Director of Programs

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Job location
4035 Washington Avenue
Suite 203
New Orleans, LA 70125
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
Justice & Accountability Center of Louisiana
Street address: 
4035 Washington Avenue, Suite 203
New Orleans
Job type: 
Position Description: 

The Justice & Accountability Center of Louisiana (JAC) seeks a full-time Director of Programs to work with and for currently and formerly incarcerated people and their families to mitigate the collateral consequences of the criminal legal system.

The Organization: JAC tackles deficiencies in the post-conviction phase of the criminal legal system while creating a supportive, collaborative space for attorneys and advocates. Our theory of change is to support impacted communities by providing legal services, advocacy, education, technical support, and data to reduce the consequences of mass incarceration and increase opportunity for formerly incarcerated people to reclaim their lives. We provide direct legal services, identify the obstacles to successful reentry that people with criminal records are facing, and offer real-time one-on-one solutions as well as identifying, developing, and advocating for policy and practice change to eliminate barriers for others. We are a nearly ten-year-old, small, statewide non-profit that relies on pro bono attorneys, contract attorneys, and volunteers, in addition to our staff, to accomplish our mission.

The Role: The Director of Programs should have at least five years of experience with non-profit or government systems management and implementation of programs, preferably in legal services. Louisiana has undergone justice reinvestment and JAC is heavily involved in the implementation and success of the delivery of associated programs, which requires the Director of Programs to build relationships with myriad non-profit, government, and foundation partners through meetings, Zoom/conference calls, and eventually in-person connections. S/he will also manage JAC’s clinics that address the legal needs of those re-entering our communities after incarceration and those experiencing the consequences of criminal records. The Director of Programs will also hold responsibility for managing and implementing our ReEntry Docket Program, where we recall warrants and eliminate traffic court debt for formerly incarcerated people in lower-level courts in multiple parishes.

This is a new position, so we are seeking a self-motivated, creative, organized, and energetic individual to fill the role. You should be someone who enjoys working with data, believes in collaborative models, and has a knack for facilitating efficient systems that meaningfully change the circumstances of people with criminal records.

Primary Job Functions:
● Manage, staff, supervise, and oversee our ReEntry Legal and Expungement clinics and ReEntry Docket programs;
● Identify the need for new clinics, like a potential criminal conviction fees clinic, and design and implement the vision for new clinics, collaborating with non-profit partners and government agencies;
● Monitor the implementation of Justice Reinvestment Act (JRI) legislation and funding, for which JAC is a sub-grantee, including coordinating with data management systems of partner agencies, ethically communicating outcomes both orally and through written reports, and participating in local/parish and statewide JRI meetings;
● Identify systemic issues arising from clinics and programs, connect them to larger policy and legal solutions, and develop and implement strategic plans of action;
● Engage with JAC’s Clean Slate campaign and the Louisiana Stop Solitary Coalition (for which JAC is the backbone administrative support) and ensure programs are fully integrated into the campaigns;
● Supervise contract attorneys and non-attorney workers to ensure they are adhering to agreed-upon referral processes in a timely and ethical manner;
● Identify, recruit, train, and supervise pro bono attorneys, law students, and other legal workers;
● Maintain volunteer history in our CRM system, manage CLE credits, and seek opportunities to award, recognize, and thank JAC volunteers;
● Identify opportunities for community education and work with staff, volunteers, and partners to develop manuals, videos, forms, and web-based applications to assist impacted people with navigating barriers and obtaining solutions to problems, including rolling out a campaign to introduce the newly developed JAC expungement app;
● Oversee the development of content for JAC social media platforms, newsletters, and web site(s), including updating JAC’s main web site and writing and issuing at least monthly newsletters;
● Gather and analyze JAC data for sharing with partners, the public, volunteers, donors, and foundations as ethically permitted under law;
● Develop and maintain internal data tracking systems for purposes of reporting to funders and effectively receiving and sending referrals to partner organizations;
● Draft, edit, and submit grant reports, working with staff to gather necessary information;
● Lead internal staff coordination for all programs including setting program goals in collaboration with staff and contractors, developing agendas for meetings, planning/facilitating meetings, following up on action steps, determining whether additional planning time is required to achieve program goals, and calendaring/adhering to associated deadlines;
● Assist with grant identification and writing;
● Work closely with other JAC staff to ensure complete communication and collaborative interaction of each other’s skills, ideas, and strategies; and
● Coordinate and communicate effectively with our partners to ensure true collaboration.


Education & Experience:
● 5+ years of program management at a non-profit or government agency as a central job duty is required;
● Experience supervising volunteers, students, and/or pro bono attorneys is required;
● Experience in supervising staff is preferred, and is a central component in how the salary rate will be determined;
● Experience in providing or managing legal services, whether criminal or civil, is preferred;
● Master of Nonprofit Management/Administration/Leadership, Master of Business Administration, and/or project management certifications are preferred; and
● J.D. and/or actively licensed attorney is a bonus.

Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities:
● Flexible, organized, innovative, and creative;
● Proven collaboration and coordination skills;
● History of employing extreme accuracy and attention to detail in all work;
● Administrative and facilitation skills;
● Self-awareness;
● Self-directed, with an ability to independently identify next steps and follow through on them without too much need for prompting;
● Supervisory skills with both full time staff and with volunteers and students of varied skill levels;
● Commitment to racial equity, social justice, and decarceration;
● Ability to communicate effectively with courts, attorneys, clients, donors, media, government agencies, and the general public;
● Analytical skills including the ability to see the system and the infrastructure while also realizing the tasks and activities required to reach larger goals;
● Grant writing and reporting skills; and
● Ability to respond quickly to the changing needs of a developing organization working on multiple pilot projects and implementation of new laws.

To apply: 

Application Process:
Please email your cover letter, resume, a writing sample fully of your own creation, 3 references with contact information (we will not call without your permission) to [email protected] with “Director of Programs [Your Name]” in the subject line.

Please apply by December 4, 2020. Applications will immediately be considered on a rolling basis. Targeted start date is January 18, 2021.

Applications from out-of-state residents are welcome, but you must physically reside in Louisiana by the start date. JAC is currently working mostly remotely, but we have five outdoor legal clinics scheduled in Baton Rouge and potentially several more clinics in the Orleans Parish for 2021. This position is responsible for managing those clinics and must be physically present at each one.

No phone calls. Incomplete and late applications will not be considered. Only those candidates under consideration will be contacted.

JAC is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and will not discriminate against any employee or applicant on the basis of age, color, disability, gender, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any classification protected by federal, state, or local law. People with criminal convictions, individuals with family members involved in the criminal legal system, women, minorities, people with disabilities, and veterans are strongly encouraged to apply.

Additional Considerations: ● This is a full-time, exempt, professional position with a salary range of $75,000 to $85,000, depending on experience and whether this applicant has the experience to supervise staff. Health benefits are 100% paid. ● The Director of Programs may be called upon to work hours in excess of 40 hours in a workweek, including the potential for evening and weekend work, and particularly when the legislature is in session. ● Travel - particularly throughout Southeast Louisiana and to Baton Rouge and occasionally overnight, once COVID cases decline - will be necessary. An independent form of reliable transportation is required. ● This position is grant funded for one year, with possibility for renewal. ● JAC is an extremely small non-profit, which requires consistent dedication to mission, the ability to say no, and the willingness to stretch beyond comfort zones in order to move toward mission and goals. We also all make our copies, schedule our own meetings, and answer the phones.
Salary range: 
Submission deadline: 
Friday, December 4, 2020