Director of Advocacy, Family Law
Maryland Legal Aid
July 28, 2022
Maryland Legal Aid seeks an experienced family law attorney for the Director of Advocacy for Family Law position. The Director of Advocacy for Family Law will provide training and substantive guidance for legal staff on litigation at all stages, including appeals, help craft strategies that will have an impact on the law, and provide important updates on advancements in family law. Since 1911, Maryland Legal Aid has provided high-quality legal services to low-income people and communities, and vulnerable individuals – helping to remedy their civil legal issues and become empowered to overcome challenges, achieve stability, independence, and reach their goals. From deep connections to clients and communities, it identifies and seeks to remedy systemic barriers. Although the position will be based in Maryland Legal Aid’s Baltimore headquarters, the Director of Advocacy for Family Law will work with legal staff in the program’s 12 offices located throughout the State.
Under the direction of the Legal Director, the Director of Advocacy for Family Law will be part of MLA’s Statewide Advocacy Support (SAS) Unit. The SAS Unit is made up of five Directors of Advocacy with expertise in the following areas of law:
- Director of Advocacy for Administrative Law
- Director of Advocacy for Children’s Rights
- Director of Advocacy for Consumer Law
- Director of Advocacy for Family Law
- Director of Advocacy for Housing and Community Development
These Directors of Advocacy are considered “deans” or leaders in their substantive area of law. They invest a significant amount of time leading, supporting and mentoring MLA’s legal staff to build the staff’s skills in providing representation to MLA’s clients and in statewide advocacy efforts in their area of law. The Directors of Advocacy identify systemic barriers experienced by clients across the state and develop strategies to address those barriers (i.e., litigation, policy, other). They work in collaboration with MLA’s staff, as well as other organizations, client communities and government agencies to implement those strategies, monitor outcomes and make adjustments as needed. These strategies could include serving as lead or co-counsel on complex litigation, appellate advocacy, permissible legislative work, community education, and collaborative work with community organizations and other legal services providers.
- Develop, lead, and ensure high quality and high impact statewide legal advocacy.
- Provide substantive guidance and support to legal staff to ensure they are have critical updates in of statutory and procedural changes in family law and to assist in their professional growth.
- Guide, mentor and participate in complex litigation and appeals in the area of family law.
- Collaborate with the Statewide Advocacy Directors and provide direct supervision to dedicated family law staff and special projects housed within the SAS unit.
- Expand and elevate MLA’s advocacy work by working with partners, stakeholders, the public and the national legal services community in the area of family law.
- Assist with the strategic use of data and technology to monitor trends and ensure effective advocacy strategies in the area of family law.
- Advise the Executive Director and any designees concerning proposed changes in state family law or governmental policy proposals that may affect clients of Maryland Legal Aid.
- Recommend and participate in any training or tasks forces concerning family law.
- Identify trends in state and national family law cases, to strategically inform case decisions.
- JD from an accredited law school.
- Current Bar membership in good standing to practice law in any state, Maryland preferred. If licensed to practice in another state, a commitment to obtain licensure in Maryland after hire.
- Federal and state litigation experience, including experience with appeals, in the area of family law.
- Possess a deep knowledge and appreciation for the unique needs of MLA’s family law clients, including victims of domestic violence, low-income individuals seeking custody and/or who face significant income disparities with the opposing party in family law litigation.
- 7+ years of legal experience with working knowledge of legal aid programs.
- A genuine passion and deep commitment for the mission of Maryland Legal Aid and to stay current on developments in the area of family law.
- Demonstrated ability to motivate, advise, coach, and give constructive feedback to legal staff at all levels.
- Significant experience effectively using current technology and remote communications to supervise and, as needed, co-counsel, with staff located in multiple offices.
- Exceptional written and oral communication skills.
- The ability to partner with a team of professionals across offices.
- Experience advocating for policy reform at the federal, state and/or local level.
- Willingness to spend significant time in our offices across the state as needed and to travel to conferences.
$91,400 and up depending on experience.
How To Apply
Maryland Legal Aid is committed to equity, justice and inclusion. As an equal opportunity employer, MLA seeks to hire employees from diverse backgrounds and perspectives that are reflective of the communities we serve, including people with disabilities, people of color, women and members of traditionally underrepresented groups.
Apply for Director of Advocacy for Family Law using the link below:
**A RESUME AND COVER LETTER ARE REQUIRED TO APPLY FOR THIS POSITION**