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General Counsel

Impact Justice is growing and focusing on building the internal infrastructure we need to support the incredible work we do externally! After starting in 2015, we now have a staff of 75, and anticipate even more growth in the near future. We’re looking to expand our DreamBuilders Team, who make everything we accomplish at Impact Justice possible, and we’re looking to hire folks who are experts in Getting It Done! 

Who We Are 

Impact Justice dares to dream of a humane and restorative system of justice in the United States. Through innovation, research, policy, and advocacy, we are forging a new path to a justice system that is fair to all of us. In addition to our core programs around the enforcement of the Prison Rape Elimination Act, Restorative Justice, and the Research and Action Center, we are continually adding more to our portfolio of programs. Overall, we all work to reduce the number of individuals (adults and youth) entangled in the criminal justice system, to improve conditions and outcomes for those who are currently incarcerated, and to provide opportunities to those who are rejoining communities. We employ a national team of advocates, researchers, monitors, practitioners, and experts united by this vision. We work closely with communities of color, the lesbian, gay, bisexual, questioning, gender nonconforming, and transgender communities, the formerly incarcerated, and former foster youth, and we are continually looking for opportunities to bring those with lived experience in those communities into our teams. A majority of individuals on our current executive team identify as BIPOC and/or LGBTQ. We’re committed to living our values and to creating the kinds of equitable and inclusive team environments internally that we fight to help create in our broader communities. Check us out at www.impactjustice.org. 

Who You Are 

You are excited and ready to help the organization build out its first General Counsel role and have a general familiarity with the responsibilities that come with that role in the non-profit and mission-driven space. You understand at a deep level that there is more to lawyering than identifying risk; instead, what is even more important is being able to think creatively and constructively to generate

solutions and provide options that allow for various levels of risk mitigation or exposure. You are comfortable exercising and utilizing strategic judgment to help navigate tricky situations. You believe that Win-Win solutions exist and have to be prioritized, particularly when it comes to employee relations issues. You communicate clearly and concisely, collaborate well with others, and are equally comfortable in situations where you hold decisional authority and where you don’t. You are eager to roll your sleeves up and get work done yourself, but you also have the ability to manage others (whether internal staff or external vendors). You may have served in a larger non-profit’s General Counsel office previously and are looking to step into the lead role for the first time; alternately, you may have served as a smaller non-profit’s General Counsel but are looking to move to a larger and growing organization. 

That said, we know there are great candidates who may not think they fit into what we’ve described above or who have important skills we haven’t thought of. If that is you, don’t hesitate to apply and tell us about yourself! And if you’re a formerly incarcerated individual or someone who has a family member who is or has been incarcerated, we will be particularly excited to hear from you. 

What You Will Do 

The anticipated start date for this position is July, but we can be somewhat flexible on starting earlier or later. You will report directly into our President, but will also have a dotted-line reporting relationship to the Chief Operating Officer. You’ll be the CEO of keeping us safely successful, and your core responsibilities will be: 

  1. Compliance Oversight – You will own oversight and monitoring of Impact Justice’s compliance with the whole host of laws and regulations that govern our work and status as an employer, a 501(c)(3), and a government contractor – including but not limited to federal, state, and local EEO and benefits rules, tax rules, Board governance obligations, and other financial compliance issues. This means you must attend to the range of obligations we take on due to where our employees are situated, where we do our work, and the state and federal compliance obligations that attach to work we do based on government grants. This will involve working closely with our Finance and People Departments. 
  2. Contracting Oversight – You will own all technical aspects of our contracts, from getting template clauses in place, to reviewing existing vendor contracts, to negotiating or approving new contracts (including with vendors for things like insurance and other staff benefits). This will include maintaining clear and comprehensive records of all our contracting obligations and rights, working with programmatic teams to understand their needs and objectives when contracting with external parties, and anticipating and solving for conflicts, overages, or other challenges that may arise.
  1. Executive Team Advising – You will advise the Executive Team and will, in that capacity, be expected to identify and suggest solutions for risks along the way – both in terms of best practices and innovative or out-of-the-box approaches. This may include owning particular projects or initiatives and contributing to others (e.g. attending to record retention and security obligations as part of a broader data security project or partnering with the Director of Finance on annual audit obligations), and will also include working closely with the People Department if and when serious employee relations matters arise. This will include substantial time on strategic planning and response, both in the broad sense and on day-to-day matters. 

Applying 

The position will be paid $130,000 – $145,000, depending on qualifications. The benefits that come with working at Impact Justice include medical, dental, and FSA plans, significant vacation and wellness leave, a generous match and immediate vesting in our 401k. This is a full-time, salaried position. 

We would prefer that the candidate be located in either our Washington DC or Oakland CA office, but we are open to considering remote staff for this position. There will be some travel obligations with this role, the extent to which will depend on where the candidate is permanently located and on the situational needs of the organization. 

If this all sounds like a good fit for you, please send your resume and a brief email or letter explaining why you are particularly interested in the role and why we should be particularly interested in you! You can send this to 

GenCounsel@impactjustice.org. Please have the subject line of the email read “[Your Last Name], [Your First Name] Application for IJ General Counsel

We will be reaching out to those candidates we are prepared to interview within the month following the application deadline of May 14.

Note that we are committed to workplace diversity and providing equal employment opportunities. Please also note that we are going to be especially excited in candidates who understand the unique nature of a mission-driven organization, have direct experience with the criminal legal or juvenile justice legal systems (including if you served as a criminal defense attorney or some other advocacy role in those systems), and have a good sense of humor about themselves and the complexities of collaborating with team members in remote locations.