Closing Date: 1st March, 2023

Description:

Public Justice is seeking to hire a litigator with at least eight years of relevant experience for a Senior Attorney position in our Food Project. Public Justice is a public interest legal advocacy organization that takes on the biggest systemic threats to justice of our time—abusive corporate power and predatory practices, the assault on civil rights and liberties, and the destruction of the earth’s sustainability. We connect high impact litigation with strategic communications and the strength of our partnerships to fight these abusive and discriminatory systems and win social and economic justice.

The Food Project at Public Justice works to dismantle the current corporate-controlled exploitative food system and support a movement to achieve our vision of a food system that is both sustainable and equitable. We take a multifaceted approach to build power and achieve a just, humane, and sustainable animal agriculture system wherein litigation is one tactic in a larger effort for social change. In our lawsuits, we partner with and represent farmers, workers, rural communities, consumers, and advocates who share our vision. In our advocacy, we amplify their voices and spread awareness of the systemic inequities that have allowed this corporate takeover of our food system and show policymakers and the public how they can support a return to farming focused on sustaining communities rather than extracting profit.

The Food Project Senior Attorney will work across legal areas to lead and develop new cutting-edge legal theories to hold corporations and the government accountable for their abuse. The attorney should be prepared to develop new legal theories in areas such as worker justice, consumer rights, and/or environmental law and think holistically about how to reform food industries. The ideal candidate will be an experienced, top-notch litigator with experience organizing or working closely with organizers.

The Senior Attorney will report to the Food Project Litigation Director and work closely with the Food Project Organizing Director and other Food Project staff. The attorney will also work collaboratively with Public Justice’s other attorneys, outside lawyers who support Public Justice’s work, and other public interest groups to further the Project’s goals.

Our preference is for this position to be based in our Washington D.C. office, but we will consider applications from especially qualified candidates seeking to work remotely from other parts of the country. Because Public Justice handles litigation, education, and advocacy nationally, the position will entail some travel.

Responsibilities:
  • Develop new cases aligned with the Food Project’s Strategic Plan; conduct factual investigations; develop legal theories; draft pleadings and briefs; and otherwise manage new and existing cases within state and federal courts and administrative agencies.
  • Litigate cases from beginning to end, performing all aspects of litigation.
  • Support the Organizing Director and Litigation Director by integrating litigation into integrated advocacy initiatives, campaigns, and strategies with our partners.
  • Develop and engage in legal advocacy outside of court based on the ways in which the litigation intersects with policymaking and base building, including drafting and reviewing legislation; drafting rulemaking petitions, comments to agencies, letters, fact sheets and other materials; and participating in coalition meetings and events.
  • Actively engage in outreach and participate in coalitions and collaborative networks to build relationships and support
  • Supervise the work of Staff Attorneys, Law Fellows, and Law Clerks throughout the organization. Play an integral role in developing less experienced attorneys.
  • Help manage our case intake process and provide potential clients with resources.
  • Help build and train attorneys in the Food Project Network, a network of private attorneys who are challenging corporate misconduct in industrial animal agriculture, including developing materials designed to educate members of the public and the bar.
  • Other advocacy work to further the priorities of the Food Project at Public Justice.

Qualifications:
  • Law degree and at least eight years of litigation experience. For the purposes of determining litigation experience, we will include clerkships and fellowships;
  • Admission to a State Bar;
  • Excellent litigation skills, including proven legal research, writing, analytical, and oral advocacy skills, and ability to manage a litigation docket effectively;
  • Strong skills in communicating litigation and advocacy goals and messages to the media and public;
  • Ability to work independently and in collaboration with client partners and in leading a team;
  • Strong and demonstrated initiative, good judgment, creativity, and work ethic;
  • Ability and willingness to travel as needed for case work, court appearances, and presentations;
  • Commitment to serving the public interest, and a passion for the role of Public Justice and its mission;
  • Sensitivity to the needs and concerns of and the ability to work with individuals and groups from diverse cultures, backgrounds, and orientations.
  • Contributes to the creation of a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work community that encourages collaboration.
  • A strong desire to build a movement to achieve a more just food system.

We offer a mission-focused work environment, a teamwork and community-oriented approach, and a competitive compensation package. We recognize and support healthy work-life balance policies, including operating on a four-day work week all-year round. We also offer a generous benefits package, including three weeks of paid vacation, two weeks of sick leave, and two personal days each year, all federal and some local holidays, employer-paid health, dental and vision insurance premiums, and a 401(k) plan. Our attorneys are paid on a salary scale based on years out of law school. The annual salary range for this position is likely $94,00-$107,500. Public Justice requires those working in its offices to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Reasonable accommodations to this requirement, including remote work, based on disability or a sincerely held religious belief will be considered.

Public Justice EEO Statement
Public Justice is an equal opportunity employer and values a diverse workplace. We strongly encourage applications from people with disabilities; people of color, including bilingual and bicultural individuals; LGBTQ+ individuals; people of all genders; veterans; and people of all ages. Public Justice is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to individuals with disabilities. If you require reasonable accommodations during any part of the hiring process, please email lhughes@publicjustice.net.

Background Check Policy
As an organization dedicated to protecting the rights of workers, Public Justice takes our duty to respect and honor the dignity of every employee seriously and balances this commitment with our responsibility to ensure a safe working environment for our team. As part of both these commitments, we will ask potential employees who have received a conditional offer of employment to consent to a narrowly tailored background check process. This process is limited only to specific inquiries regarding convictions related to financial fraud and violent crimes. We do not request, review or consider any information related to other matters, including consumer credit checks, non-violent drug offenses, sex work, or other past convictions with no history of violence, nor do we condone or participate in “dead naming” transgender applicants as part of this process. Public Justice strongly supports equal employment opportunities for all qualified applicants regardless of any past history unrelated to job performance or skills.

Questions about our background check process should be addressed to Leroy Hughes, VP of Operations, by email at lhughes@publicjustice.net.