Job Openings

Legal Director

Organization Overview:

Founded in 1969, Lawyers Alliance for New York is the leading provider of business and transactional legal services for nonprofits that are improving the quality of life in New York City neighborhoods. Each year, Lawyers Alliance represents more than 700 nonprofits on more than 1,300 legal projects and assists hundreds more through educational programs. The staff of 22, including 12 attorneys, works with more than 1,900 pro bono attorneys from law firms and corporations to deliver these services. 

Lawyers Alliance’s expertise-driven legal services help organizations to improve their programs, operations, and finances. Lawyers Alliance also cultivates and coordinates a national network of business law pro bono providers in fifteen locations around the United States committed to increasing the availability and quality of legal services for nonprofits in these communities.

Position Overview:

Building on its 50 year history and under the direction of its new Executive Director, Lawyers Alliance seeks a Legal Director to help the organization have an even bigger, better, and broader impact on the nonprofit and legal sectors moving forward. The Legal Director will lead Lawyers Alliance’s efforts to provide high quality legal and educational services that meet the evolving legal needs of nonprofits serving low-income and disadvantaged New Yorkers. The person who assumes this position should be an experienced lawyer and manager, with a strong passion for Lawyers Alliance’s mission and keen ability to motivate others to achieve positive results.

Primary Responsibilities Include:

Legal Representation

  • Lead planning and implementation of systematic client outreach strategies to nonprofit organizations and social enterprises to expand Lawyers Alliance’s service levels.
  • Identify challenges and opportunities in the nonprofit sector that prompt legal needs, and develop and manage timely program initiatives to help nonprofits address these needs.
  • Oversee legal representation services covering a wide range of business law and transactional topics, including governance, contracts, mergers, real estate, tax, intellectual property, employment law, and regulatory compliance.
  • Work with staff pro bono team and staff attorneys to increase pro bono opportunities for volunteer attorneys from law firms and corporations, screen new clients and legal matters, support volunteer attorneys, and assure quality control.
  • Develop and pursue revenue generation opportunities to increase legal fee, contract, and other income associated with services provided by in-house staff.

Educational Programming, Advocacy, and Information

  • Plan and conduct educational trainings, including workshops and webinars for nonprofit managers and board members and Continuing Legal Education sessions for attorneys.
  • Broaden and deepen Lawyers Alliance’s advocacy impact by working with its public policy team, coalitions, and community organizations to advance legislative, regulatory, and public policy initiatives that strengthen the nonprofit sector.
  • Work with staff and volunteer attorneys to produce timely legal alerts, checklists, model documents, and larger publications.
  • Oversee Resource Call service, designed to provide brief consultations and practical information to clients and non-clients with questions about nonprofit legal issues.

Management and Communications

  • As part of the Management Team, help improve operations, assist with goal setting and budgeting, represent the organization externally among key audiences, and position the organization for success.
  • Recruit, train, encourage, supervise, and evaluate attorneys, other staff, and onsite volunteers, and help to ensure a productive and collegial work environment for all staff.
  • Assist with fundraising and marketing efforts, including grant writing and reporting, printed and online communications, public speaking, and special events.
  • Lead or participate in additional program, planning, and infrastructure projects as requested.

Qualifications:

  • Admission to the New York Bar with at least eight years of legal experience, including significant expertise related to nonprofit, tax exempt organization, and/or general corporate law.
  • Strong people and program management skills, including at least two years in a managerial role responsible for motivating, supervising, and evaluating staff with varied levels of experience.
  • Entrepreneurial outlook and resourcefulness to help teams achieve ambitious goals.
  • Ability to manage collaborations and build consensus.
  • Strong intellectual, organizational, written, and oral presentation skills.
  • Additional helpful qualifications include:
    • Meaningful work experience in at least two relevant settings: large law firm, corporate legal department, government agency, nonprofit organization, and/or private foundation.
    • Demonstrated interest in one or more of Lawyers Alliance’s current program priority areas, which are: economic opportunity, housing and shelter, community arts, urban health, quality education, and nonprofit advocacy.
    • Proficiency in nonprofit finance, database management, contract management, statistics, and business development.
    • Legal experience related to risk management, real estate, tax, intellectual property, employment law, regulatory compliance, or other subjects of concern to nonprofits

This position begins immediately once filled and reports to the Executive Director.  Interested applicants should submit resume and cover letter to legaldirector@lawyersalliance.org as soon as possible.  Employee compensation package includes annual salary commensurate with role and experience as well as health, vacation and other benefits. Lawyers Alliance for New York is an equal opportunity employer.

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Corporate Engagement Counsel/Manager

Founded in 1969, Lawyers Alliance for New York is the leading provider of business and transactional legal services for nonprofit organizations that are improving the quality of life in New York City neighborhoods. Each year, Lawyers Alliance represents more than 700 nonprofits on more than 1,300 legal matters and works with 2,000 volunteer attorneys from law firms and corporations to provide these services. Lawyers Alliance's expertise-driven legal services help organizations to improve their programs, operations, and finances. 

