Thurgood Marshall Civil Rights Fellowship

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The Thurgood Marshall Civil Rights fellowship for attorneys is a signature endeavor of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area, which lasts for a two-year term, with possible extension. The Lawyers’ Committee views the causes we champion as broadly related to positions and ethical stances taken by Justice Thurgood Marshall during his distinguished legal career. This fellowship is designed for an attorney who has practiced for at least two years and has a demonstrated commitment to civil rights law. It is our hope that the fellowship will enhance the Fellow’s understanding of civil rights law and prepare the Fellow for a career of promoting social justice.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

FLSA Status

Full-Time, Exempt

Reports to                                                                                          Salary

Senior Litigation Attorney                                                              $65,000/year

Duration of Fellowship

Fellowship is available for a two-year term from October 2019 through October 2021, with possibility of extension.

General Summary of Work Performed

The Thurgood Marshall Fellow is an integral part of LCCR’s commitment to cutting-edge civil rights work. At a historic time of need and possibility, the Fellow will primarily assist with our impact litigation, policy advocacy, and direct services work in the area of racial justice, including advocacy related to bail reform, discriminatory policing, debtors’ prison/fines and fees, and constitutional challenges to state civil seizures including towing and personal belongings. The Fellow may also have the opportunity to work on projects in the area of immigrant justice.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities


  • Assist with impact litigation on our civil rights docket, including investigation and fact development, legal research, drafting and reviewing filings and correspondence, discovery, motion practice, trial advocacy, and appellate advocacy.
  • Provide direct services through LCCR’s legal clinics, to benefit low-income clients and to identify broader issues for litigation and policy advocacy.
  • Work in coalition, attend task force and community meetings as appropriate, and obtain feedback from community stakeholders to ensure that LCCR’s advocacy is rooted in the experiences of people directly affected by injustice.
  • Engage in legislative and administrative advocacy, including drafting regulations and legislation, meeting with client organizations, representing groups before administrative and legislative bodies, and providing technical assistance to policy makers.
  • Seek opportunities to engage in public education and media advocacy consistent with our identified program strategies and in consultation with communications staff.
  • Assist as necessary with other organizational needs to further LCCR’s advocacy.

Knowledge, Skills, and 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 or immigrant communities 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


$65,000 annual salary plus a competitive benefits package, including medical, dental, vision, disability, bar dues, and other benefits.

To Apply

If you are ready to join a highly-motivated, hard-working and caring team working together alongside courageous clients to make a more just and equal world for all, we invite you to apply! Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Submit a cover letter, resume, and list of three references by email to (Subject Line: “Thurgood Marshall Fellowship Application”).

In your cover letter, please respond to the following question, or we may choose not to consider your application:

LCCR serves highly diverse communities. To ensure that we are best positioned to serve these communities, we strive to promote behaviors, attitudes and policies that help us work effectively in cross-cultural situations with clients, our coworkers, and our communities. We seek to create an inclusive and respectful workplace in which differences are acknowledged and valued. How have your background or experiences, professional or otherwise, prepared you to contribute to our commitment to cultural competency and racial equity? Feel free to think broadly about your response to this question, applying various aspects of your life and personal experiences.

Questions regarding this position may be submitted directly to our Legal Director, Elisa Della-Piana, at

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer. People of color, LGBTQ candidates, women, people with disabilities, people over 55, and people who have had contact with the criminal justice system are encouraged to apply.