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Assistant General Counsel for The Public Interest Network

Posted on: February 7, 2020

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Job Description

Assistant General Counsel


The Public Interest Network operates more than 15 organizations committed to a shared vision of a better world, a set of core values, and a strategic approach to change. These groups include U.S. PIRG, Environment America and National Environmental Law Center, and encompass 400-plus staff.

We take a principled, but pragmatic approach to creating change. We build organizations and run campaigns that connect big ideas to concrete policy changes that improve the quality of our environment and our lives. We’re transpartisan—we reach out to everybody who might agree with us and consider joining us, including liberals, conservatives and everyone in between. We value dialogue over polarization. We invest in people and strategies that deliver results, including advocacy, lobbying, campaigning, litigation, policy research and grassroots organizing.

We also work closely with the Fund for the Public Interest, which conducts fundraising, membership-building, and other organization-building efforts on behalf of organizations both inside and outside the network.  

Job Description

We are seeking an Assistant General Counsel who is passionate about the issues we are working on and committed to helping organizations achieve real change.  

Representative responsibilities include:

  • Corporate and Tax Compliance: Fostering sound corporate governance practices, maintaining the organizations’ good standing with federal and state corporate and tax regulators, and ensuring compliance with IRS guidelines relating to lobbying and political activities of nonprofit organizations.


  • Employment Practices: Advising on employment matters and benefits systems, ensuring compliance with employment laws, training of all staff managers and review of employment materials, and defending against employment-related claims. 


  • Election Law & Campaign Finance: Advising groups on options & structures for election-related work, including formation of PACs, 527s, & ballot issue committees; advising on non-partisan voter registration drives, neighborhood voter contact programs, tracking & reporting to FEC & state agencies, and guidelines for fundraising & communications.


  • First Amendment & Charitable Solicitation: Representing the organizations’ right to conduct door-to-door and street canvassing in cities and towns across the country.


  • Contracts: Drafting and reviewing contracts, leases, grant agreements, and other legal documents.


  • Risk Management: Working with the organizations’ leaders to reduce liability risk through adopting policies that protect the organizations from legal exposure.


The ideal candidate will have a J.D., excellent academic credentials, a track record of exercising independent judgment and discretion to solve problems, ideally one to five years of legal experience working in one or more of the practice areas described above, and a strong desire and commitment to nonprofit and political work. 

Successful candidates will also bring the following skills and attributes to the position:

  • Excellent verbal & written communication, research and negotiation skills;


  • Ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously in diverse legal subject areas;


  • A team orientation that combines strong leadership, congeniality and creativity to drive and motivate others;


  • An outstanding work ethic and the ability to drive organizational change;


  • Enthusiasm for the mission of The Public Interest Network and its member organizations to effect grassroots social change, and a goal-oriented, activist orientation;


  • Comfort working with both the most senior staff (CEO, Executive Directors, other senior management staff) on major organizational strategies, and with training brand new staff on basic relevant legal principles in an understandable way; and


  • Prior experience working with or advising nonprofit organizations. Firsthand experience doing organizing, issue advocacy, or political work is a plus. 

Compensation & Benefits

Target annual compensation for this position is commensurate with the relevant professional experience and/or advanced degrees that a candidate has. 


Denver, CO preferred. Candidates in Boston, MA or Washington, DC also considered.


To apply online, click here. Please direct your cover letter to Betsy Grossman, General Counsel, and specify that you are applying for the Assistant General Counsel position. 

The Public Interest Network is a group of organizations that share a vision of a better future, a set of core values, and a strategic approach to making positive change. Click here: for things you should know about our network when you apply.

The Fund for the Public Interest is an equal opportunity employer.


Denver, CO
Boston, MA
Washington, DC


The Public Interest Network

Job category

Employment type
Full Time

0+ years


Start date
May 11, 2020

Apply by April 30, 2020