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Senior Attorney, Biodiversity Defense Program

Job Location

Washington, D.C.


Type of Job




Published By

Publisher Name

Published Date

Aug 16, 2021

About the job

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Earthjustice is the premier nonprofit environmental law organization. We take on the biggest, most precedent-setting cases across the country. We wield the power of law and the strength of partnership to protect people’s health; to preserve magnificent places and wildlife; to advance clean energy; and to combat climate change. We partner with thousands of groups, supporters, individuals and communities to engage the critical environmental issues of our time, and bring about positive change. We are guided by a passionate, ambitious vision for the future for people and our planet: until justice stands for all, we will never rest. We are here because the earth needs a good lawyer.

Founded in 1971, Earthjustice has a distinguished track record of achieving significant, lasting environmental protections. We achieve this by hiring people who share a passion for justice and a healthy environment. Our headquarters are in San Francisco with offices in Anchorage, Juneau, Los Angeles, Tallahassee, Honolulu, New York, Philadelphia, Denver, Seattle, Bozeman, Miami and Washington, DC.

The Biodiversity Defense Program of Earthjustice is seeking to hire a Senior Attorney whose docket will focus on advocating for key policy initiatives from the Biden Administration. The position will initially prioritize administrative and legislative advocacy over litigation work but that prioritization could shift in the future as needed to address critical biodiversity issues. The position is available immediately.

Earthjustice launched a new Biodiversity Defense Program in the summer of 2021 to build upon our 50-year legacy of protecting wildlife species and their habitat by focusing renewed attention on the biggest drivers of biodiversity loss, including habitat destruction and over-exploitation of wildlife. The program’s work will bring Earthjustice’s strategic, collaborative, and hard-hitting approach to environmental protection into new geographies and issues. In addition, because this work is immense and intersectional, a key piece of this program’s strategy is partnering with our 14 regional offices and programs to add litigation and policy knowledge to their work and to build new partnerships. Further, we aim to advance policies to protect habitat critical to the survival of species, such as a national plan to permanently protect America’s carbon-dense and biodiverse old-growth forests, reform of the federal oil and gas leasing program, and promulgation of regulations to implement the Endangered Species Act.



  • Lead advocacy campaigns to advance policies essential to protecting and restoring biodiversity, including through outreach to administrative and legislative decision makers, close coordination with existing allies and partners, and development of new partnerships.
  • Work closely with other attorneys and Policy and Legislative staff to attain policy gains. Work with our Communications team, as well as clients and partners, to conduct effective outreach and leverage legal advocacy to obtain positive change and results.
  • As needed, undertake litigation work to advance program goals.
  • Train and mentor associate attorneys, including by building their skills in the course of administrative and, potentially, legal advocacy.


  • Law school graduate and admitted to, or willing to apply for admission to, the bar association of the jurisdiction where the position is located.
  • At least 6 years of policy experience.
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively litigate complex cases—including the full range of litigation tasks, such as factual investigation, legal research, discovery, briefing, and courtroom advocacy—will be a plus factor for any candidate, but is not essential.  However, interest in and willingness to undertake litigation work as needed is required.
  • Excellent research, analytic, writing and communication skills.
  • Experience collaborating with diverse allies and partners in advocacy work.
  • Strong work ethic, initiative, sound judgment.
  • Demonstrates an awareness and sensitivity to the needs and concerns of individuals from diverse cultures, backgrounds and orientations.
  • Contributes to the creation of a diverse, equitable and inclusive work culture that encourages and celebrates differences.
  • Commitment to public interest work and a passion for the role of Earthjustice and its mission, including a desire to fight for the right of all to a healthy environment.

Salary depends on experience.
Salary range in Washington, DC: $151,100+


We offer a mission-focused work environment and a competitive compensation package, including excellent benefits.  Earthjustice is an equal opportunity employer and highly values diversity.


To Apply

Interested candidates should submit the following via Jobvite:

  • Resume
  • One or two page cover letter explaining your interest in this position and the skills you would bring to it.
  • Writing sample, preferably a piece of advocacy writing that primarily reflects your work.
  • Law school transcript.
  • List of three references

Please reach out to if you are having technical difficulties submitting your application. No phone calls, drop-ins, or hard copies.


Earthjustice is driven by a passion for justice, partnership, and excellence. Our core values lead us to seek a broad range of perspectives and backgrounds to achieve our mission and to maintain an inclusive environment where all staff are valued and respected. As an equal opportunity employer, we are committed to employment practices that ensure that employees and applicants for employment are provided with equal opportunities without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, or any other factor that is not related to the position.


For positions located within the City and County of San Francisco Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment-qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.


For positions located within the City of Los Angeles: We will consider qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the Los Angeles Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring.

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