Legal Services Director
About Atlas: DIY, Developing Immigrant Youth
Atlas’s mission is to work with immigrant youth, regardless of their immigration status, to unlock access to legal services, educational opportunities, and leadership development. Founded in 2012, Atlas has grown into an internationally recognized award-winning organization with a membership of over 1,000 immigrant youth between the ages of 14 and 24. Atlas believes amplifying the leadership of young people is a tool for community transformation. To that end, Atlas works cooperatively with immigrant youth to create holistic programming and ensure that its members become active agents of change, in their own lives and their communities.
The Legal Services Director is a vital member of the Atlas staff who is responsible for ensuring that the organization’s legal team provides the highest quality of legal and informational services to the communities it supports. The Director will handle the development and supervision of all of Atlas’s legal programs, including 1) direct immigration legal representation and 2) pro se community immigration clinics, as well as any future legal programs and program expansions. The Director will provide supportive leadership to a team of attorneys, legal fellows, and interns (including students and youth members), and will also provide legal representation to their own Atlas clients. The Director will coordinate effectively with Atlas’s education, advocacy, and outreach staff, and work closely in partnership with Atlas’s Executive Director to grow, shape, and develop a long-term vision for Atlas’s legal service success.
Duties and Responsibilities
Leadership: The ideal candidate will demonstrate a commitment to the organization’s mission, an understanding of its culture, exemplary skills in internal and external collaboration, and a strong vision for furthering the organization’s outreach and goals. They will:
- Model an understanding of and commitment to Atlas’s core mission to advocate for immigrant rights, with a strong belief in the agency and capacity of young people to be leaders and changemakers.
- Work with other staff to create and continually represent a unified organizational leadership perspective.
- Create and maintain effective and fruitful relationships with community partners, elected officials, media, and other organizations.
- Work toward maintaining a results-oriented, learning-centric culture for Atlas clients to increase the organization’s overall impact; demonstrate a commitment for social justice, advancing equity; and practicing access lawyering alongside community members.
- Approach the position with an eye to the future and a commitment to building a legal department focused on finding solutions to the challenges facing Atlas members.
Program Oversight: The Director will oversee and supervise the overall development of all legal services provided by Atlas. They will:
- Provide direct legal representation to immigrant youth (ages 14 to 24) and their derivatives in cases including removal defense, affirmative and defensive asylum, special immigrant juvenile status (SIJS), family petitions, naturalization, VAWA self-petitions, petitions for U and T nonimmigrant status, and other related situations.
- Ensure that Atlas practices culturally conscious and client-centered lawyering and that all attorneys and staff members seek to help our clients understand their cases and the relevant legal procedures they must navigate.
- Provide supportive mentoring, coaching, training and supervision to a growing and passionate legal team; coordinate the training needs of all staff for internal development and to maintain accredited status for DOJ representatives and comply with attorneys’ continuing legal education requirements.
- Actively support, advise, and participate in Atlas’s work in community engagement, advocacy, education, and youth development; this includes but is not limited to supporting community Know-Your-Rights presentations and member legal education programs.
Financial and Administrative Duties: The Director has major financial and administrative responsibilities that contribute to the success of the legal program and the impact of the overall organization. They will:
- Work with the Executive Director on the program’s annual budget, developing a deep understanding of the program’s funding sources and requirements.
- Ensure appropriate grant (and other) reporting, and contract deliverables are met in a timely and complete manner.
- Supervise the legal team and ensure all staff members are appropriately and properly entering case opening and closing data and maintaining consistent, confidential client files.
Fundraising, Grant Management, and Reporting: The Director plays a key role in the development of grant opportunities to support Atlas’s legal programs in alignment with the strategic goals of the organization. They will:
- Work in collaboration with the Executive Director to help identify possible funders, cultivate and maintain relationships with new and existing funders, and help in the preparation of grant proposals, establishing goals and projections and preparing budgets.
- Assist with report preparation; prepare and submit data for program reports on organizational goals and grant deliverables, acting as liaison for contract administrators and ensuring that the required levels of service are maintained.
Policy, Advocacy, and Community Development: The Director serves as a major representative of Atlas to both the members it serves and to the wider community. Working within approved organizational guidelines, they will:
- Advocate for the fair and equitable treatment of immigrants in the public arena.
- Represent and speak for Atlas in the local and national press to demonstrate subject matter expertise around issues of immigration policy.
- Promote the dignity of immigrants and their contributions to society to help counter anti-immigrant sentiments.
- Build and maintain community partner relationships to expand community outreach.
- Continuously evaluate emerging needs in the community and help develop programs and policies to aid underserved communities.
- Juris Doctorate from an accredited law school; Admission to the New York State Bar.
3+ years of direct experience:
- in immigration law, assisting immigrants with U-Visas, SIJS, VAWA self-petitions, family petitions, naturalization, and other related cases.
- in a supervisory role, providing administrative and management support in a professional office environment.
- Experience providing legal services in other subject areas a plus.
- Experience serving clients from many different cultures.
- Experience working with social services, juvenile services, domestic violence cases, or another related field a plus.
- Excellent writing, legal writing, litigation, and advocacy skills.
- Bilingual fluency in English and Spanish or other second-language capabilities preferred.
This position is full-time and exempt. Atlas offers a competitive public interest salary (dependent on experience and qualifications) and an excellent benefits package including subsidized health, dental, and vision plans, generous time-off policies, and opportunities for professional advancement in a growing organization.
How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should submit a thoughtful cover letter, resume, and salary requirements to Jobs@atlasdiy.org. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and accepted until the position is filled.
Atlas: DIY is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will be afforded equal employment opportunities without discrimination. People of color; women and nonbinary individuals; people with disabilities; gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people; and people of all ages are welcome and encouraged to apply.