Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Job Opening: ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project Director

DIRECTOR, IMMIGRANTS’ RIGHTS PROJECT [IRP-05]
American Civil Liberties Union Foundation
Center for Equality, New York or California
 
The American Civil Liberties Union Foundation (ACLU), founded in 1920, is a nationwide, non-profit, non-partisan organization, with more than 500,000 members and is dedicated to the principles of liberty and equality embodied in the U.S. Constitution.   Founded nearly twenty-five years ago, the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project (IRP) is dedicated to expanding and enforcing the civil liberties and civil rights of non-citizens and to combating public and private discrimination against immigrants. For more than two decades, the Project has been at the forefront of almost every major legal struggle on behalf of immigrants' rights through class action lawsuits, law reform litigation, judicial rulings and legal advocacy. At this important moment in the nation’s history, the ACLU invites applications for the next Director of its Immigrants’ Rights Project.  
 
OVERVIEW
 
The Immigrants’ Rights Project is part of the ACLU’s Center for Equality which works to uphold the federal Constitution’s promise that all Americans will receive equal protection of the law. The Center also includes the ACLU’s Racial Justice, Voting and Disability work.  The Director of the Immigrants’ Rights Project will report to the Director of the Center for Equality and will manage project offices located in both New York and California.
 
The Project Director of the Immigrants’ Rights Project will oversee a team of litigators and support staff with an active docket of cases in federal district and appellate courts throughout the country, and in the Supreme Court.  The cases cover access to the courts, immigrant detention, racial profiling of immigrants, due process in immigration proceedings and strategic challenges to state and local anti-immigrant laws and practices. 
 
The Immigrants’ Rights Project has successfully litigated  many major regional and national class action suits, argued landmark cases in the United States Supreme Court, established historic precedents, won many major appellate rulings in virtually every court of appeals,  and achieved major settlements benefitting hundreds of thousands of class members and individuals. 

Currently, the Project is leading the national legal strategy against state and local anti-immigrant laws, including Arizona’s SB1070; pursuing major challenges to immigration detention laws and practices; pursuing appellate cases to establish core constitutional principles related to habeas corpus, Fourth Amendment remedies, and due process rights; pursuing several cases challenging post-9/11 policies and practices that violated constitutional rights; and is litigating numerous cases in Arizona and elsewhere on racial profiling and police abuse of immigrants.  In addition, the Project supports and helps to coordinate the immigration litigation of the ACLU’s 53 affiliates.

The Project Director also plays a major role in developing and coordinating the ACLU’s non-litigation advocacy on immigration issues.  Through the ACLU’s Equality Center, the Project works closely with the ACLU’s Affiliate Support and Advocacy Department to develop and implement advocacy strategies for the ACLU’s 53 affiliates.  Working with the Communications Department, the Project helps to develop the ACLU’s strategy and messaging on immigration, and its staff provides leading ACLU spokespersons on the issues.  Working with the ACLU’s Washington Legislative Office, the Project works to inform both federal legislation and administrative initiatives. 
 
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

• In collaboration with the Center Director, determine the ACLU’s vision and priorities on civil liberties and human rights issues on behalf of immigrants;
• Engage with immigrant communities and advocacy groups in shaping the Project’s vision and priorities;
• Develop and oversee implementation of strategic litigation plans to achieve the Project’s vision and priorities;
• Supervise a team of litigators and support staff, who work to protect and advance the civil rights and constitutional protections of non-citizens; 
• Work with other departments of the ACLU to develop and coordinate the ACLU’s non-litigation advocacy on immigrants’ rights;
• Ensure that the Project’s resources are used effectively in support of Project priorities, including developing and administering a budget for the Project and overseeing overall project administration;
• Advise, support and inspire ACLU state affiliates to pursue and expand work on immigrants’ rights issues in their own jurisdictions independently and in collaboration with the National ACLU;
• Work with the ACLU’s Development Department to communicate the Project’s goals and successes to foundation and individual donors and prospects;
• Collaborate with other departments of the ACLU, particularly the other projects within the Center for Equality, to strengthen constitutional values and protection for non-citizens as well as identifying issues of racial justice with particular impact on non-citizens;
• Partner with sister organizations and advocates to further immigrants’ rights and to enhance the role of due process and constitutional values in the debate over immigration policy and law;
• Be a public spokesperson in speeches, debates, the media and other settings to advance the ACLU’s vision of the constitutional and civil liberties principles that apply to non-citizens.
 
EXPERIENCE AND QUALIFICATIONS

The ideal candidate will be strategic, ambitious, and creative, and should have the following experience and qualifications:

• A J.D. degree strongly preferred; it or other training and background appropriate to the Director’s roles and responsibilities required; 
• Significant experience either litigating complex constitutional cases or experience in immigration policy development and advocacy; 
• A demonstrated dedication to civil liberties and human rights and a familiarity with and commitment to issues relating to the constitutional and civil rights of immigrants;
• An ability to develop and implement multi-faceted advocacy campaigns that include litigation, lobbying and advocacy, communications, public education,  and community organizing;
• Experience working with immigrant communities preferred;
• Demonstrated leadership skills including experience supervising and mentoring a strong and diverse team of highly-talented lawyers and/or other professional advocates;
• Excellent interpersonal and communication skills including the ability to write and speak persuasively to diverse audiences, including lawyers, advocates, funders, donors and opinion leaders;
• A strong record of working in coalition with other public interest advocates and organizations;
• A demonstrated ability to communicate effectively with diverse audiences, including the general public, national and local media, policy makers, and others;
• An ability to anticipate and act on events and opportunities decisively and resourcefully, to advance the Immigrant Rights Project’s vision locally, regionally, and nationally;
• Excellent analytic and writing skills; 
• Willingness and ability to travel;
• Fluency in spoken and written Spanish a significant asset.

COMPENSATION

The ACLU offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, commensurate with experience and within parameters of the ACLU compensation scale.
LOCATION:  Either the New York City or San Francisco ACLU office.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send a cover letter, resume and writing sample by email to staff_search_sa@aclu.org - reference [IRP-05/WACLU] in subject line – or by mail to:

Human Resources
RE: [IRP-05/WACLU]
American Civil Liberties Union Foundation
125 Broad Street, 18th Floor
New York, NY 10004

Please indicate in your cover letter where you learned of this job posting.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, which will not be before February 26, 2011.

bh

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