Senior Legal Counsel

About the Position

Senior Legal Counsel is responsible for reducing criminalization and incarceration at a local level through issue advocacy campaigns based on research, education, media generation, and support of allied organizations.

Work includes, but is not limited to: 

  • Provide recommendations on criminal justice reform to local actors, organizations, elected officials, and advocacy partners to develop a more humane justice system;
  • Develop materials, such as reports, fact sheets, legal briefs, media backgrounders, powerpoints, op-eds, and letters to the editor that are then distributed to local activists, media organizations, and other advocacy partners. These materials are instrumental in creating the atmosphere for change at the local level;
  • Create forums and other educational initiatives, and develop other special projects, that elevate key criminal justice initiatives in the media and in local communities and can serve as launchpads for broader change;
  • Communicate with influential legal and media actors on the ground to collect research on local practices;
  • Conduct extensive research on policies and practices that impact incarceration rates, and lead to excessive punishments at the local level;
  • Assist grassroots advocates in utilizing research to push for change in their community and influence powerful actors;
  • Work with advocates to develop draft policies;
  • Work directly with appointed and elected actors to advise them on best practices and  policies;
  • Work with grassroots groups and media to ensure elected officials are held accountable and implement reform policies;

Desired Qualifications

  • JD required and at least 8 years of criminal justice work experience;
  • Outstanding written and verbal communication skills;
  • Attention to detail and emphasis on accuracy;
  • Demonstrated ability to think strategically and creatively, problem solve, and manage multiple tasks concurrently;
  • Demonstrated maturity and judgment to handle high-stakes and sensitive communications with public officials, organizers, advocates, and media;
  • Prior communications, organizing, policy, political, or issue campaign experience;
  • Requires some travel and willingness to work nights and weekends when necessary;
  • Ours is a virtual workspace and requires comfort working in that environment;
  • Spanish language fluency highly desirable.


Senior Legal Counsel: $100,000 to $117,500 salary, depending on experience level, with comprehensive benefits package.

About The Justice Collaborative

The Justice Collaborative is a team of legal experts, researchers, journalists, and media strategists supplying deep legal, policy, and communications expertise to people and organizations working to advance a common goal of ending the dehumanization that has criminalized extreme vulnerability and created an incarceration crisis, and building in its place an America with dignity and freedom for all of us, starting with those who are the most vulnerable.

The policies driving this crisis are built upon a maze of local, state, and federal laws and procedures. We work to cut through the complexity and confusion, shrinking the criminal legal system and creating a more free, more stable, more safe America. Our work empowers, educates, and supports a community of leaders, problem-solvers, and allies at all levels, both outside the system advocating for change and inside those centers of power that determine the fate of both individuals and large swaths of people daily.

The Justice Collaborative (TJC) is a fiscally sponsored project of Tides Advocacy, a 501(c)(4) organization. TJC’s sister project, The Justice Collaborative Institute (TJCI), is a fiscally sponsored project of Tides Center, a 501(c)(3) organization. The projects share staff and resources pursuant to a cost-sharing agreement. Colloquially, both organizations are referred to as “TJC.”

Equal Employment Opportunity:

The Justice Collaborative and Tides Advocacy are an equal opportunity employer. We strongly encourage and seek applications from women, people of color, and bilingual and bicultural individuals, as well as members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities. Applicants shall not be discriminated against because of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, disability, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, color, marital status, or medical condition including acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) and AIDS-related conditions.

Applicants with Disabilities: 

Reasonable accommodation will be made so that qualified disabled applicants may participate in the application process. Please advise in writing of special needs at the time of application.

Application Process: 

Please send a cover letter, resume, a writing sample, and contact information for three professional references to, with “Senior Legal Counsel” in the subject line. We will begin reviewing applications immediately.