Closing Date: 12th April, 2024


This recruitment is INTERNAL ONLY and open to current career service A Government Entity, Department of Public Defense employees.

The Department of Public Defense (DPD) is looking to fill one (1) Special Duty Public Defense Attorney – Supervisor position in our Associated Counsel for the Accused Division (ACAD). This assignment is anticipated to last up to ten (10) weeks with the possibility of being extended or ending early based on business needs. Special duty assignments are available to current A Government Entity employees who have successfully completed their initial probation period.

The successful applicants will have a passion for public defense and for representing clients, focusing on their objectives, interests, and dignity. They will be committed to fighting institutional and structural racism and willing to address issues related to equity and social justice within the workplace and the broader work of public defense. They will have a demonstrated ability to supervise the work of other lawyers and support staff and to mentor, develop, evaluate, and support employees in a fast-paced environment.

Candidates should be fully knowledgeable of court procedures and the law; have considerable trial experience; possess excellent writing, research, and analytic skills, and have expertise in case preparation, handling, and disposition. In many instances, attorney supervisors will carry a partial caseload.

Levels of responsibility will range from supervising entry-level attorneys to those who are highly experienced. The supervisor will ensure that caseload standards that foster excellence in legal representation are observed in accordance with Washington State Bar Association guidelines. Supervising attorneys will have a demonstrated commitment to clients, the Division, and DPD. The successful applicant will have an aptitude for management and leadership and will be able to work within a team of managers.

Job Duties:
  • Supervise attorneys.
  • Develop, evaluate, train, mentor, and coach unit employees, and interns.
  • Ensure work conforms with prevailing professional standards, applicable statues, rules, and DPD and county policies.
  • In consultation and coordination with the ACA Managing Attorney, the Director's Office, and Human Resource staff, conduct disciplinary investigations and impose discipline, when appropriate.
  • Implement and monitor corrective and career development action plans and provide support to enable employees to make positive changes.
  • Conduct performance evaluations of unit employees, at least annually, and as required for probationary periods, TLTs, and interns.
  • Assign and balance workload among attorneys within unit. Assign and monitor workload of paralegal(s).
  • Ensure unit employees are up to date on DPD policies and developments, relevant legislative proposals or enactments and administrative and case law changes that bear on the practice area.
  • Act as a catalyst for problem-solving and conflict resolution within the unit and the Division.
  • Carry a partial caseload, requiring excellent legal representation and trial skills, excellent rapport with clients, strong legal research, strong negotiation skills and all necessary skills required of a caseload-carrying attorney.
  • Maintain and update, as needed, a computerized case-management system to track caseloads and individual assignments. Have a working knowledge of the case
  • management system and learn to utilize reports to evaluate and support the work of the unit.
  • Identify cases that present an ethical conflict of interest for the Division and/or Department of Public Defense.
  • Work with Director's Office to ensure unit employees have the training and resources they need to do their jobs well.
  • Actively support and promote DPD's mission and all policies and practices, including internal and external activities that strengthen public defense in A Government Entity.
  • Serve at least twice a year on call and supervise the on-call attorneys.
  • Be an active member of the Division Management Team, attend meetings, relay necessary information, and assist with office-wide initiatives and operations matters.
  • Work closely with all supervisors to coordinate overlapping work and support the efficient operation of the division.
  • Set a positive and supportive tone in the Division.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Experience, Qualifications, Knowledge, Skills:
  • Ability to train, supervise, evaluate, mentor, and improve the work of attorneys and professional legal and support staff.
  • Demonstrated ability to supervise other attorneys, including establishing goals and assigning responsibilities, communicating work performance standards, establishing work priorities, evaluating, and disciplining.
  • Demonstrated ability to assess and make program changes and address and resolve safety, training, and personnel issues.
  • Ability to learn and apply procedures and policies issued by human resources, DPD, and County procedures and policies.
  • Ability to manage a work unit, creating systems that allow for workflow to be predictable and staff to be supported to complete the necessary work.
  • Knowledge of application of legal principles to individual cases or problems.
  • Knowledge of judicial and trial procedures and rules of evidence.
  • Knowledge of the principles, methods, and practices of legal research and investigation.
  • Skill in understanding and interpreting complex laws and regulations and analyzing complex legal documents and instruments.
  • Skill in the ability to present facts, evidence, and precedents concerned in complex cases in the form of briefs, opinions, orders, or decisions.
  • Skill in understanding and interpreting constitutional provisions, statutes, administrative regulations, and precedents.
  • Skill in researching, interpreting, applying, and explaining applicable laws, codes, regulations, and court decisions.
  • Knowledge of community resources and referral agencies appropriate to the specific program service.
  • Knowledge of computer applications, particularly as related to the performance of legal research and case management.
  • Knowledge of case management.
  • Skill in working and building rapport with diverse cultural, socio-economic, and ethnic populations.
  • Ability to build a strong attorney/client relationship.
  • Ability to communicate and work collaboratively with all segments of judicial and criminal justice systems.
  • Ability to investigate and document complaints and improve client relations.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, and an ability to communicate clearly, professionally, and with empathy.
  • A demonstrated commitment to the clients of DPD.

Education and Experience Requirements:
  • Juris Doctor degree from accredited law school.
  • Possess experience necessary to qualify under current Supreme Court Standards to handle all level of Juvenile Offenses.
  • Licensing, Certification and Other Requirements
  • Member of the Washington State Bar Association in good standing and have been a lawyer for at least three years.
  • Washington State Driver's License or ability to travel to required destinations.