Lawyers Alliance seeks an experienced lawyer and/or project manager to continue to expand its corporate relations, New York, and national activities. Primary responsibilities of the position include:

  • Attract and retain a strong and steady pool of quality pro bono attorneys from corporate legal departments to represent Lawyers Alliance's nonprofit clients helping low-income and disadvantaged individuals and communities in New York City.   
  • Develop, coordinate, and participate in new and existing types of pro bono opportunities for business and transactional attorneys from selected corporations, including legal representation projects, pro bono clinics, days of service, law firm and corporate partnerships, and educational trainings.
  • Expand and maintain institutional pro bono and philanthropic relationships with the corporations in Lawyers Alliance's volunteer network.
  • With colleagues, help organize Exponentum™, a national network of business law pro bono providers serving different geographic regions around the United States, whose members collaborate on joint legal and educational projects and work with law firms and corporations to advance the field of business law pro bono nationwide.
  • Coordinate and participate in Lawyers Alliance's client outreach, client intake, case placement, volunteer support and training, quality control, case closing, and program evaluation functions related to corporate pro bono projects.
  • Write and distribute timely articles, analyses, and marketing materials, and make oral presentations, to encourage and support corporate pro bono legal work.
  • Assist in Board development, Gala honoree cultivation, Cornerstone Awards, and special projects as they relate to Lawyers Alliance’s corporate counsel and national initiatives.

The Corporate Engagement Counsel/Manager will join a dedicated staff involved in dynamic public interest work. Qualifications include at least 6 years of relevant work experience, preferably in addition to a J.D. or other relevant graduate school degree. NY bar admission required for Counsel.  Experience related to the corporate sector, corporate transactions, nonprofits, managing junior staff, volunteer management, and relational databases are all a plus. The ideal candidate is able to work with varying people and constituencies, highly organized, and excellent at multi-tasking and coordinating a variety of messages, audiences, and projects.

This position is expected to begin by or in fall 2019, with annual salary approximately $90,000 to $100,000 depending on experience. Interested applicants should submit resume and cover letter to corporateengagementsearch@lawyersalliance.org as soon as possible. Lawyers Alliance for New York is an equal opportunity employer.

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Fellowship Opportunities

Business/Transactional Law Externally-Funded Fellowship Fall 2020

Organization Overview:

Founded in 1969, Lawyers Alliance for New York is the leading provider of business and transactional legal services for nonprofits that are improving the quality of life in New York City neighborhoods. By connecting lawyers, nonprofits, and communities, Lawyers Alliance for New York helps organizations to develop and provide housing, stimulate economic opportunity, improve urban health and education, promote community arts, and operate and advocate for vital programs that benefit low-income New Yorkers of all ages. Each year, Lawyers Alliance represents more than 700 nonprofits on more than 1,300 legal projects and assists hundreds more through educational programs. The staff of 22, including 12 attorneys, works with 2,000 pro bono attorneys from law firms and corporations to deliver these services.

Lawyers Alliance has five program priorities: community arts, economic opportunity, housing and shelter, quality education, and urban health. In addition, Lawyers Alliance has developed four special initiatives to address emerging legal needs of the nonprofit sector: advocacy, national leadership, risk management, and disaster relief.

Fellowships:

Lawyers Alliance is specifically seeking fellowship applicants for Skadden, Equal Justice Works, Kirkland & Ellis, and other externally-funded fellowships for the following program areas:

Our Community Arts program priority helps organizations to provide artistic outlets and use the arts to foster education, social supports and services, and urban development.  Clients are engaged in enrichment activities for children and the elderly, in-school and after-school programs, music and dance performances, therapeutic arts programs, and other community-based arts activities.

Through our Economic Opportunity program priority, Lawyers Alliance helps to train and place people in jobs, increase financial literacy and economic independence, attract lending and investment, and promote community vitality and stability in all five boroughs.  Clients include community loan funds, low-income federal credit unions, community development corporations, workforce development groups, business improvement districts and community revitalization organizations, faith-based groups, nonprofits involved in for-profit business ventures, and other economic opportunity organizations. 

Our Housing and Shelter program priority helps to create thousands of units of affordable and special needs housing, while working to increase services for homeless families and adults.  Clients include nonprofit affordable housing developers, housing development fund corporations, providers of neighborhood housing services, and supportive housing organizations serving special needs populations such as domestic violence survivors or the disabled. We also represent nonprofits that provide or advocate for food, shelter, and other social services.

Our Quality Education project priority helps nonprofit organizations that address educational needs from early childhood to adulthood. Clients include organizations that offer and support in-school and after-school educational enrichment, early learning and Head Start, public school improvement, charter schools and alternative public education programs, mentoring and tutoring, educational scholarships, college readiness and sustainability, occupational education, adult literacy, continuing education, English language learning, and STEM education.

