Job Openings

POLICY ANALYST

Texas Indigent Defense Commission
Austin, Texas
State Job Title: Program Specialist IV
Monthly Salary Range: $4,583.34–$5,000

The Texas Indigent Defense Commission (TIDC) seeks a Policy Analyst (Program Specialist IV). The Policy Analyst plans, develops, and implements TIDC’s policy monitoring program. Provides highly complex (senior-level) consultative and technical assistance work to staff, government agencies, community organizations, and the public. Responsibilities include (1) evaluating indigent defense systems and procedures; (2) fostering accountability and quality legal representation; and (3) promoting compliance with the Fair Defense Act, rules promulgated by TIDC, and other applicable laws. Prepares and presents reports on findings and recommendations. Works collaboratively with judges, lawyers, and local officials to develop remediation plans in instances of noncompliance. Provides guidance on how to operate public defense more efficiently and effectively. May train others. Works under limited supervision, with moderate latitude for the use of initiative and independent judgment.

The Texas Indigent Defense Commission provides financial and technical support to counties to develop and maintain quality, cost-effective indigent defense systems that meet the needs of local communities and the requirements of the Constitution and state law. Learn more at tidc.texas.gov.

Essential Job Functions
  • Collects, compiles, and analyzes research data both on- and off-site to identify system strengths and weaknesses, as well as to determine compliance with program requirements, laws, and procedures.
  • Prepares and presents detailed, comprehensive written reports of findings and recommendations related to program activities.
  • Develops and presents training materials on program activities.
  • Performs related work as assigned and complies with all OCA policies.
Minimum Qualifications:
  • Graduation from an accredited four-year college or university.
  • Two years of graduate studies in law, public policy, or related field.
  • Superior written and oral communications skills.
  • Skill in use of Microsoft Office applications.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Doctor of Jurisprudence.
  • Knowledge of local, state, and federal laws relating to indigent defense.
  • Public defense experience or judicial clerkship.
  • Two years of experience in law, public policy, research, or related field.
  • Skill in conducting legal research.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills.

Note:
The following Military Occupation Specialty (MOS) codes are generally applicable to this position. Applicants must fully complete the summary of military experience applicable to the position to determine if minimum qualifications are met. 59A, 30,OS, 641X, 0205, 0640, 86MO Additional Military Crosswalk information can be accessed at http://www.hr.sao.texas.gov/Compensation/MilitaryCrosswalk/MOSC_ProgramManagement.pdf

To Apply:
Submit a complete application through CAPPS Recruit at this link https://capps.taleo.net/careersection/ex/jobdetail.ftl?job=00001667&tz=GMT-06%3A00.
Applications must be complete, including start and end dates of work experiences. Resumes may accompany applications in CAPPS but will not be accepted in lieu of completed applications. Following a screening of applications, interviews of qualified applicants who have submitted a completed state application will be scheduled. Only applicants interviewed will be notified of their selection or non-selection.

An applicant’s response to the question regarding Former Foster Youth on the state application is optional if you are applying for employment with the Office of Court Administration. The Office of Court Administration is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or disability in employment or in the provision of services. In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, any request for reasonable accommodations needed during the application process should be communicated to Human Resources. 1-800-RELAY TX (for hearing impaired).

The Office of Court Administration participates in E-Verify and will provide the Social Security Administration, and, if necessary, the Department of Homeland Security, with information from each new employee's Form I-9 to confirm work authorization.

Section 651.005 of the Government Code requires males, ages 18 through 25, to provide proof of their Selective Service registration or of their exemption from the requirement as a condition of state employment.

ASSISTANT FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER

Office of the Federal Public Defender
Western District of Texas (Austin)

THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER, Western District of Texas, is accepting applications for the position of assistant federal public defender to be stationed in the Austin office. 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.

Requirements
An assistant federal public defender must be: (1) a graduate of an accredited law school and admitted to practice in good standing before the highest court of a state; and (2) licensed to practice in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. Spanish-language fluency is required for this position. Appointment is subject to a satisfactory background investigation, including but not limited to an FBI name and fingerprint check and an IRS tax check.

Duties
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. 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 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. Experience in handling federal criminal cases is preferred, but not required.

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).

