Staff Attorney

January 27, 2020

Job Announcement

ACLU of Colorado Hiring Two Staff Attorneys

American Civil Liberties Union Foundation of Colorado seeks dynamic, skilled, mission-driven applicants for two full-time Staff Attorney positions. The successful applicants will join our staff of 26 in our Denver office. Under the direction of the Legal Director,  the Staff Attorneys will participate in litigation and legal advocacy to further the ACLU’s mission of protecting the civil rights and civil liberties of all persons in Colorado.

Founded in 1920, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is the nation’s foremost defender of constitutional rights and civil liberties. ACLU of Colorado, the Colorado affiliate of the ACLU, has served since 1952 as the state’s guardian of freedom, working in the courts, in the legislature, and in communities across the state to protect and advance civil rights and civil liberties for all. ACLU of Colorado is a strong, growing organization with thousands of members, supporters, and activists. For more information about the work of ACLU of Colorado and the civil liberties principles we uphold, please visit our website at

Commitment To Diversity And Inclusion

ACLU of Colorado is an equal opportunity employer. We value a diverse workforce and promote an inclusive culture. We believe that having a board, staff, and volunteer base with diverse personal and professional backgrounds enhances our ability to meet our mission and creates an environment where all members of our community can thrive. We strongly encourage applications from people of color, immigrants, women, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ community, those who have been formerly incarcerated, and other members of underrepresented and marginalized groups.

ACLU of Colorado does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status, and record of arrest or conviction. We are committed to providing a work environment free from discrimination and harassment.


  • Participate with ACLU legal staff and ACLU volunteer attorneys in ACLU litigation in state and federal court, including all aspects of discovery, motion practice, trials and evidentiary hearings, and drafting briefs in trial and appellate courts
  • Participate in all aspects of developing cutting edge legal cases, including selecting issues appropriate for litigation, conducting factual and legal research, interviewing potential clients and witnesses, and identifying and developing legal theories
  • Present selected potential cases to the ACLU Legal Panel for evaluation
  • Draft legal memoranda, demand letters, and advocacy letters
  • Coordinate and work with ACLU volunteer cooperating attorneys
  • Supervise law student interns and volunteers
  • Review and investigate selected requests for legal assistance
  • Develop and maintain relationships with legal staff at National ACLU, its projects, and other ACLU affiliates
  • Provide support and work with ACLU staff in our Communications, Campaign, and Policy departments, in furtherance of our integrated advocacy model, which combines legal advocacy, public communications, and policy advocacy for maximum impact
  • Serve as ACLU spokesperson in public speaking events and with the press, as assigned

Required Qualifications

  • Juris Doctor degree
  • Membership in the Colorado bar or ability to secure membership in the Colorado bar within one year of employment.
  • Exceptional writing skills, both for legal and non-legal audiences
  • Superb research and analytical skills
  • A commitment to diversity; a personal approach that values individuals and respects differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, ability, and socio-economic circumstance, and the ability to work with diverse individuals within the organization and the broader community

Desired Qualifications

The successful applicants will have many (though probably not all) of the following qualifications and attributes:

  • At least five years of significant experience litigating complex civil cases
  • Significant expertise in and substantive knowledge of constitutional law
  • Strong, demonstrated commitment to public interest law and the mission of the ACLU of Colorado; in-depth knowledge of and experience with a wide range of civil liberties and civil rights issues
  • Significant in-depth experience or legal expertise in a specialized area that is within the ACLU’s mission
  • Exceptional oral advocacy skills, with both legal and non-legal audiences
  • Demonstrated ability to research, develop, apply, and implement novel legal theories and strategies
  • Experience working and communicating with marginalized or vulnerable communities
  • Proficiency and comfort with personal computers, using Windows and Microsoft Office software
  • Facility for administrative work including coordination with volunteer attorneys and supervision of support staff, law students, interns, and office volunteers
  • Experience successfully mentoring or supervising interns, law students, and less experienced attorneys
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively and professionally with paralegals, legal assistants, volunteers, clients, and fellow attorneys
  • Willingness to work beyond the 9 to 5 hours of the normal work day, including evening and weekend meetings and/or events
  • Fluency in Spanish is highly desirable

Compensation and Benefits

Salary ranges from low sixties for a beginning lawyer to the high seventies, depending on skills and experience, in accordance with parameters of the nationwide ACLU and the Denver area nonprofit sector.  Benefits include 401(k) with matching contribution and generous paid vacation and sick leave. ACLU pays 100% of the premiums for medical and dental insurance, as well as life and long-term disability insurance.

How to apply for these Staff Attorney positions

To apply, send a resume, legal writing sample, and a cover letter that may include an explanation of your particular interest in the ACLU and its mission.  You should also include three references, with email address and phone number, and identify their relationship to you. Submit applications by email to with “ACLU staff attorney application” in the subject line.

Resumes will be reviewed on a rolling basis beginning February 17, 2020, and the positions will remain open until filled. ACLU of Colorado will confirm the receipt of applications by email. No telephone calls please. Qualified applicants will be contacted directly for an interview.