Senior Counsel - New Jersey Institute for Social Justice

24 Jan 2017 4:58 PM | Anonymous

The New Jersey Institute for Social Justice (the “Institute”) is looking for a sophisticated, dynamic team player to serve as our Senior Counsel to manage and implement a program of strategic legal and policy advocacy to expand racial and social justice in New Jersey. The Senior Counsel will report directly to the Institute’s President-CEO. The position, housed in Newark, New Jersey, will require travel throughout the state.

This is an exciting opportunity, at a critical time in our history, to advance racial and social justice on behalf of New Jersey’s urban communities in the Institute’s three programmatic areas: 

(1) economic mobility; (2) criminal justice reform; and (3) civic engagement. Using a holistic approach to address the unique and critical issues facing New Jersey’s urban communities, the Institute advocates for systemic reform that is at once transformative, achievable in the state, and replicable in communities across the nation.


  •  Work in partnership with the President and CEO to implement the Institute’s strategic vision for legal programs, set goals, monitor progress, and evaluate outcomes to ensure that the Institute’s objectives are met and in line with the needs and mission of the organization.
  •  Help execute programmatic functions, supervise, and monitor implementation of the Institute’s strategic vision for legal programs, including the integration of litigation, legislative initiatives, policy goals, public education, and targeted campaigns.
  •  Engage in public speaking and participate in public education activities to articulate the Institute’s views on a broad range of issues to the public and various stakeholder constituencies.
  •  Build strategic alliances with organizations and individuals to advance the Institute’s mission, engage on shared priorities, and exchange knowledge and information in support of the Institute’s programs and initiatives.
  •  Work closely with and help support legal staff members to execute the Institute’s strategic vision for the legal programs.
  •  Meet regularly with and receive regular updates from the Chief Operating Officer and staff team to stay abreast of the organization’s operations and progress.
  •  Attend management team meetings.
  •  Collaborate with and assist the Chief Operating Officer and the staff team in advancing the Institute’s media and fundraising priorities.
  •  Edit and provide legal review for Institute’s policies, procedures, communications, and publications.
  •  Write and edit legal and policy briefs, as well as program descriptions, in furtherance of program goals and funder communications.
  •  Maintain relationships with Institute’s partners, including other legal service agencies, law firms, the cooperating attorney network, and law students.
  •  Assist the President and CEO and senior management team in fostering internal collaboration, creating professional growth opportunities at the Institute, and promoting a work environment that encourages independent judgment and values self-starters.
  •  Work with the communications team to integrate policy and legal advocacy with communications, including through public education materials, policy reports, white papers, talking points, op-eds, and press releases.
  •  Work with the President-CEO and COO to assist with funding opportunities, as needed.
  •  Develop and manage special projects and initiatives, including litigation, when appropriate.
  •  Model values of an inclusive and respectful workplace and foster the same in the staff.



  •  Law degree and minimum of ten years of experience as a practicing attorney.
  •  Ability to work effectively with diverse coalitions and community groups,
  • particularly of color, and to work across political ideology, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic circumstances, religion, gender, sexual orientation, and religion.
  •  Passion for, and knowledge of, racial and social justice, and a familiarity with the work and mission of the Institute.
  •  Experience supervising staff and leading teams.
  •  Ability to listen, coach, shepherd, and support people to achieve shared goals.
  •  Excellent research and writing skills; superior attention to detail; ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously; good problem-solving skills and a positive, professional attitude with excellent judgment, flexibility, determination, and grace in a sometimes high-pressure office.
  •  Criminal justice background preferred.
  •  Integrity, honesty and a balanced, non-partisan approach.
  •  Exceptional written and oral communications skills.


This is a full-time, at-will position. Salary is commensurate with experience and includes excellent benefits, including health, a 401(k) plan with an employer contribution, and generous vacation, sick, and holiday leave.


Applications will be reviewed beginning the week of December 19, 2016, and will be accepted until the position is filled. Please email your cover letter, resume, professional writing sample on which you are the primary author, and three professional references to Please submit your application materials via Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF. Include all attachments in a single email stating, in the subject line, “Senior Counsel.”

About the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice:

The Institute is an equal opportunity employer and values a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture.

The Institute’s mission is to empower urban residents to realize and achieve their full potential. Established in 1999 by Alan V. and Amy Lowenstein, the Institute’s dynamic and independent advocacy is aimed at toppling load-bearing walls of structural inequality to create just, vibrant, and healthy urban communities. We employ a broad range of advocacy tools to advance our ambitious urban agenda, including research, analysis and writing, public education, grassroots organizing, communications, the development of pilot programs, legislative strategies, and litigation.

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