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Executive Director


Oregon Law Center (OLC) seeks an Executive Director to lead and advance the mission of this highly regarded statewide nonprofit civil legal aid organization.

Oregon Law Center seeks an Executive Director

The mission of OLC is to achieve justice for the low-income communities of Oregon by providing a full range of the highest quality civil legal services. In doing so it advances the core values of responsibility to the low-income client community; the right of clients to control decisions about the solutions pursued for their problems; the redress of historic inadequacies in the enforcement of legal rights of poor people; responsiveness to need rather than demand; and access to a full range of services and advocacy tools across the state.

With an annual budget of $13.4 million, OLC operates eleven offices around the state, with 107 staff members, including 65 attorneys. The statewide administrative office is in Portland. OLC is governed by an eighteen-person Board of Directors, composed of attorneys and client-eligible community members appointed by key players in the community, including the Oregon State Bar and local bar associations.
OLC receives funding from legislative allocation, interest on attorney trust accounts, grants from foundations, contracts, and attorney fees paid by other parties.  OLC does not receive funding from the federal Legal Services Corporation.

OLC has a litigation support unit, legislative advocacy unit, and statewide farmworker program. OLC works closely with Legal Aid Services of Oregon and other partners in Oregon’s statewide civil legal aid delivery system. OLC represents clients in urban and rural communities.  OLC’s legislative priorities and legal service delivery priorities are set by the Board of Directors and guided by client community-based priority-setting processes.

OLC provides services in the areas of administrative law, including health care, unemployment insurance, food stamps, the Jobs program, public benefits, Social Security and child support; employment law, including wage claims, discrimination claims, family leave, working conditions and safety; family law, including domestic violence; farmworker law, including wage claims, working conditions, housing and health care; the Indigenous Project  and its Project Against Workplace Sexual Assault; housing law including fair housing, government subsidized housing, landlord tenant law and issues related to homelessness; and civil rights issues, including race discrimination, immigrants’ rights, education issues and fines-and-fees maters.

OLC provides a full range of civil legal services, including: community outreach and education; legal information and referral; brief service from a lawyer in the form of advice or limited action; full representation in a case through the legal process; systemic impact cases that benefit many individuals beyond the individual client; and advocacy for clients’ interests in local and regional policy-making bodies, state administrative agencies, and the state legislature.

The successful candidate will join an organization with top-notch staff, including a strong central management team, an engaged Board, deep support within the Oregon State Bar and Oregon State Judiciary, stable financing, as well as excellent relations with state and local governmental and non-governmental organizations thereby maximizing the effectiveness of OLC. OLC staff are diverse, collegial and talented professionals, resolute in their commitment to OLC’s mission and to an inclusive and respectful workplace in which differences are acknowledged and valued.  The Board is committed to helping the newly-hired candidate marshal the administrative and executive support required to be successful in this challenging but deeply rewarding position. 


Minimum Requirements:  To be eligible, the candidate must have a JD and a license to practice law in Oregon, or commit to join the Oregon State Bar within a reasonable time.  Candidates must also have exhibited an enduring commitment to justice for low-income clients. 

Preferred Qualifications:  In addition, OLC prefers a candidate with the best possible mix of experience and the demonstrated capacity to add to the candidate’s skills once hired with respect to the following fundamental characteristics, skills, capabilities, and expectations: 

• Continuously exhibits passionate mission-centric leadership.

• Committed to reinforcing and deepening OLC’s emphasis on helping clients whose pursuit of justice is impaired by racism, poverty, or discriminatory practices.

• Committed to reinforcing and deepening OLC’s emphasis on creating the respectful, inclusive, and diverse workplace that is best suited to provide service to all of OLC’s clients.

• Aptitude for managing a complex budget in an organization fueled by multiple funding sources. 

• Effectively and respectfully engaging OLC’s essential partners and collaborators, including clients and low-income communities, Legal Aid Services of Oregon, the Campaign for Equal Justice, funders such as the Oregon State Legislature and public interest grantors, and the members and leadership of the Oregon Law Center Workers Union.  

• Broad experience in the practice of law, experience with a range of lawyering skills, and knowledge of poverty law across substantive areas.

• Experience managing and supervising the employees of a large organization delivering legal services to clients.

• Consistently exhibits professionalism, integrity, hard work, respect, empathy, humor, intellectual agility, creativity, and calmness

To Apply: 

For full consideration, applicants must submit application materials on or before April 10, 2024. Submit a letter expressing your interest in the position and your qualifications for the job with reference to each of the specifics described above.  Please include any additional information that you feel demonstrates your suitability for the position. Include your resume and the names and contact information for three professional references.

OLC is assisted in its search for an Executive Director by Patricia Pap, Consultant, Management Information Exchange, 508-737-4010, Your submission must be made electronically to in Microsoft Word or PDF format. Candidates with questions about the position, listed qualifications, or the search process are encouraged to contact her.

At the discretion of the Board’s Search Committee, some candidates who submit letters of interest may not be interviewed.  The Board’s Search Committee plans to conduct a first round of interviews, by zoom, on April 23 and 26.  A second round of interviews will be conducted, in person in Portland, on May 3.  The full Board will thereafter make the final decision.

OLC is an equal opportunity employer committed to creating an inclusive organization and a healthy work environment for all staff.  We strongly encourage people from diverse backgrounds and communities to apply for this job.  Many of our employees come from backgrounds that have not always been represented in the legal field or have not been socially or economically privileged.   Provided that you meet the Minimum Requirements, we hope you will consider applying even if you don’t believe you currently meet every one of the Preferred Qualifications.

Salary depends on experience based on a competitive public interest salary scale. The expected range is
$125,000 to $150,000. The benefits package includes individual and family health, vision and dental insurance coverage, employer retirement contribution, generous paid holidays, vacation, and sick leave, paid moving expenses and bar study leave, among others, as well as the pleasure of joining a team committed to achieving justice for the low-income communities of Oregon by providing a full range of the highest quality civil legal services.

For more information about OLC, visit


Submission Deadline: 
April 10, 2024
Organization Information: 
Oregon Law Center Portland, OR
United States