Thurgood Marshall Fellow (Racial Justice Attorney)
FLSA: Full-Time, Exempt
Reports to: Senior Staff Attorney, Racial Justice
Duration: Two years, with possible extension
Location: Currently remote, with San Francisco office open as an option. Hybrid remote/office likely in future.
Are you a newly-minted civil rights attorney looking for cutting-edge direct services and impact litigation work? If so, we invite you to consider joining our team at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area (LCCRSF). At LCCRSF, we run an integrated advocacy team where we build campaigns that combine direct services, impact litigation, and political advocacy to protect and promote civil rights. Our civil rights work seeks to build power for communities of color, low-income people, immigrants, and refugees in the Bay Area and throughout California.
More About You
We are searching for a creative and compassionate attorney, skilled in or ambitious about movement lawyering, to join our Racial Justice team as the Thurgood Marshall Civil Rights Fellow. Since the 1990s, this prestigious fellowship has been a launching pad for esteemed civil rights lawyers. It is designed for an attorney who has practiced law for at least two years and has a demonstrated commitment to civil rights law.
We are searching for candidates who are committed to dismantling inequities in our society. A strong candidate will be able to take ownership over their projects and assignments, value healthy collaborative dynamics, and are eager to help shape the strategic vision for our team. This is an opportunity to build upon burgeoning litigation and advocacy skills with an enthusiastic team, a team with an ambitious vision for the future of our society.
The ideal candidate will also be able to demonstrate their commitment to movement lawyering through strong relationships and history with the communities we serve or with specific experience in organizing and movement work.
As one of the most enduring civil rights institutions on the West Coast, LCCRSF works to dismantle systems of oppression and racism and to build an equitable and just society. Formed in 1968 to bridge the legal community and the Civil Rights Movement, we’re known for advancing the rights of people of color, immigrants, refugees and low-income individuals. We also invest in legal fellows and support a network of over 1,000 active pro bono attorneys who work in solidarity with us.
Our goal is to make this work sustainable, to take care of each other and our communities, and to rest so we can be fierce in the face of power through our core issue areas of Racial Justice, Immigrant Justice, Economic Justice, and Educational Justice. Learn more at www.lccrsf.org.
- Impact Litigation
You will join our impact litigators in bringing large-scale civil rights actions against state and municipal governments for a wide array of constitutional and civil rights violations committed against low-income communities of color—with the goal of making lasting change in California. Your work will include brief-craft, gathering evidence and working with clients, managing discovery and taking depositions, negotiating with opposing counsel, and researching and writing to support our team’s litigation goals.
- Advocacy Design
You will be encouraged to think creatively and strategically about how to best serve the goals of your clients and the communities who will be impacted by your legal advocacy. This may include becoming familiar with the ways in which organizing tactics, media advocacy, lobbying efforts, and coalition-building may be paired with direct services and impact litigation. This will certainly include building and nurturing relationships with directly impacted communities and community-led organizations.
- Managing a Direct Services Caseload
Though our direct services docket is small, it informs our litigation and advocacy deeply. You will help lead direct service clinics and supervise pro bono attorneys and law clerks providing direct services to individuals in our various clinics focused on assisting victims of police violence, unhoused people, and families who experience wealth stripping by government institutions and the bail bonds industry. You will also take on your own direct services cases as needed in our different program areas.
Salary, Benefits, Work location
This position is full-time, exempt, with an annual salary of $80,000, and reports to the Racial Justice Senior Staff Attorney. Full benefits package includes 100% paid medical + 80% for dependents, 403b retirement with employer match after one year, and more. Generous time off: 3 weeks’ vacation, 12 days of sick time, personal day, Summer Short Fridays and one week Winter Break.
Our office is located on the Embarcadero in downtown San Francisco, close to many transit options. We’re currently remote with our office available for optional use. We do not yet have a target date for return to the office, but we expect to offer at minimum part-time remote. While remote, employees may not work outside CA for more than 30 consecutive days at a time. Employees must be fully vaccinated for in-person work.
General working hours are 9am-5pm M-F. LCCRSF is woman- and minority-led, with about 30 staff. We are flexible, family-friendly, and value health, wellness and balance. We follow ADA guidelines – reasonable accommodation may be made to enable individuals with different abilities to perform the essential functions
Minimum Qualifications or Equivalent Experience
- A minimum of two years postgraduate legal experience (this may include judicial clerkship(s))
- Bar membership (membership in California Bar strongly preferred)
- Knowledge of and demonstrated interest in civil rights law
- Excellent oral and written communication skills
- Demonstrated success in building and maintaining relationships with people from a variety of backgrounds
- Solution-oriented mindset, including the ability to work independently and on a team, and demonstrated willingness to take initiative while juggling several priorities
- Connection to low-income communities of color and/or immigrant communities, ideally in the San Francisco Bay Area
- Strong project and time management skills, including demonstrated capacity to manage and prioritize competing projects
- Proficiency in a foreign language (particularly Spanish, Cantonese, or Mandarin) is desired but not required
Job is open until filled and applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Applicants should submit 1) a thoughtful cover letter; 2) a resume; and, 4) three professional references by email to email@example.com (put “Thurgood Marshall Fellow” in the subject line.) Questions can also go to that email.
In your cover letter, in addition to describing your interest in the position and qualifications, please respond to the following question: What in your background and experience has prepared you to work for an organization dedicated to advancing racial equity and justice? Feel free to think broadly about your response, applying professional or personal experiences.
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area thrives as an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer. BIPOC, LGBTQ+ candidates, people of all gender identities, persons with disabilities and individuals over 55 are encouraged to apply.