How to Apply
Qualified persons may apply by forwarding a letter of interest (mentioning announcement 18-08), résumé, and representative writing sample, along with 3 references. Litigation experience should be described in detail. Send completed application to: Maureen Scott Franco, Federal Public Defender, Western District of Texas, 504 Lavaca St., Suite 960, Austin, Texas 78701-2860. Electronic submissions will not be accepted. 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 Victoria B. Longoria, Personnel Administrator, at (210) 472-6700. More than one position may be filled from this announcement. Position announced February 9, 2018, subject to the availability of funds; open until filled.

Federal Public Defender is an equal-opportunity employer.

PARALEGAL OR ASSISTANT PARALEGAL

Office of the Federal Public Defender
Western District of Texas (Austin)

THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER, Western District of Texas, is accepting applications for the position of paralegal or assistant paralegal to be stationed in the Austin office. 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.

Requirements
To be considered for a paralegal position, candidates must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university or have a paralegal certificate from an accredited paralegal program. Spanish-language fluency is required for this position. Candidates must also possess:

  • a strong legal, administrative, or paralegal background;
  • excellent organization, communication, and administrative skills;
  • computer proficiency with word processing, email, legal research, and database maintenance, using Word and other Windows-based applications;
  • excellent command of English grammar and spelling;
  • the ability to work collegially; and
  • integrity, character, and good judgment.

To be considered for an assistant paralegal position, a person must be a high school graduate, and have at least two years of paralegal or comparable experience, or an educational substitute. A bachelor’s degree is preferred. Spanish-language fluency is required for this position. Candidates must also possess:

  • a working knowledge of law office operations, legal practices, methods and techniques, mental health issues, and capital legal system;
  • an understanding of paralegal and secretarial duties in a legal environment;
  • the skill and judgment in the analysis of assignments;
  • an understanding of criminal law, criminal procedure, and evidence;
  • experience as a paralegal performing progressively responsible paralegal duties;
  • the ability to work collegially; and
  • integrity, character, and good judgment.

Duties
The paralegal and assistant paralegal performs legal and administrative duties using legal terminology, procedures, and documents that include cite checking, draft motions and orders in criminal cases, and maintain electronic case files and databases. Paralegals and assistant paralegals assist the assistant federal public defenders in the daily activities of the office, performing duties that include assisting with case file management; gathering, organizing, summarizing and indexing of electronic and paper documents and other discovery materials. Paralegals also assist attorneys at hearings and trials; with client contact; interviewing witnesses; provide litigation support services using advanced software programs; and other duties as assigned. The full position qualifications statement with position description is available upon request.

Selection Criteria
The successful candidate will have a working knowledge of law office operations, legal practices, methods and techniques, and an understanding of criminal law, procedure and evidence. Prior federal court litigation experience is preferred. Employment is subject to a satisfactory background investigation, including an FBI name and fingerprint check.

Salary and Benefits
The starting salary of a paralegal salary will be commensurate with the experience and qualifications of the applicant, within a range from JSP-11, Step 1, to JSP-14, Step 1, and currently yielding $61,929 to $104,304 per annum. The starting salary of an assistant paralegal will be commensurate with the experience and qualifications of the applicant at JSP-9, Step 1, and currently yielding $51,186 per annum. The position is in the excepted service and does not carry the tenure rights of the competitive Civil Service. This position offers federal government employment benefits, including participation in health and life insurance, retirement, and the Thrift Savings Plan. Salary is payable only by Electronic Funds Transfer (direct deposit).

How to Apply
Persons may apply by forwarding a letter of interest (mentioning announcement 18-09), résumé, and writing sample, along with 3 references to: Maureen Scott Franco, Federal Public Defender, Western District of Texas, 504 Lavaca St., Suite 960, Austin, Texas 78701-2860. No electronically submitted applications will 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 Victoria B. Longoria, Personnel Administrator, at (210) 472-6700. More than one position may be filled from this announcement. Position announced February 8, 2018, subject to the availability of funds; open until filled.

Federal Public Defender is an equal-opportunity employer.

Research and Writing Specialist

Office of the Federal Public Defender
Western District of Texas (Del Rio)

THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER for the Western District of Texas is accepting applications for the position of research and writing specialist, to be stationed in the Del Rio office. 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.

Requirements
The research and writing specialist position is an attorney position. Applicants must be: (1) a graduate of an accredited law school; and (2) admitted to practice in good standing before the highest court of a state. Appointment is subject to a satisfactory background investigation, including but not limited to an FBI name and fingerprint check.

