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Job Opening

Senior Staff Attorney

Posted February 8, 2024

Muslim Advocates (MA)—a national legal-advocacy, social-justice, and educational organization since 2005—seeks applications from highly talented and motivated attorneys wishing to join our dynamic and growing legal team as a senior staff attorney.

Status: Full time

Classification: Exempt

Location: MA’s staff works remotely, with most of the team based on the East Coast. Periodic domestic travel for staff gatherings, court appearances, case development, fundraising events, and other professional reasons is required.

Reports to: Legal Director

Background: MA’s movement-centered mission works intersectionality with and for diverse Muslim and historically marginalized communities to build community power, fight systemic oppression, and demand shared wellbeing. We support and defend community interests by working in coalition with grassroots and community-based partners. Together with partners, we seek to dismantle discriminatory systems, including systems of state surveillance, mass incarceration, detention and deportation, and family regulation. As we grow, we also strive to support and defend movements demanding shared wellbeing and economic justice by fighting for what all people need to live, including food security, housing security, healthcare, public benefits, and wage/income security. Recognizing the inherent limitations of any singular strategy, we use a combination of public education, policy work, systemic-change litigation (including amicus briefing), direct legal services, and technical assistance to movement leaders and community-based partners.

The senior staff attorney will play a key role in our mission-driven growth across these areas of work by collaborating rigorously, under the leadership of our legal director, with internal and external colleagues and various allies and partners.

Roles and Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Provide technical expertise/assistance to partners
  • Participate in ongoing advocacy coalitions
  • Develop relationships with grassroots and organizational partners and related, shared advocacy
  • Develop and present Know Your Rights (KYR) guidance
  • Develop trainings for advocates
  • Federal and/or state/local policy advocacy, as required
  • Screen and follow up on intakes
  • In-depth, complex legal research and writing for both litigation and non-litigation advocacy
  • Oral advocacy and communications/media/public advocacy relating to both litigation and non-litigation work
  • Litigation work, including but not limited to: identifying and weighing potential legal claims/arguments/strategies; client contact, advisals, and communications; drafting pleadings, motions, and briefs; strategizing for and conducting written and oral discovery; strategizing for, exploring, and guiding settlement negotiations
  • Oversee interns and fellows

Qualifications: Success as a senior staff attorney requires the following:

  • Sound professional judgment
  • Rigorous critical-thinking skills
  • Strong oral and written communication skills
  • Exceptional time-management and organizational skills
  • Demonstrated ability to work and collaborate effectively in a remote environment as part of a team, with clients, and with myriad partners and allies
  • Consistently demonstrating initiative and accountability for all areas of your work
  • Ability to receive and implement feedback effectively
  • Flexibility and adaptation in response to shifting priorities
  • At least 5 years of practice experience as an attorney
  • Subject-matter expertise and advocacy experience in one or more of the following areas:
    • immigration detention-and-deportation system
    • criminal legal system
    • prisoners’ rights and carceral abolition
    • legal frameworks concerning putative national security
    • students’ rights under the First Amendment and under Title VI of the Civil Rights Acts of 1964
    • low-wage workers’ rights
    • litigation and advocacy under:
      • constitutional and statutory civil-rights frameworks, including: disability rights
      • the Federal Tort Claims Act
      • transparency frameworks (the Freedom of Information Act and state/local equivalents)
  • Demonstrated experience in:
    • movement and client-centered lawyering
    • intersectional racial and social justice work
    • participating in, maintaining, expanding, and building advocacy coalitions
  • Understanding and fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and beyond

In addition, candidates should have a J.D. from an accredited university, be admitted in good standing to the bar of any state and/or the District of Columbia, be fluent in oral and written English, and be willing and able to travel as the demands of the position require.

Additional/Preferred Qualifications: The ideal candidate will have:

  • Experience litigating in federal and state courts, including in complex civil litigation
  • Experience with federal and state/local policy advocacy
  • Experience preparing administrative complaints directed to civil-rights bodies within federal and state/local agencies
  • Fluency in ASL (American Sign Language), ISL (International Sign Language), and/or one or more non-English languages (with a preference for Arabic, Urdu, Dari, Farsi, Pashto, Tajik, and/or Uzbek)
  • Demonstrated experience in:
    • applying cultural humility in interactions with others
    • applying trauma-informed approaches in interactions with others

Equal-Opportunity Employment: MA is proud to be an equal-opportunity employer. Black, indigenous, and other people of color, people with disabilities, individuals with diverse traditions and beliefs (non-religious or religious), people with any gender identity or expression, LGBTQIA+ people, and people with lived experience of economic struggle are strongly encouraged to apply.

Salary and Compensation: The salary is commensurate with experience and subject to union collective bargaining. The preferred level of experience is seven plus years of legal practice and the expected salary range is $100,000 – 110,000. We determine salary based on established salary bands, relevant experience, and the extent to which candidates demonstrate the competencies for the role during the hiring process. Muslim Advocates offers a generous and comprehensive benefits package.

How to Apply: Interested candidates should apply online through this link:

https://muslimadvocates.applytojob.com/apply/72OMgLdc7u/Senior-Staff-Attorney

Please be sure to upload the following materials with your application:

  1. a cover letter specifying your interest in working with MA and your skills and relevant experience
  2. a resume
  3. a list of references, including:
    1. at least one and up to three people who have supervised you (ideally within the past 5-10 years),
    2. at least one person with whom you’ve professionally collaborated (ideally within the past 5-10 years, and ideally including 1+ non-attorney advocates/allies),
    3. and, if applicable, at least one person whose work you have supervised (ideally within the past 5-10 years)
  4. two legal-writing samples no greater than 20 pages in length each and that are an accurate reflection of work that you did either exclusively or predominantly. (Please either certify that the work is yours exclusively or otherwise specify who supervised the drafting/editing and whether we may contact them).

While we prefer candidates with all of the required qualifications, if you do not have all of them but are compelled to apply because you think you’d be a great fit, you’re welcome to do so, explaining why in your cover letter. We’re open to considering passionate individuals with a strong learning mindset and relevant, transferable skills.

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis and accepted until the position is filled.

For more information about MA, visit: www.muslimadvocates.org.