Closing Date: 31st December, 2021


The Office of the State Public Defender (SPD) is currently seeking dedicated litigators for our Assistant State Public Defender (ASPD) position to fill vacancies in our trial offices statewide. This is your opportunity to work with a group of individuals that are zealous and compassionate advocates on behalf of their clients.

We currently have openings in the following offices: Ashland, Barron, Eau Claire, Fond du Lac, Hudson, Kenosha, La Crosse, Madison, Milwaukee, Monroe, Oshkosh, Racine, Stevens Point, Waukesha, and Wausau.

SPD’s mission is to enhance the quality of justice throughout Wisconsin by providing high-quality cost-effective representation to indigent clients, protecting the rights of accused individuals, and by serving as advocates for effective defense services and a rational criminal justice system.

The SPD is extremely proud that its system of indigent defense is considered a model for public defender programs around the world. If you are a highly motivated, talented and dedicated attorney interested in working in one of our trial offices, please apply now. The SPD serves indigent clients in all 72 Wisconsin counties as authorized by the state legislature. For more information visit our website at

Employees are offered a comprehensive benefits package including a top-rated health plan, vacation leave, nine paid holidays, and the ability to participate in one of the best retirement plans offered. For a complete list of benefits, click here and here. Additionally, employees may be eligible for student loan forgiveness through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.

Position Summary:
The SPD Trial Division provides legal representation at the circuit court (trial court) level. Click here for the trial attorney position description. The types of cases include criminal, civil commitment, protective placement (personal guardianship), revocation of conditional liberty (probation, parole, or extended supervision), sexually violent offender commitment, termination of parental rights, children in need of protection or services, juvenile delinquency proceedings, and others as specified by state law.

Salary Information:
The starting salary for these positions will be between $62,400 and $104,000 annually and will be determined based on experience and qualifications. Positions are unclassified and in pay schedule/range 21-75.

Job Details:
Successful candidates must be admitted to practice law by the Wisconsin Supreme Court prior to their start date. See the Wisconsin State Bar for admission requirements.

A criminal background check will be done prior to an offer of employment.

This position requires experience representing criminal cases or an emphasis on criminal course work in law school. An ASPD must possess a strong sense of commitment and dedication to indigent defense. Requirements include the ability to manage a deadline driven caseload; strong litigation skills; strong writing skills; effective communication skills; and the ability to interact professionally with co-workers, justice officials, clients and others in the office and court system. Fluency in a foreign language is a plus.

Deadline to Apply:
The deadline to apply is 11:59 pm on Friday, December 31, 2021.