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Counsel | Preventing Political Violence 🔥


The States United Democracy Center (States United) is hiring a Counsel to work on its Preventing Political Violence (PPV) portfolio, which seeks to help state and local officials mitigate, deter, and defend against violence and threats of violence that endanger democratic processes.

The Counsel, PPV will be both a core member of the organization’s legal program, and work in close collaboration with States United’s other functional departments (Research, Communications, State Engagement) and substantive projects (Election Protection, Accountability, Disinformation). The PPV portfolio partners closely with other organizations, law enforcement experts, researchers, social scientists, and communications professionals to expand and enhance the PPV tools available to state and local officials, including legal and policy guidance, best practices, and litigation.


About the Organization:

The States United Democracy Center is a new and growing nonpartisan organization advancing free, fair, and secure elections. We focus on connecting pro-democracy state and local officials, law enforcement leaders, and other partners across the U.S. with the tools and expertise they need to safeguard our democracy. During the 2020 election, then as the Voter Protection Program, we quickly became a go-to resource for state leaders, the press, and partner organizations. By bringing together current and former governors, secretaries of state, attorneys general, and law enforcement leaders for the first time, we helped build a nonpartisan firewall against those trying to undermine democracy. Now as States United, we support these partners in protecting the integrity of elections, holding those who seek to undermine democracy accountable, and preventing acts of political violence.


Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Maintain updated working knowledge of the evolution of the political violence (PV) threat to democratic processes to inform, add to, and help prioritize among the projects within the PPV portfolio.
  • Conduct legal and factual research in support of litigation, best practice development, legal guidance, policy analysis, and related initiatives.
  • Reporting to and closely collaborating with the Senior Counsel for PPV, serve as the “owner” of a variety of projects core to the PV portfolio, stewarding them from start to finish, demonstrating skilled project management.
  • Work closely with law enforcement consultants to generate training and other materials to help improve law enforcement agencies’ responses to PV.
  • Assist in developing accountability litigation for perpetrators of PV by conducting factual, legal, and strategic analysis, and working with external researchers and attorneys engaged in the same.
  • Support PV accountability litigation in state and federal courts around the country, working closely with other States United attorneys, external counsel, and co-counsel.
  • Provide expert legal advice to the States United senior leadership, Chief Executive Officer, Board members, stakeholders, partners, coalition members, and others who seek our assistance on PPV.
  • Partner with colleagues in the Research and Communications Departments to analyze legal issues and develop public education and other materials, including drafting and/or reviewing policy reports, white papers, and press materials as to PPV.
  • Collaborate with partner organizations and state and local officials around the country to better understand and address their PPV needs.
  • Work with a robust pro bono legal representation program, including external law firms and lawyers.
  • Draft materials, memos, guidance, and research for the PPV portfolio, and the Legal, Research, and Communications Departments.
  • Attorney admitted to the bar in at least one state, with a minimum of three (3) years of relevant experience.
  • Experience developing legal guidance, best practice, and related materials driven principally by personal initiative.
  • Ability to support significant public interest litigation.
  • Team player who can partner and collaborate with other attorneys and experts, and coordinate with internal and external legal, research, communications, and other teams.
  • Excellent critical thinking skills with an ability to creatively develop and execute thoughtful solutions to complex problems.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in coalition.
  • Appetite for entrepreneurial work including identifying opportunities, trying things that haven’t been tried, and iteration.
  • Outstanding judgment about legal issues, client services, and organizational needs.
  • Outstanding writing and editing skills, including drafting and editing briefs and other forms of legal analysis.
  • Excellent project management skills with the ability to effectively prioritize and mobilize appropriate resources to accomplish objectives on deadline, manage and communicate expectations, and drive results in a team culture.
  • Display a positive attitude, show concern for people and community, demonstrate presence, self-confidence, common sense, and good listening ability.
  • Experience interacting with, or working with or for law enforcement (e.g., on civil rights enforcement, policy development), or for a civil society organization on issues involving law enforcement.
  • Experience on law enforcement and/or political violence issues.
  • Experience working on complex civil litigation, public interest litigation and/or policy development.
  • Experience working with state or local officials or legislative bodies.
  • Familiarity with election processes.
  • Familiarity with characteristics of and trends in political violence in the U.S.

We welcome and encourage individuals to apply even if they do not have all or any of the preferred qualifications listed above.


Compensation + Benefits:

Salary will be between $80,000 and $140,000; commensurate to experience.

States United Democracy Center offers generous benefits including 100% employer-paid health, vision, and dental plans plus matching retirement plans.

Our offices are located in Boston, MA and Washington, DC. This position will include flexibility to be remote.

States United Democracy Center is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other characteristic protected by law. Women, people of color, LGBTQ+ individuals, people with disabilities, and veterans are strongly encouraged to apply.


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