Through our Urban Health program priority, Lawyers Alliance helps to promote preventative health, food security, healthy aging, and making New York City a greener place. Lawyers Alliance also supports the efforts of community-based organizations addressing social determinants of health in navigating New York State’s Medicaid Redesign. Clients include senior centers, afterschool programs, food and agricultural programs, parks and green spaces, educational organizations, mental health and behavioral health agencies, community health centers, nutrition and exercise programs, and nonprofits advocating for legislation and policies that eliminate health disparities and improve New Yorkers' lives.

The Advocacy Initiative strengthens the public policy impact of the nonprofit sector, by helping advocacy organizations with business and transactional law matters, understanding laws on lobbying and political activity, and legislation, as well as engaging in advocacy at the city, state, and federal levels on core issues affecting the nonprofit sector and in our five program priority areas.

Lawyers Alliance welcomes the opportunity to expose fellows to legal work and practical skills that address the legal needs of community-based and other nonprofit organizations focused on the above program priorities. Legal fellows work at Lawyers Alliance as a full-time staff attorney for one or two years and provide invaluable legal assistance to nonprofits and social enterprises that are serving low-income and disadvantaged New Yorkers. Our clients need help navigating a wide range of business law and issues, including nonprofit governance, structuring, contract, real estate, tax, regulatory and other concerns. Many seek legal advice on legal transactions with other parties.

Lawyers Alliance will work with qualified fellowship candidates who are applying for third-party funding to help them assess whether a public interest fellowship at Lawyers Alliance is a good fit. Many of our past fellows have worked on a wide range of business law and transactional issues across program priority areas, while others have developed or focused on one or more specific program priorities. Fellows develop professional skills and strengthen nonprofits by working on legal representation projects, teaching workshops and webinars on nonprofit legal issues, and assisting with client outreach, client screenings, legal research, pro bono clinics, volunteer attorney support, legal alerts and publications, and resource calls.

Lawyers Alliance is currently hosting a fellow through the National Center on Philanthropy and the Law (NCPL) Fellowship in Nonprofit Law, and also has a positive record of hosting public interest law fellows sponsored through the Skadden Foundation, Equal Justice Works, Harvard Law School, and Northwestern Pritzker School of Law.

Lawyers Alliance is seeking a May 2020 JD graduate, recent graduate, or an experienced attorney looking to transition to public interest work. Experience working with low-income clients and/or with nonprofit organizations on transactional legal issues is preferred.

For further information, please contact fellowshipsearch@lawyersalliance.org with a resume and a brief project proposal/cover letter. Please confirm in your cover letter that you are applying for an externally-funded fellowship position and identify the fellowship that you are applying for or have received. Lawyers Alliance for New York is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, people with disabilities, veterans, people over 40, and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people are welcome and encouraged to apply.

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Internship Opportunities

Lawyers Alliance for New York's Board, staff, and volunteer attorneys are an unparalleled team of professionals who, together with our donors, are dedicated to improving the quality of life for people in low-income communities throughout New York City. By specializing in business and transactional legal services for nonprofits, Lawyers Alliance enhances our clients' performance, which translates into expanded and improved programs for the families, children, and adults who need them most. We periodically are looking for student interns to join us, as volunteers or as part of a school-funded arrangement.  

School Year Undergraduate Internship: Lawyers Alliance seeks a motivated college junior or senior for a volunteer unpaid internship. The intern will be expected to work in the office for at least 8 hours per week for at least ten weeks and will:

  • Conduct online factual research related to the nonprofit sector and pro bono trends and assist Lawyers Alliance staff in gathering and analyzing research;
  • Participate in Lawyers Alliance's client intake process;
  • Follow up by telephone and email with clients and volunteer attorneys to obtain status information regarding active or recently closed legal matters;
  • Assist in planning special events, such as pro bono clinics and volunteer awards.
  • Collaborate with and observe staff members at various levels to learn more about the nonprofit and legal sectors; and
  • Complete other projects as requested.

Ideal candidate will be a motivated, detail-oriented team player who takes initiatives. We welcome candidates who are flexible and have a positive attitude. Interested applicants should submit a resume and cover letter to Intern19@lawyersalliance.org

School Year Legal Internships: Lawyers Alliance for New York offers unpaid internships for law students during the school year on the basis of student interest, staff attorney availability, and client need. Law student interns work with staff attorneys to provide legal assistance and information to nonprofits related to corporate, real estate, employment, intellectual property, tax, and other legal topics. Examples of prior assignments include assisting with client intake for a charter school with corporate law questions, assisting with a real estate construction loan closing for a supportive housing organization, and updating materials to be used in an employment law workshop for nonprofit managers. For more information, please contact Interim Legal Director Laura Abel at label@lawyersalliance.org.

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