Assistant Federal Public Defender

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Job location
510 Austin Avenue, Waco, TX, USA
Suite 1200
Waco, TX 76701
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
Federal Public Defender WDTX
Street address: 
300 Convent Street
Job type: 
Legal - Defender
Position Description: 

Position Announcement 24-14
Office of the Federal Public Defender
Western District of Texas (Waco)

THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER, Western District of Texas, is accepting applications for the position of Assistant Federal Public Defender to be stationed in Waco, Texas. The Federal Public Defender operates under authority of the Criminal Justice Act, 18 U.S.C. 3006A, to provide defense services in federal criminal cases and related matters by appointment from the court to individuals unable to afford counsel.

Duties. This position will heavily focus on legal research and writing. The assistant federal public defender will represent clients charged with federal criminal offenses and clients involved in other matters covered under the Criminal Justice Act. Regular responsibilities include working with clients; digesting large case files and investigative materials; developing litigation strategies; drafting pleadings; conducting evidentiary hearings and trials; working with experts and other witnesses; and supervising teams of investigators, mitigation specialists, paralegals, and legal assistants. The position requires travel for investigation, litigation, and training, and may involve foreign travel. Federal public defender attorneys may not engage in the private practice of law.

Selection Criteria. The successful applicant will have strong writing and oral advocacy skills, an established capacity or clearly demonstrated aptitude for excellence in criminal defense practice, a commitment to the representation of indigent accused persons, and a reputation for integrity. Applicants must also possess the ability to communicate effectively with clients, witnesses, colleagues, staff, and court and agency personnel as part of their employment. Finally, applicants must also be team-oriented and possess skills for collaboration, strategic litigation, compassionate representation, and unique approaches to the issues affecting our clients. Criminal litigation and/or appellate experience is preferred. Other related experience may be considered.

Salary and Benefits. The salary of an assistant federal public defender is commensurate with that of an assistant U.S. attorney with similar qualifications and experience. The position is in the excepted service and does not carry the tenure rights of the competitive Civil Service. The position offers federal government employment benefits, including participation in health and life insurance program, retirement, and the Thrift Savings Plan. Salary is payable only by Electronic Funds Transfer (direct deposit).


Requirements. An Assistant Federal Public Defender must be (1) a graduate of an accredited law school; (2) admitted to practice before a state bar, but a Texas bar license is strongly preferred; and (3) licensed to practice in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas prior to entry on duty. Spanish-language fluency is desirable but not required. Appointment is subject to a satisfactory background investigation, including but not limited to an FBI name and fingerprint check and an IRS tax check.

To apply: 

How to Apply. Qualified persons may apply by sending a letter of interest (mentioning announcement 24-14), a résumé, references, and representative writing sample. Litigation experience should be described in detail. Send all required documents in a single PDF document named with applicant’s “last name, first name-Announcement 24-14 WA AFPD” by email to [email protected]. Electronic submissions sent directly to the Defender will not be considered. For applicants with disabilities, this organization provides reasonable accommodations, which are decided on a case-by-case basis. To request a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or interview process, contact personnel administrator Victoria B. Longoria at (210) 981-2081. More than one position may be filled from this announcement. Position announced July 3, 2024, subject to the availability of funds; open until filled.

Equal Opportunity Employer
Salary range: 
Submission deadline: 
Sunday, December 1, 2024