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Executive Director, Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs

Washington, DC

Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs
Washington, D.C.

About the Washington Lawyers’ Committee
The Washington Lawyers’ Committee (“the Committee”) has been on the front line of civil rights work for more than 50 years. We deploy the best legal talent to fight discrimination, repair the damage of historic racial inequity and break down barriers to opportunity. Through its active litigation docket of more than 100 matters, including individual cases, class actions, and larger institutional reform cases, and supplemented by its robust organizing, policy, and advocacy work, the Committee promotes fairness and equality in the areas of housing, education, employment, public accommodations, rights of those who are incarcerated, immigrant rights, and the criminal legal system.

Position Summary
The Committee is seeking a seasoned leader with a demonstrated commitment to civil rights and racial justice, a successful record leading diverse, talented teams, and a proven ability to solicit and secure philanthropic funding. The Executive Director will be responsible for ensuring a collaborative and inclusive organizational culture, sustainable financial resources, and effective operating systems. The top candidate must be adept at building strong, collaborative partnerships with community partners and the legal community, and advancing pro bono legal representation.

Key Responsibilities

  • Vision and strategy: Lead the Committee’s strategic direction; collaborate with staff, Board, impacted communities, and other key stakeholders to set clear goals and achieve the Committee’s mission
  • Organizational culture:  Advance the Committee’s work to build an authentically diverse, equitable, and inclusive culture where all staff belong; foster a culture of transparency and collaboration
  • Professional development: Actively support professional development opportunities that promote individual and team growth
  • Relationship management: Build trusted relationships with impacted communities and organizers to inform case strategy and selection; nurture relationships with key stakeholders, including law firms, funders, community partners, staff, government agencies, and Board members
  • Resource development: Ensure the financial sustainability of the Committee by cultivating existing funder relationships and generating new revenue from earned and philanthropic sources
  • Operational best practices: Work in close collaboration with the COO to ensure day-to-day operations are professionally and efficiently organized and administered
  • Financial management: Work in close collaboration with the CFO to set financial priorities accurately, monitor the budget, and ensure sound financial controls are in place
  • External communications: Serve as the principal spokesperson and advocate for the Committee in local and national platforms and with media

Desired Skills, Experiences, and Attributes

  • Deep understanding of the root causes of systemic injustice and a proven commitment to advancing racial justice
  • Prior experience in movement lawyering and/or civil rights litigation 
  • Proven ability to develop consensus around and deliver on an organization's strategic vision and successfully achieve its mission
  • Experience in a nonprofit or legal services leadership role, including oversight of an organization or team's people, operations, and finances
  • Demonstrated aptitude for building and cultivating strong relationships with staff, Board, legal community, funders, community partners, and other key stakeholders
  • Successful record of fundraising for nonprofit, including identifying and engaging new funding opportunities
  • Effective and persuasive communicator, strong interpersonal skills, high emotional intelligence, and the ability to communicate with a broad range of audiences
  • Strong network and reputation within the local and national public interest sector, civil rights community, and movement spaces
  • A record of transparent communication and collaborative decision-making
  • Experience leading an organization or team's diversity, equity, and inclusion work
  • Experience working with unionized staff is a plus

Compensation and Benefits
The compensation range for this position is $190,000 to $210,000 and includes generous leave and employer-funded benefits.

The Executive Director will be expected to work out of the Washington, DC office; however, some remote work flexibility may be considered. The organization is currently on a hybrid work schedule.

The Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs is an equal opportunity employer. Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging are essential components of the Committee, and we encourage all qualified persons to apply. Applicants are accorded an equal opportunity for selection without regard to actual or perceived race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family responsibility, personal appearance, matriculation, or political affiliation.

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