Assistant Public Defender 1 - Prison Legal Services

You are here

Job location
250 E. Broad Street, 14th floor
Columbus, OH 43215
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
Ohio Public Defender's Office
Street address: 
250 E. Broad Street, 14th floor
Job type: 
Legal - Defender
Position Description: 

The Office of the Ohio Public Defender (OPD) is seeking a zealous and committed Assistant Public Defender 1 (APD1) to join the Prison Legal Services (“PLS”) Section of our Legal Department. Advocacy is at the core of a PLS attorney’s job:
attorneys in the group represent incarcerated people before the Ohio Parole Board and people who are facing reimprisonment in parole and post-release control revocation hearings. PLS attorneys are flexible: they vigorously defend clients in revocation hearings and make compelling cases for release when before the Ohio Parole Board. PLS attorneys
also provide legal orientations to all individuals sentenced to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction and answer questions pertaining to criminal sentences, jail-time credit, release mechanisms, and other common inquiries.
This APD1 position is currently headquartered in Franklin County, Ohio with anticipated significant time spent at the Ohio Reformatory for Women (“ORW”) in Marysville, Ohio. The attorney hired to this position focuses on representation of clients in parole and postrelease control hearings. The attorney is also expected to present a legal orientation to newly incarcerated women and answer questions – orally and in writing – pertaining to criminal sentences, jail time credit, judicial and other release mechanisms. *Please note: Although the OPD currently does not hold any in-person office hours at ORW, this APD1 position has historically been headquartered at ORW. Depending upon the state of the COVID pandemic, this position will likely require work at ORW, the central office of the Ohio Public Defender, and at hearing locations throughout the state of Ohio. *
The position will work closely with five fellow PLS attorneys, two supervising attorneys, and an administrative professional, and will collaborate with colleagues on client advocacy across the Legal Department. A successful candidate will have strong advocacy skills and a client-centered ethos. Because the position currently requires working from home
for a portion of time, a successful candidate will be self-motivated and comfortable communicating via Teams or other conferencing software during those times.
Essential duties of this position include but are not limited to:
Represents indigent individuals at parole and post-release control violation hearings around the State of Ohio. This requires adequate preparation and investigation to engage in an adversarial administrative hearing process.
Represents indigent individuals in hearings before the Ohio Parole Board. This requires preparation involving close contacts with client’s family and community-support systems. It also requires written and oral advocacy.
Provides legal services to incarcerated individuals at the Ohio Reformatory for Women in Marysville, Ohio, and at various Ohio Prisons throughout the state.
Conducts legal research, prepares motions & other pleadings, reviews drafts of pleadings, briefs, motions, and memoranda.
Collaborates with other attorneys in the Legal Department on strategic litigation and advocacy.
Works with Legal Department Manager & PLS Supervisors regarding administrative tasks related to operation of the prison legal services section.
**Please submit a Cover Letter and Writing Sample with your application. Applications without a cover letter and writing sample will not be reviewed.**


Licensed to practice law in State of Ohio pursuant to section 4705.01 of Revised Code.
Note: Temporary Certification for Practice in Legal Services, Public Defender, and Law School Programs may be accepted in lieu of License to practice law in State of Ohio pursuant to Gov. Bar R. IX of the Supreme Court of Ohio.

About the Office of the Ohio Public Defender The OPD is the state agency responsible for providing legal representation and other services to people accused or convicted of a crime who cannot afford to hire an attorney. OPD Mission: Advocating. Fighting. Helping. OPD Vision: A Fair Justice System. OPD Values: Compassion. Dignity. Equity. Integrity. Service. Community. OPD Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: Our commitment to inclusion is inseparable from our commitment to a fair justice system. We strive to ensure inclusive spaces and services for our staff, our clients, and Ohio’s diverse communities. We are committed to building a work environment where all our team members have a voice and can embrace our differences to innovate service to the public. We can best meet our public defense mission through a diverse workforce and an inclusive workplace, where employees thrive, our mission is accomplished, and Ohioans are served. #TeamOPD is grounded in diversity, equity, inclusion as we work together to pursue fairness and justice for all people.
Salary range: 
Submission deadline: 
Monday, September 27, 2021