum of 10 years of technology leadership experience.
  • Expertise in implementing and supporting leading digital technologies and services, particularly cloud/hosted, managed, and cyber security solutions.
  • Deep analytical and enterprise data management experience, including CRM and DMS.
  • Experience with information security frameworks, infrastructure, policies, procedures, and training tools.

Personal assets:

  • High emotional intelligence, collaborative, and consultative.
  • A good listener who inspires trust and confidence, remains open to the ideas of others and is not threatened by input and feedback.
  • Passion for the mission of Earthjustice.
  • Growth mindset.
  • A bachelor’s degree or equivalent is required; a master’s degree is desirable.

The Relationships

The Chief Technology Officer’s internal title is Vice President of Information Technology.

Reports to: The Senior Vice President of Operations (COO)

Collaborates with:

  • Executive Leadership Team
  • Operations Leadership Team
  • Senior Management Team

Leads a team of 16 in total, directly supervising seven:

  • I.T. Operations Manager
  • Director of I.T. Service Delivery
  • Database Manager
  • Information Security Manager
  • Chief Information Security Officer
  • Technical Process Analyst
  • Enterprise Systems Integration Manager

Salary & Benefits

The Location

Earthjustice is headquartered in San Francisco and has offices in Anchorage, Juneau, Los Angeles, Tallahassee, Honolulu, New York, Philadelphia, Miami, Denver, Seattle, Bozeman, and Washington, D.C. I.T. staff are located primarily in San Francisco and D.C. The preference is for the Chief Technology Officer to work in San Francisco, where they will have effective and frequent collaboration with senior leadership and work closely with the Operations team.


This position offers a competitive salary and includes a comprehensive benefits package. Compensation is based on experience and location, with an expected starting salary range of $266,000 to $295,600 for San Francisco. The salary range for Washington, D.C. is $252,800 to $280,900.

How to Apply

For potential consideration or to recommend a prospect, please email appropriate materials to: or call Patti Kish, Terri Kohan or Crystal Stephens at 404-262-7392.

Working at Earthjustice

Hybrid Work

Earthjustice employs a “team-centered” approach to hybrid work, where teams collaboratively shape their unique workflow, including what work location — virtual or in-office — is best for them and the tasks at hand.

Earthjustice is an equal opportunity employer

As an equal opportunity employer, Earthjustice is 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, genetic information, or any other factor specified under applicable laws that is not related to the position.

Fair Chance Hiring

Earthjustice will consider qualified applicants with a criminal history pursuant to the California Fair Chance Act, and any applicable local ordinance, such as the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, the Los Angeles County Fair Chance Act, or the Los Angeles City Fair Chance Initiative. You do not need to disclose your criminal history or participate in a background check until a conditional job offer is made to you.

After making a conditional offer and running a background check, if Earthjustice is concerned about conviction that is directly related to the job, you will be given the chance to explain the circumstances surrounding the conviction, provide mitigating evidence, or challenge the accuracy of the background report.

Our Values

Earthjustice is driven by a passion for justice, partnership, inclusion, 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.

Our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion

Green 2.0 Pay Equity Pledge

As part of Green 2.0’s Transparency Report Card, Earthjustice is committed to ensuring pay equity for people of color.

Live Well, Work Well

Earthjustice offers a competitive compensation plan, as well as a comprehensive benefits package. We pay 100% of all health and welfare benefits premiums for the employee.

Our health coverage includes medical, dental, prescription, vision and alternative care. We are proud to offer a generous vacation, sick leave, and disability benefit package. Additional benefits include retirement plan, flexible spending account, company-sponsored life insurance, and more.

Earthjustice also offers six weeks of fully paid sabbatical leave, following 10 years of continuous employment.

As a 501(c)3 organization, Earthjustice is a qualifying employer for purposes of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.