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Senior Counsel, U.S. Litigation

Center for Reproductive Rights
Washington, DC
  • Posted: over a month ago
  • Full-Time
Job Description: Job Title: Senior Counsel, U.S. Litigation Department: U.S. Programs, U.S. Litigation Center Background: The Center for Reproductive Rights (the Center) is the global leader in using the power of law to advance reproductive rights as fundamental human rights. Headquartered in New York City, the non-profit, non-partisan organization has regional offices in Bogota, Geneva, Nairobi, and Washington, DC, and a staff of approximately 200 diverse professionals. The Center's compelling human rights mission and reputation for excellence and cutting-edge legal work has powered its exceptional growth trajectory to an operating budget of over $40 million and won the respect of the world's leading law firms, as reflected in the additional $29 million annually in donated legal services, representing the work last year of 820 lawyers in 46 countries. The overarching goal of the Center's new Strategic Plan sets a high mark for impact: By 2030, half of the world's population will be living under stronger protections for reproductive rights than they do today. The Center has a track record of success to back up this ambitious goal. Since its founding in 1992, the Center's game-changing litigation and advocacy, combined with its unparalleled expertise in constitutional, comparative, and international human rights law, have transformed how reproductive rights are understood by courts, governments, and human rights bodies worldwide on issues including maternal health, contraception, abortion, and assisted reproduction. It has won groundbreaking cases before national courts, U.N. Committees, and regional human rights bodies, led the development of historic, proactive legislation advancing robust protections for reproductive rights, and has built the legal capacity of women's rights advocates in more than 60 countries and counting. To learn more about the Center for Reproductive Rights, go to To learn more about our DEI Organizational Commitments, go here. The Role: The Center is seeking a seasoned litigator to serve as a Senior Counsel on the U.S. Litigation team. This position is a two-year, position, with possibility for extension. The person in this role will serve as a senior lawyer and thought partner to leadership on the litigation team and within U.S. Programs. This person will lead and support the development of innovative legal arguments and strategies, including the filing of new cases, supporting the litigation team's current docket, cultivating new clients, advising existing clients on a wide range of legal and compliance matters, and providing mentorship and supervision of staff. The expectation is that the Senior Counsel will be able to get up to speed quickly and manage multiple cases and supervise case teams. The position will require strategic vision and an ability to work across several units within the Center, including Pro Bono, Lawyers Network, Human Rights, State Policy and Advocacy teams, as well as with the Communications and Development departments. This position will be based in the Center's New York or Washington, D.C. office. Covid-19 vaccination is required for all US-based employees of the Center. Primary Responsibilities: Work with the Center's U.S. Litigation team to develop and litigate cases in federal and state courts on behalf of Center clients to defend and expand reproductive rightsDevelop and execute new cases and legal theories, including case strategy formation, consistent with Center-wide strategy and long-term litigation goalsEngage in all aspects of litigation (current and new filings), including acting as lead on multiple cases; cultivating and managing relationships with clients; collaborating with local counsel and pro bono co-counsel, other litigation partners, and other partners/stakeholders; and navigating state and coalition dynamics and relationshipsEngage in compliance work for the Center's clientsDevelop and maintain high-level of expertise in relevant subject mattersSupervise and mentor a team of three to four attorneys, including those acting as lead attorney on the Center's cases, as well as paralegals, including overseeing their career development and professional growthWork closely with Communications, Development, and the Office of the President to provide support and information as needed, including providing messaging guidance and handling press callsCollaborate and problem solve across departments and teams, including by closely coordinating with Judicial Strategy, Lawyers' Network, Human Rights, and Federal and State Policy Advocacy teams on amicus briefs, engaging state partners, and other Center-wide strategic projectsEffectively represent the Center at public events, conferences, coalition meetings, and meetings with donors and foundationsActively participate in program planning and case budgeting Qualifications: Admission to the New York or District of Columbia Bar Required (depending on location). If not currently admitted to the New York or District of Columbia Bar, candidate must be admitted to the bar of another state and agree to become admitted to the New York or District of Columbia Bar within eighteen monthsMinimum 12 years impact and strategic litigation experienceExcellent research, writing, and oral advocacy skillsOutstanding legal analysis skills, including the ability to analyze legislation and regulations, and develop complex legal arguments to respond to and improve legislation, administrative actions, and/or litigation strategy/arguments, consistent with roleInnovative and strategic thinking and approaches to litigation and advocacyExcellent organizational and time management skills including ability to self-motivate, handle multiple tasks simultaneously, ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines, and provide quick turnaround of assignments while collaborating in a teamStrong communication and public speaking skillsExcellent interpersonal skillsExcellent mentorship, sponsorship, people management and supervisory skillsAbility to find synergies and utilize problem-solving approaches with colleagues to support the goals of the litigation team, US Programs, and the CenterDemonstrated ability to litigate high-stakes, federal and/or state constitutional cases or federal anti-discrimination lawFamiliarity with Center's reproductive rights and justice issues and the work of its reproductive health, rights, and justice partners, preferredCriminal defense experience strongly preferredGood client hands – capacity to make clients feel a high level of engagementTrack record of recruiting and maintaining diverse staff within the organization and supporting a work environment and culture of inclusivity, positive engagement, and good communication at all levels of the organizationSpanish language fluency a plus Critical Competencies:Strategic thinking: Applies big-picture thinking while also focusing on the details of implementation.Decisiveness: Consistently makes sound decisions in a timely manner supportive of the Center's mission, core values, and strategic objectives. Blends vision and judgment.Collaboration: Brings a track record of working effectively with various and diverse individuals and groups, and a willingness to actively listen and invite different views and opinions across all levels of the institution to build alignment in support of a common goal.Receives and Provides Direct Feedback: Actively gives and requests feedback to and from peers, supervisors and direct reports (if applicable) about work products, behaviors, values, style and approaches with a view on how this impacts self, other individuals and teams.Transparency: Consistently applies openness and honesty in communicating decisions and plans to team members.Commitment to learn: Applies a growth mentality to their own and their team's (if applicable) development. Promotes a culture of learning by modeling inquisitiveness and an openness to viewing mistakes as an opportunity to learn and improve.Passion for Coaching, and Mentoring Staff: Empowers and motivates employees and creates opportunities for learning, development, and leadership, with a focus on harnessing skills for the future development of team members. (if applicable)Accountability: Follows through on each commitment made to individual contributors, teams and partners and proactively informs others of any delays that occur along the way. Holds team members accountable.Integrity: Possesses impeccable integrity and personal and professional values that are consistent with the Center's high standards and mission.Empathy: Serves as an empathetic, approachable leader who engenders trust and confidence. (if applicable)Adaptability/Flexibility: Demonstrates comfort with ambiguity and calculated risk. Compensation: The annual salary for this position begins at $139,000 benchmarked to our salary banding for Senior Counsel based on years of experience.. This salary is reflective of a position based in NYC or DC. This salary will be subject to a locality adjustment, if an authorization is granted to work outside of the location listed in this posting. Note that most of the salaries listed on our job postings reflect New York, NY salaries, where our National offices are headquartered. The Center covers up to 95% of the premium of a comprehensive health insurance plan with no deductible and best on the market ART/infertility coverage. The Center also contributes 7.5% of an employee's salary to a 401(k) account beginning after the first year of employment. The Center also supplies a generous PTO offering. How to Apply: Please complete the application below to apply. A cover letter and resume must be included in your application. Please include these application materials as attachments. Deadline for applications: Applications will be accepted until July 30th. Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible. To learn more about our DEI Organizational Commitments, go

Center for Reproductive Rights


Washington, DC



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