Active - Associate Attorney
Employment Type: Full-Time
Job Title: Associate Attorney
Department: Environmental Law Program
Reports to: Managing Attorney
Location: Oakland, CA
Duration: 2-year position, beginning September 2022
Context: At the Sierra Club, we are committed to the fight for a healthy climate built on a foundation of environmental, racial, economic, and gender justice - a future where all people benefit from a healthy, thriving planet and a direct connection to nature. As the climate crisis and deeply entrenched systemic racism all fuel inequity, we will continue to fight for a bold, transformational agenda that recognizes the interconnectedness between our planet, our humanity, and our democracy. By recognizing that our destinies are tied, we continue to name that all things are fundamentally connected, and the overlap between ecology, race, gender, and representative government will move to either advance our collective humanity or to oppress it.
Sierra Club is comprised of staff across the country and a network of local chapters that support our grassroots engagement. We are also proud to be a unionized employer, with two labor unions representing more than half of our employees.
Scope: The Sierra Club Environmental Law Program seeks an associate attorney to begin work at Sierra Club national headquarters in Oakland, California starting in September 2022. As part of the national Sierra Club's legal team, the associate attorney helps coordinate all aspects of the Sierra Club's legal work. Working with senior and staff attorneys, the associate attorney evaluates proposed environmental litigation and prepares formal written recommendations for the Sierra Club's decision makers; provides legal advice to Sierra Club chapters around the country; helps strategize and implement programmatic legal campaigns; and, during the associate's second year, participates as counsel in select litigation matters aimed at advancing the Sierra Club's national campaigns.
The Environmental Law Program primarily directs legal strategy for the Sierra Club's campaigns, including Beyond Coal, Beyond Dirty Fuels, and Our Wild America. We litigate cases and coordinate legal work among campaigns, state-level chapters, and partner coalitions.
Job activities include but are not limited to:
* Evaluate proposed environmental litigation so that national volunteer and staff leadership can decide whether the Sierra Club should participate.
* Oversee and maintain an overview of the Sierra Club's litigation docket; help resolve problems that arise in individual lawsuits.
* Provide support to chapters who wish to pursue legal tactics, such as assisting chapters in formulating legal strategies and objectives, securing effective, low or pro bono outside counsel, and ensuring that legal tactics are part of a well-integrated campaign strategy.
* Help to ensure that Sierra Club litigation furthers the principles of equity, inclusion, and justice, consistent with the Jemez Principles (see below), including through the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of clients, partners, and front-line community groups and individuals in a way that demonstrates humility, patience, and respect.
* Assist in litigating cases that seek to advance the goals of the national priority campaigns (see above) under the supervision and mentorship of senior and staff attorneys during the associate's second year.
The successful candidate must have the following skills and experience:
* Law school graduate by September 2022 admitted to or willing to apply for admission to the California Bar.
* 0-3 years of post-law school graduation experience.
* Excellent writing and analytical skills.
* Strong interpersonal and consensus building skills, including the ability to work collaboratively with clients and colleagues from a variety of backgrounds.
* Passion for the Sierra Club's mission to protect and restore the quality of the natural and human environment.
* Demonstrated commitment to furthering equity, inclusion, and justice, both internally and externally.
* Knowledge of environmental law (preferred).
In 2015, the Sierra Club formalized its vision for an internal transformation to become a more equitable and inclusive organization. The Sierra Club has also adopted the Jemez Principles, a set of guidelines designed to help people from different cultures, communities, politics, and organizations work together in solidarity. The Environmental Law Program strives to conduct litigation in accordance with the Jemez Principles and in furtherance of Sierra Club's vision of becoming a more equitable and inclusive organization. For more information about our commitment to equity, inclusion, and justice, please visit: sierraclub.org/equity.
Compensation and Benefits
The salary range for this position is $85,698 - $106,708.
The Sierra Club offers a competitive salary package commensurate with skills and experience plus excellent benefits that include medical, dental, and vision coverage, and a retirement savings 401(k) plan.
This is a category 5 exempt, non-represented professional position.
Sierra Club is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization. Sierra Club employees are not eligible to participate in the Federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program.
Sierra Club values the expertise and talents of foreign nationals. Sierra Club sponsors both nonimmigrant and immigrant visas when certain criteria are met, based on immigration laws and organizational needs. Such sponsorship is at the discretion of the Department Head and Sierra Club Human Resources in consultation with the employee's manager. The Sierra Club cannot guarantee the approval of a visa petition.
Explore, enjoy and protect the planet.
Please remove your schools from your resume. You may leave your degree (e.g., 'B.A. Philosophy'), but please remove any undergraduate, graduate and law school names.
This anonymous process is aimed at opening this opportunity to more candidates, reviewing applicants on performance assessments and mitigating bias in the decision making process.
Lastly, we are intentionally not asking for a cover letter, so please do not send one in with your application.
We are accepting applications until October 1, 2021, and we hope to complete the hiring process soon thereafter.