Director of Social Work

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Job location
6 Saint Paul Street
Baltimore, MD 21202
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
Maryland Office of the Public Defender
Street address: 
6 Saint Paul Street
Job type: 
Legal - Defender
Position Description: 

The Director of Social Work coordinates, develops, and leads the operations of OPD’s statewide social work program.
The Social Work Division serves as a national model for public defender offices around the country. With specialized training in forensic services, licensed social workers join with defense attorneys to provide holistic representation by assessing the underlying causes of clients’ behaviors, and developing individualized recommendations for treatment. OPD social workers collaborate with one another, attorneys, investigators, mental health professionals, educators, family members, and anyone else who may provide insight pertaining to the lives of their clients. By investigating a client’s social history, OPD social workers unearth the root causes of a client’s decision-making, and develop meaningful plans to remove barriers to success in the future. Social workers meet with clients, family members and other support networks to unearth, scrutinize and evaluate client information, then use that information to offer alternatives to incarceration and expert testimony. The Director is involved in the day-to-day operations, management, and supervision of all members of the social work team, including staff and panel social workers, core staff, and interns. OPD Social Workers work collaboratively with OPD attorneys and staff to identify and address core issues that impact the lives of OPD’s clients. This position is based at 6 St. Paul Street, Baltimore, Maryland but involves statewide travel.

•Coordinates, develops, and plans the operations of OPD’s statewide social work program.
•Recommends and implements policies and procedures for the Social Work Division.
•Oversees social work staffing, including:
o Recruits, interviews, and hires staff in collaboration with District and Division Leadership and the Human Resources
o With OPD Administration, monitors and oversees the process for requesting and approving panel social workers and
social work experts.
o Secures, selects and places social work interns across Maryland.
o Coordinates and ensures completion of staff evaluations within Social Work Division.
•Supervises social work supervisors, interns and panel social workers.
•In conjunction with the Training Division and District and Division leadership, coordinates, develops and conducts appropriate training:
o For social workers and interns to ensure sufficient subject matter expertise, skills to provide timely and comprehensive
assessments and court reports, and professional license maintenance.
o For lawyers and other litigation team members on subject areas that impact OPD client case representation (e.g. competency, criminal responsibility, and diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders).
•Cultivates, develops, and maintains community partnerships that help secure resources on behalf of OPD clients and increase programmatic capacity, particularly with social work interns.
•Works with OPD Administration to develop and implement special projects and initiatives and assist in identifying appropriate funding and other resources.
•Participates in Senior Management Team.


•Demonstrated commitment to zealous and holistic public defense.
•Demonstrated leadership, mentorship, communication, and management abilities.
•Extensive experience working in an indigent defense environment providing forensic social work services (5 years minimum).
•Understanding of ethical, professional and constitutional principles including attorney-client privilege and confidentiality; ability to apply those principles to social work practice.
•Eligible to become Licensed Certified Social Worker (LCSW-C) in Maryland. If not licensed in Maryland, employment offers will be made contingent upon becoming LCSW-C in Maryland by the selected start date.

To apply: 

If you wish to be considered for this position please submit a: (1) current curriculum vitae, (2) cover letter addressing the above qualifications, (3) list of references, and (4) completed state application available at

Items (1)-(3) must be submitted electronically. Please email all materials in one email to [email protected]. In the subject line of the email please indicate “Director of Social Work.” Incomplete applications will not be considered.


Equal Opportunity Employer
Salary range: 
Dependent on Experience
Submission deadline: 
Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Expiration date: 
Tuesday, January 16, 2018