Duties
The primary duties of a research and writing specialist include: (1) drafting motions, memoranda, briefs, and petitions to be filed in the U.S. District Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of the United States; and (2) consulting with attorneys on legal issues arising in discovery, motion practice, trial, sentencing, and appeal. A research and writing specialist may be required to perform general paralegal duties, as well as other duties as assigned. The research and writing specialist is not an assistant federal public defender and does not ordinarily sign pleadings or make court appearances. The position requires occasional travel.

Selection Criteria
The successful applicant for research and writing specialist will have 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, and court and agency personnel. The successful applicant will have strong legal research and word processing skills, will be able to analyze legal issues from complex records, and will write clearly and concisely. Appellate writing experience or experience in handling federal criminal cases is preferred.

Salary and Benefits
The starting salary for a research and writing specialist falls within a range of $50,598 (JSP-9, Step 1) to $121,280 (JSP-15, Step 1). The salary of the successful applicant will commensurate with the person’s 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, retirement, and the Thrift Savings Plan. Salary is payable only by Electronic Funds Transfer (direct deposit).

How to Apply
Qualified persons may apply by forwarding a letter of interest (mentioning announcement 18-06), résumé, and representative writing sample, along with 3 references. Legal experience should be described in detail. Send completed application to: Maureen Scott Franco, Federal Public Defender, Western District of Texas, 2205 Veterans Blvd., Suite A-2, Del Rio, Texas 78840-3141. No electronic submissions will be considered. For applicants with disabilities, this organization provides reasonable accommodations, which are determined on a case-by-case basis. To request a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or interview process, contact Victoria B. Longoria, Personnel Administrator, at (210) 472-6700. More than one position may be filled from this announcement. Position announced February 9, 2018 subject to the availability of funds; open until filled.

Federal Public Defender is an equal-opportunity employer.

Research and Writing Specialist

Office of the Federal Public Defender
Western District of Texas (El Paso)

THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER for the Western District of Texas is accepting applications for the position of research and writing specialist, to be stationed in the El Paso office. 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.

Requirements
A research and writing specialist is an attorney position. Applicants must be: (1) a graduate of an accredited law school; (2) admitted to practice in good standing before the highest court of a state; and (3) licensed to practice in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas by the first day of duty. Appointment is subject to a satisfactory background investigation, including but not limited to an FBI name and fingerprint check.

Duties
The primary duties of a research and writing specialist include: (1) drafting motions, memoranda, briefs, and petitions to be filed in the U.S. District Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of the United States; and (2) consulting with attorneys on legal issues arising in discovery, motion practice, trial, sentencing, and appeal. A research and writing specialist may be required to perform general paralegal duties, as well as other duties as assigned. The research and writing specialist is not an assistant federal public defender and does not ordinarily sign pleadings or make court appearances. The position requires occasional travel.

Selection Criteria
The successful applicant for research and writing specialist will have 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, and court and agency personnel. The successful applicant will have strong legal research and word processing skills, will be able to analyze legal issues from complex records, and will write clearly and concisely. Appellate writing experience or experience in handling federal criminal cases is preferred.

Salary and Benefits
The starting salary for a research and writing specialist falls within a range of $50,598 (JSP-9, Step 1) to $121,280 (JSP-15, Step 1). The salary of the successful applicant will commensurate with the person’s 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, retirement, and the Thrift Savings Plan. Salary is payable only by Electronic Funds Transfer (direct deposit).

How to Apply
Qualified persons may apply by forwarding a letter of interest (mentioning announcement number 16-14), résumé, and representative writing sample, along with 3 references. Legal experience should be described in detail. Send completed application to: Maureen Scott Franco, Federal Public Defender, Western District of Texas, 700 E. San Antonio Ave., D-401, El Paso, Texas 79901-7020. For applicants with disabilities, this organization provides reasonable accommodations, which are determined on a case-by-case basis. To request a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or interview process, contact Victoria B. Longoria, Personnel Administrator, at (210) 472-6700. More than one position may be filled from this announcement. Position re-announced February 9, 2018 subject to the availability of funds; open until filled.

Federal Public Defender is an equal-opportunity employer.

Assistant Federal Public Defender

Office of the Federal Public Defender
Western District of Texas (El Paso)

THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER, Western District of Texas, is accepting applications for the position of assistant federal public defender to be stationed in the El Paso office. 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.

Requirements
An assistant federal public defender must be: (1) a graduate of an accredited law school and admitted to practice in good standing before the highest court of a state; and (2) licensed to practice in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. Spanish-language fluency is required for this position. Appointment is subject to a satisfactory background investigation, including but not limited to an FBI name and fingerprint check and an IRS tax check.

Duties
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. 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 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. Experience in handling federal criminal cases is preferred, but not required.

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).

How to Apply
Qualified persons may apply by forwarding a letter of interest (mentioning announcement number 16-12), résumé, and representative writing sample, along with 3 references. Litigation experience should be described in detail. Send completed application to: Maureen Scott Franco, Federal Public Defender, Western District of Texas, 700 E. San Antonio Ave., D-401, El Paso, Texas 79901-7020. 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 Victoria B. Longoria, Personnel Administrator, at (210) 472-6700. More than one position may be filled from this announcement. Position open until filled.

Federal Public Defender is an equal-opportunity employer.

Attorney: Staff Public Defender—Rio Grande City

The TRLA Texas Rural Defender Service seeks an entry-level attorney for its office serving Starr County. The Starr Regional Public Defender Program, from its office in Rio Grande City, serves Starr, Jim Hogg and Duval Counties. This position will be located in the TRLA office in Rio Grande City. With caseload controls, staff investigators and a solid litigation budget, the program emphasizes zealous, holistic advocacy in a rural environment. The program costs are split equally between the state and the participating counties.

Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, with 175 attorneys, is the largest federally-funded civil legal services program in the nation, covering a 68-county service area in Southwest Texas. Indigent defense services through the TRLA non-profit corporation began approximately ten years ago, and have now been extended to 8 counties. The non-profit arrangement establishes a strong measure of independence for defender staff, backed by a firm with a strong national reputation for vigorous advocacy. TRLA provides its defender clients the full range of representation, both civil and criminal, including advice on the immigration consequences of a criminal conviction. A mental health component has recently been added to the program.

TRLA is an equal opportunity employer and provides a comprehensive range of employee benefits, including health care coverage, law school loan repayment benefits, continuing legal education and training, and a 401k pension program.

The primary responsibilities are:

  • Serve as lead counsel of record in up to 228 misdemeanor cases per year;
  • Assist more experienced lawyers in felony and juvenile cases; and
  • Try cases to a verdict.

Qualifications:

  • Licensed to practice law in Texas or willing to take the next available Texas bar exam;
  • Preference for an attorney who is professionally functional in the Spanish language;
  • Proficiency in the Windows operating system, Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint, and legal research software; and
  • Completion of six hours of continuing legal education in criminal law within the twelve months preceding service as a Public Defender staff attorney.

To apply, email a cover letter, resume and references to employment@trla.org.


Attorney: Staff Public Defender—BEEVILLE

TRLA seeks an experienced, felony-qualified attorney for its Regional Public Defender office in Beeville. The Bee Regional Public Defender Program, from its office in Beeville, serves Bee, Live Oak, and McMullen Counties, and will soon serve Refugio County as well. With caseload controls, staff investigators and a solid litigation budget, the program emphasizes zealous advocacy in a rural environment. The program costs are split equally between the state and the participating counties.

Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, with 175 attorneys, is the largest civil legal services program in the nation, covering a 68-county service area in Southwest Texas. Indigent defense services through the TRLA non-profit corporation began approximately ten years ago, and have now been extended to 8 counties. The non-profit arrangement establishes a strong measure of independence for defender staff, backed by a firm with a strong national reputation for zealous advocacy. TRLA provides its defender clients the full range of representation, both civil and criminal, including advice on the immigration consequences of a criminal conviction. A mental health component is being added to the program in the fall.

The primary responsibilities are:

  • Serve as lead counsel of record in up to 50 felony cases, 100 misdemeanor cases, and 10 juvenile cases per year;
  • Mentor less experienced attorneys in the program; and
  • Try cases to a verdict.

Qualifications:

  • Licensed to practice law in Texas or willing to take the next available Texas bar exam;
  • One year of criminal litigation experience or comparable academic or clinical experience in criminal law;
  • Have served as lead counsel in at least 5 felony trials before a jury;
  • Preference for an attorney who is professionally functional in the Spanish language;
  • Proficiency in the Windows operating system, Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint, and legal research software; and
  • Completion of six hours of continuing legal education in criminal law within the twelve months preceding service as a Public Defender staff attorney.

To apply, email a cover letter, resume and references to employment@trla.org.


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