FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(scroll to bottom of page for Executive Director
Boise, August 1, 2013:
Advocates for the West, a Boise-based non-profit public interest environmental law firm, is celebrating its first decade of success by announcing expansion plans to increase its staff and its capability to provide legal counsel and representation to conservation groups on environmental strategies around the American West.
“We began operations ten years ago and have achieved many successes in enforcing our nation’s environmental laws and protecting public lands, wildlife, and clean water in Idaho and across the West,” said founder and Executive Director Laird Lucas. “I am proud to announce that we are now expanding our staff and operations to become even more effective in the next decade.”
Through the staff expansion, Advocates for the West will have senior staff located in three offices, including Portland, Oregon, Washington, D.C., as well as its Boise headquarters. “We have already hired a new staff attorney to work with our senior attorney Laurie Rule in our Portland office,” said Lucas, “and we have added a presence in Washington D.C., where our senior attorney Todd Tucci is focusing on public lands policy, including energy development and wildlife protection.”
The staff expansion includes hiring a new Executive Director as Lucas moves to a newly-created role as Litigation Supervisor. “Laird’s core strength and skills are in providing top-flight legal strategy and litigation skills to our clients, and he will focus on that moving forward, while we bring on a new Executive Director to carry out the increasingly-demanding tasks of fundraising, administration and communication that this growing organization needs,” said Board President Eric Younger, a Ketchum resident and specialist in non-profit management.
The transition in hiring a new Executive Director is expected to take about six months, Younger said. “We will be conducting a national search to find a candidate with the knowledge, skills and passion to lead Advocates for the West through its second decade of success,” he explained.
Younger added that Advocates for the West will also be expanding its Board of Directors through selective addition of people skilled in communications, fundraising, and geographic diversity. “We are looking to add folks to our board that can help support our growth into new areas, including the West Coast and back in D.C., as well as in Idaho,” he said.
Advocates for the West began as a non-profit public interest environmental law firm in 2003, and since then has racked up victory after victory for its conservation clients. Highlights of its successes include:
• Spearheading the legal strategies that blocked Exxon Mobil from plans to ship over 200 “mega-loads” of tar sands processing equipment up the Wild and Scenic corridor along Idaho’s Lochsa and Clearwater rivers;
• Acting as national leaders in pushing the federal government to adopt long-term management plans to protect the greater sage-grouse from habitat losses across 100 million acres of public lands in the sagebrush ecosystem;
• Blocking the Bush Administration from repealing environmental protections and public involvement in grazing administration on 160 million acres across the interior West;
• Winning one of the largest penalties, $2 million, ever levied by a court against a polluter for citizen enforcement actions under the Clean Water Act, after proving that Canadian company Atlanta Gold violated water quality standards thousands of times through pollution discharges in the Boise River watershed;
• Using science showing that domestic sheep spread fatal diseases to Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep to force federal agencies to close “high risk” allotments to sheep grazing in Idaho’s Hells Canyon and Salmon River areas;
• Winning a court injunction closing critical winter habitat in the Selkirk Mountain of northern Idaho and Washington to protect endangered woodland caribou from increasingly-powerful snow machines;
• Recently winning a ruling requiring the Forest Service to address snow machine impacts on National Forests across the West to protect wildlife and quiet winter recreation.
“Through our expansion, we will deliver an even higher level of legal counsel and representation to our partners and clients, not only in Idaho but across the West and in Washington, D.C.,” said Executive Director Lucas. “After our initial decade, we are now a mature and strong organization that I believe is a vital part of protecting public lands, wildlife, and clean air and clean water around the West.”
“Advocates for the West is our go-to partner when we need legal strategies and representation,” said Justin Hayes, Program Director at Idaho Conservation League who recently joined the Board of Directors of Advocates of the West. “This is an exciting time of growth and development for this organization, which I am proud to be assisting,” he added.
Position Description: Executive Director
Advocates for the West (AW), a Boise-based nonprofit public interest environmental law firm, is searching for an Executive Director who will provide visionary leadership to an organization moving into its second decade of successful, aggressive litigation. The new Executive Director will ensure the organization meets financial objectives associated with its plans to expand and increase its impact on ecological issues of the interior West.
The Executive Director (ED) is responsible for the oversight and implementation of all programmatic work in addition to the administration and management of our offices and financial development activities. The priority of this position is to ensure that there are sufficient funding and management structures in place to assure continued programmatic growth and the furthering of AW’s mission.
Major Duties and Responsibilities:
- Organizational Leadership and Management (approximately 30% of the time)
- Fundraising and Donor Relations (approximately 30% of the time)
- Program/Litigation Management and Strategy (approximately 20% of the time)
- Public Education and Strategic Partnerships (approximately 10% of the time)
- Board Development (approximately 5% of the time)
- Human Resources (approximately 5% of the time)
Supervision and Guidance:
The ED functions under the supervision of the Board of Directors. The ED is expected to carry out most job functions independently. Performance evaluation is based upon successfully meeting the objectives established by the Board. Evaluation of the position will be provided annually by the Board.
- Education: University degree in ecology, environmental sciences or a related field. JD or MBA strongly preferred.
- Prior Experience: A minimum of five years work in non-profit management or similar experience in a law setting.
- Knowledge: Strong working knowledge of ecological issues of the interior West. Working knowledge of developing/coordinating legal strategies. Demonstrated ability to provide leadership and turn an organizational vision into tangible plans.
- Skills and Abilities:
- Ability to independently assess needs and develop creative solutions
- Ability to represent AW effectively with public, funders and clients
- Proven ability to successfully manage a professional staff
- Demonstrated history of providing support for or leadership of communication campaigns
- Proven fundraising capacity
- Excellent oral and written communication
- Organizational and administrative skills
Competitive at a national scale with comparable organizations; salary will be based on experience and qualifications. Full benefits package including medical insurance, liberal vacation/sick leave policy, employer-sponsored retirement plan.
Full-time salaried position, based in Boise, Idaho. Must be willing to travel approximately 10-20% of the time.
Application Process and Deadlines:
To apply, submit a cover letter and resume/CV with references via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. No calls please!
Applications will be reviewed and responded to on a rolling basis until October 15, 2013, unless position is filled earlier. Expected start date is January 1, 2014, or earlier.