Fresno Legal Fellow/Staff Attorney

Root & Rebound seeks a legal fellow/attorney looking to build their social justice career and lawyering skills, to support women of color impacted by mass incarceration in Central Valley.

About Root & Rebound (R&R):

Root & Rebound’s mission is to restore power and resources to the families and communities most harmed by mass incarceration through legal advocacy, public education, policy reform and litigation— a model rooted in the needs and expertise of people who are directly impacted. You can read more about our work in our 2020 Annual Report or on our website: RootandRebound.org.

Employment Status: This is a full-time, exempt role, reporting into the Deputy Director of California Programs.

Location: Fresno, California. This position is temporarily remote, with plans to be at least 50% in the office by August 2021 and 100% in the office by Fall 2021, depending on the progression of the pandemic and the health and safety of our staff and clients. R&R has strong covid precautions and procedures to prioritize the health and safety of our staff, clients and community members.

About FRWEI and the Fresno Site Director & Staff Attorney position:

The Fresno Legal Fellow/Staff attorney will be a key member of the three person team who run the Fresno Reentry Women & Employment Initiative (FRWEI). FRWEI is a program launched in 2018 that provides system-impacted women residing in the Central Valley holistic reentry legal services, including employment, financial, legal, and social services, as well as helping them engage in the policy reform process.

This position is a unique opportunity for a junior attorney to do highly impactful reentry legal services in the Central Valley. R&R’s practice is unique in multiple ways: we are holistic, focusing on the many legal barriers that women face post-incarceartion, and we also take a feminist lens to our FRWEI work, focusing on areas where women need the most support: employment, housing, and family law. This is an amazing opportunity for a young attorney to engage in community lawyering and maximize impact in the Central Valley.

Our ideal candidate is compassionate, personable, and passionate about advancing the rights of women of color with criminal records and expanding R&R’s services, partnerships, and impact across the Central Valley. A successful candidate in this role will be able to communicate effectively, have organizational strategies, and be open to regular check-ins via video conference calls with various members of the R&R team.

Primary Responsibilities & Duties:

  • Legal Services & Advocacy
    • Conduct holistic legal intakes to assess for a client’s reentry legal needs and develop an appropriate legal services plan, in the areas of: family and children, employment, housing, parole and probation, court debt, immigration, state identification, and any other issue area relevant to their successful reentry;
    • Carry and independently manage a client caseload;
    • Coordinate, or lead, where appropriate, regional know-your-rights trainings and legal clinics on key reentry topics; and
    • Work with and support the Central Valley Policy Advocate & Economic Security Coach and Women’s Support and Social Services Manager to further develop the wraparound model to serve women in reentry.
  • FRWEI Program Administration
    • Track client progress and data using Clio;
    • Gain familiarity and ensure attainability of all grant deliverables; and
    • Support in drafting grant proposals and grant reports to ensure continued funding for the project.
  • Community Outreach and Partnership:
    • Elevate the barriers faced by our clients in reentry to create structural and policy change that advance second chance opportunities and social justice;
    • Build partnerships and relationships with Central Valley stakeholders who may be aligned with Root & Rebound’s work and mission, including, but not limited to, social and legal services providers, government organizations, foundations and directly-impacted organizations;
    • Expand and maintain strong relationships with local law firms, law school clinics, volunteer attorneys, and legal service organizations; and
    • In collaboration with the R&R policy team, and as capacity allows, push for policy reform on issues affecting justice-impacted women, including speaking with media or congressional representatives, or participating in communications campaigns.
  • Fundraising and Resource Development
    • Assist in efforts to secure and maintain funding for the organization;
    • Work with R&R team members to write and submit grant proposals;
    • Maintain necessary records for grant reporting and audits;
    • Seek and elevate potential new funding opportunities to sustain and grow R&R’s broader Central Valley work;
    • Support public relations, development, communications, and storytelling projects as needed; and
    • Other duties as requested based on department and/or organizational need.

Qualifications:

  • Licensed to practice law in the state of CA, in good standing;
  • Experience with legal aid, public defense, and nonprofit work, with direct experience working with system-impacted individuals preferred;
  • Demonstrated dedication to social, racial, and economic justice;
  • Proficiency in Spanish;
  • Strong work ethic, resilience, and determination;
  • Flexible and able to prioritize work effectively with excellent time-management; and
  • Willingness to travel periodically throughout California and R&R’s Oakland office, when it is safe to do so.

Compensation & Benefits:

The Fresno Legal Fellow/Staff Attorney role is a full-time, exempt position, with a competitive salary commensurate with experience. Employment benefits at R&R include:

  • Medical, vision and dental care;
  • Relocation Stipend, if necessary;
  • Employer-sponsored 403(b) retirement plan;
  • Internal and external professional development opportunities;
  • Three (3) weeks of paid time off per year, plus holiday closures, which includes additional office closure around the December holidays;
  • Office closures for seven (7) federal holidays, Juneteenth, and Indigenous Peoples’ Day;
  • Opportunities to engage in professional development and PD opportunities for all staff;
  • Four (4) hours of Activism Time each month for employees to engage in social justice activities of their choosing, pending supervisor approval; and
  • Sabbatical Program for eligible employees after five (5) years of service.

Application Instructions:

To apply for this position, please send a resume, cover letter, a writing sample, and at least three references with contact information in an email with “Fresno Legal Fellow/Staff Attorney” in the email subject line to Veena Gursahani at vgursahani@rootandrebound.org. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled. No phone calls, please.

 

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Root & Rebound is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from all qualified individuals including formerly incarcerated and/or system-involved individuals, people of color, persons with disabilities, ethnic and religious minorities, women, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and gender variant individuals. Individuals with lived experience with the criminal justice system and with deep connection to Fresno County are strongly encouraged to apply.

Fresno Legal Fellow/Staff Attorney
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