Project Director, Brooklyn Legal Services
The Project Director will report to and work closely with Raun J. Rasmussen, Executive Director of Legal Services NYC, and the Brooklyn Legal Services Board of Directors.
ABOUT THE ORGANIZATION
Legal Services NYC (LSNYC) fights poverty and seeks racial, social and economic justice for low- income New Yorkers. For 50 years they have challenged systemic injustice and helped clients meet basic needs for housing, income and economic security, family and immigration stability, education, and health care. LSNYC is the largest civil legal services provider in the country; their staff of more than 550 in neighborhood-based offices and outreach sites across all five boroughs helps more than 111,000 New Yorkers annually.
Brooklyn Legal Services (BLS), an office of LSNYC with an independent Board of Directors, provides high-quality civil legal services, advocacy, and social work support to low-income communities throughout Brooklyn. BLS’s staff of over 170 helps more than 27,000 individuals each year and reaches thousands more through outreach and community legal education. BLS advocates practice in many areas, including tenants’ rights and foreclosure, civil rights, family law, disability advocacy, immigration, and LGBTQ advocacy. BLS also works with clients and community partners to identify and challenge the systemic inequalities faced by low-income communities in Brooklyn and throughout New York City. BLS is the largest provider of free civil legal services in Brooklyn, serving one of the most diverse counties in New York State.
ABOUT THE OPPORTUNITY:
LSNYC seeks a highly accomplished and talented lawyer and manager to lead and oversee the day-to-day operations and activities of BLS. The Project Director will work in collaboration with citywide senior leadership, the staff, Board, and community partners to fight poverty and achieve racial, social and economic justice for low-income New Yorkers.
Leadership and Management:
Provide inspirational and motivational leadership to a diverse and highly skilled staff.
Ensure the delivery of high quality, high impact legal services to low-income individuals.
Oversee all supervision, long-range organizational planning, project and program development in partnership with program leaders, staff and external stakeholders.
Ensure the organization’s fiscal health, including overseeing and expanding the annual budget of $22M.
Maintain a strong and effective working relationship with staff (including the organization’s union, LSSA 2320, LSNYC leadership, the BLS Board of Directors, and external stakeholders, such as legislators, government agencies, courts and funders.
Oversee and promote the program’s diversity, race equity and cultural competence initiatives, including recruitment, hiring, training and professional development, as well as programmatic anti-racism and debiasing initiatives.
Further BLS’s mission through effective advocacy on issues affecting low-income New Yorkers.
Serve as an active member of the LSNYC citywide senior leadership team, which includes the executive leadership and Project Directors of other borough offices, and participate in citywide planning and initiatives affecting BLS and its sister programs.
Act as a visible and engaging spokesperson for BLS and LSNYC to strengthen and extend their public presence and serve as a leader in social justice movements by effectively representing and promoting BLS and LSNYC to public officials, community and media.
Develop and maintain active relationships with local, citywide and national partners to facilitate sharing of knowledge, strategies for action, and best practices.
Resource Development and Communications:
Create and implement a fundraising strategy, ensuring a diversified funding base including federal, state and local grants as well as foundations and individual donors.
Establish and maintain relationships with current and potential private funders and donors through cultivation, solicitation, and engagement.
Strengthen the organization’s relationship with federal, state and local officials, including advocacy to build funding for legal services.
Ensure the program’s compliance with grants awarded through public and private sources.
Develop and implement a communications strategy for BLS and its initiatives.
QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE:
The Project Director will be a seasoned leader, lawyer, advocate and manager. The successful candidate will bring a passion for the LSNYC mission, expertise in public interest law, and a deep belief in the power of community-based advocacy and related social justice movements.
Key Professional Experiences and Personal Attributes Include:
Significant understanding of, and experience with, providing legal and other services to low-income people and vulnerable populations, including experience developing and engaging in high impact litigation and advocacy.
Exceptional management and interpersonal skills with senior level leadership at a complex organization of similar size and scope.
A decisive, results-oriented leader with a highly collaborative and inclusive approach to management.
Ability to build, nurture, and retain a collaborative, diverse and inclusive team, including one with a unionized workforce, as well as empower staff through active and effective communication and opportunities for collaboration.
Ability to build excellent relationships with a diverse range of partners and supporters.
Experience and interest in fundraising and grant writing.
Exceptional communication, oral advocacy and writing skills with experience guiding internal and external messaging.
Passionate and proven commitment to expanding the diversity, equity and inclusivity of the workplace, and to social justice issues and the mission, purpose and future of BLS and LSNYC.
EDUCATION: Law degree from an American Bar Association accredited law school and member in good standing of the New York State Bar are required.
TRAVEL: Regular travel within the five boroughs; occasional travel outside New York City, including to Albany.
COMPENSATION: Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience.
LSNYC is an equal opportunity employer and an organization committed to race, gender and economic justice in our work and within our workplace. Staff are members of the LSSA/NOLSW UAW Local 2320. We welcome and encourage applications from candidates of color, women, people with disabilities, gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people.
Please email nomination or letter of interest, and resume in confidence to: