THE NEIGHBORHOOD DEFENDER SERVICE is creating NDS Texas, a new client-centered, holistic public defense office to address the growing humanitarian crisis at the southern border by providing criminal defense representation and Padilla consultations to individuals arrested by Texas law enforcement along that border.
NDS will represent non-citizen clients who are charged with crimes and who cannot afford to hire a lawyer. Clients will be represented by teams composed of lawyers, investigators, social workers, client advocates, and team administrators. NDS adheres to a client-centered approach to representation that emphasizes a heightened responsiveness to clients’ needs prior to arrest, while a case is pending, and after the case concludes. NDS is committed to addressing the comprehensive legal needs of clients. NDS Texas is funded by the Texas Indigent Defense Commission.
Most positions, including the Supervising Attorney, will be based in San Antonio. Periodic travel to border counties will be required, but most legal proceedings will initially occur via Zoom. NDS expects to operate a satellite office in one of the border counties.
1. Embrace NDS’ philosophy of client-centered, community-based, holistic representation and commitment to excellence.
2. Oversee teams charged with representing clients accused of crimes.
3. Train, supervise, and mentor staff, and coordinate the work of two teams made up of Senior Trial Attorneys, Staff Attorneys, Padilla Attorney, Social Workers, Client Advocate, Investigators, and Team Administrators.
4. Provide vigorous direct holistic representation to clients in a limited number of cases.
5. Ensure collaboration among all team members to obtain meaningful, comprehensive legal outcomes for clients.
6. Handle oversight responsibilities as the supervisory staff member for NDS Texas. It is anticipated that NDS Texas will have an initial staff of 18 individuals.
QUALIFICATIONS: The ideal candidate will bring:
1. A demonstrated commitment to criminal and immigration justice, indigent defense, racial equity, social justice issues, and a substantive understanding of the biases impacting our clients.
2. A demonstrated commitment to holistic defense and a client-centered approach to representation.
3. An ability to quickly build relationships with people of varying identities, income levels, races, and ethnicities.
4. At least seven years of experience representing clients in criminal cases.
5. Experience representing clients in criminal cases and litigating criminal cases at hearing and trial, including as lead counsel in at least five jury trials and five suppression hearings.
6. Experience working with and challenging expert witnesses in litigation.
7. Previous experience training, supervising, teaching, or mentoring attorneys or legal interns.
8. Active listening skills and ability to give and receive constructive feedback.
9. A high level of organizational and administrative skills to handle a high caseload.
10. Clear and effective communication skills, both orally and in writing.
11. An ability to work cooperatively in a team setting.
12. A license to practice law in Texas or in another state; and/or the capability of becoming licensed to practice law in the State of Texas within six months. Attorneys admitted to the Texas Bar with experience in criminal courts of Texas are strongly encouraged to apply.
Compensation: Compensation is commensurate with experience and is in adherence to the NDS compensation scale. Exceptional benefits package includes full medical and dental for employee and family, retirement, life and AD&D insurance, paid vacation, holiday, and sick time.
How to Apply:
Interested applicants should email a cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line, “Texas Supervising Attorney.”
Please send your application as one document, preferably PDF.
Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. For highest priority consideration, submit by November 18.
The Neighborhood Defender Service is committed to creating a diverse environment that reflects the community we serve. NDS is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply and will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status. NDS values and specifically seeks applicants who are people with incarcerated loved ones, formerly incarcerated people, people of color, women, queer, transgender, gender non‐ conforming, and gender fluid people.
Neighborhood Defender Service, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer.