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Director, Legal Training & Technical Assistance

Department: Legal Programs
Location: Remote

About KIND:

Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) is a global leader in the protection of unaccompanied refugee and migrant children. Launched in 2008, KIND champions a world in which every childís rights and well-being are protected throughout their journey to safety. KIND has accepted over 23,000 referrals of children seeking legal representation in their immigration proceedings. KIND has welcomed more than 41,000 attendees to trainings since its founding, cultivating partnerships with over 670 law firms, corporate legal departments, law schools, and bar associations across the country.

KINDís social services program ensures that migrant and refugee children Ė who have often endured trauma Ė receive counseling, educational support, medical care and other comprehensive services.

To address the root causes of child migration from Central America and strengthen protection of unaccompanied children, KIND advocates for policy changes and educates lawmakers, the media, and the broader public on the conditions that drive these children to flee their home countries. KIND supports children returning to their home countries by connecting them to essential support services and sponsors gender-based violence prevention programs in Central America to protect children in countries of origin and transit.

KIND is also building upon its expertise in the protection of unaccompanied children to encourage the development of pro bono initiatives across Europe in partnership with European NGOs.

Position Summary:

KIND seeks a Director, Legal Training & Technical Assistance that will encompass two distinct but complementary functions: legal training and technical assistance, and legal and policy strategy.  Housed in KINDís Strategy and Special Programs (SSP) team, the Director will report directly to the Senior Director, Legal Training and Technical Assistance, with close collaboration with the Senior Director, Legal Strategy, and the Senior Counsel. The Director will provide expertise and program oversight to KINDís training, case specific technical assistance with regard to issues facing unaccompanied children, as well as litigation.


Essential Functions:

The responsibilities of Director, Legal Training & Technical Assistance will include, but will not be limited to, the following:

Provision of Training

  • Provide expert legal assistance and training to KINDís Legal Programs team, as well as to law firm and corporate partners in cooperation with KINDís pro bono coordinating staff, to support and enhance KINDís provision of free legal services to immigrant and refugee children.  The role involves the following activities:
      • In-person and on-line/webinar training on legal issues in refugee, asylum, and other aspects of immigration law, particularly with respect to unaccompanied children in immigration proceedings and in the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement.
      • providing one-on-one and written technical assistance on legal developments and case-specific concerns.
  • In coordination with the Senior Director for Legal Training and Technical Assistance, research training needs, monitor developments in effective adult and professional education theory, and develop effective training modes to reach the target audience of practitioners.

Provision of Technical Assistance

  • Provide expert legal technical assistance to KIND Legal Programs team staff by:
      • Responding directly to questions, connecting staff members to other sources of expertise, and facilitating contact with outside experts as needed.
      • Being available by phone/email and during ďoffice hoursĒ for case questions posed individually by staff.
  • Provide technical support to law firms and corporate partners on an as needed basis.
  • Lead, guide, or participate in periodic group calls with all legal staff on thematic legal issues and monitor trends and new developments with respect to issues involving unaccompanied children and ORR custody.
  • In coordination with the Senior Director, Legal Training and Technical Assistance and the other members of the SSP team, assist in the development of legal manuals and other guidance materials (model filing samples, checklists, guidance memos for practitioners, etc.).

Litigation and Strategy Input

  • In coordination with other Legal Programs Management Team members, identify issues in need of systemic public policy advocacy, including litigation, and communicate about such issues with KINDís Policy, Advocacy, and Communications Teams.
  • Draft and review technical elements of advocacy communications, including e.g. regulatory comments.
  • Represent KIND at conferences, panels, and other meetings and public speaking events, in coordination with the Policy, Advocacy, and Communications Team and in collaboration with partners.
  • In coordination with the Senior Director, Legal Strategy, engage in litigation-related activities such as identifying issues of relevance and challenges impacting KINDís work, making recommendations for KINDís involvement in specific matters, drafting testimonial declarations, drafting and/or reviewing court filings.
  • Advise and assist law firm and corporate pro bono partners in the preparation of appellate or amicus briefs in support of KINDís mission.


Member of Legal Programs Management Team

  • Participate in general management of KINDís Legal Programs team, under the direction of the Vice President, Legal Programs.
  • In coordination with the Senior Director, Legal Training and Technical Assistance, establish goals and priorities for KINDís technical assistance and legal training programs.
  • Play leadership role in working collaboratively and effectively intra-component within Legal Programs, and inter-component with other components, including Operations, Finance, Development, and Communications.
  • Serve as a key partner to KINDís leadership in helping to foster a culture of respect and appreciation for the diverse contributions of others within the organization and for the institution and the mission.
  • Model informed and constructive communication; effective and honest partnership wherein feedback is valued and constructively and regularly given and received.
  • Actively contribute to a safe environment where ideas, innovation, and dissent are respected and consistently shared.

Qualifications and Requirements:

  • Licensed attorney in good standing.
  • Minimum of 8 yearsí experience in the immigration field, preferably including representing immigrant children.
  • Expertise in humanitarian immigration legal claims on behalf of children, including Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, asylum, U visa, and T visa claims.
  • Federal Court litigation experience.
  • Experience working with a range of legal practitioners, including law firm or in-house corporate practitioners.
  • Exceptional written and oral communication skills, including in both formal (litigation, regulatory) and more directly interpersonal (training, mentoring) formats.
  • Experience formulating and presenting trainings and legal guidance and providing technical assistance on immigration law, policy, and procedure to lawyers, paralegals and others.
  • Excellent organizational skills, with ability to work on multiple projects in a deadline-oriented environment.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with and advise attorneys with varying levels of immigration and legal experience.
  • Willing and able to travel occasionally to the ten field offices or other locations within the United States.
  • Ability to use Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint or contemporary suite of skills, and willingness to learn new technology and case management tools such as Legal Server.

KIND requires all staff be COVID vaccinated with the exception of those who have medical or religious beliefs exemptions.

Salary range:  $130,080 - $162,600 dependent on experience

Application Instructions:

Please be advised that an employment application will need to be submitted along with your resume and cover letter, in order to be considered for the desired role. (Acceptable to request writing sample for certain roles)


KIND has an organization-wide commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. We strive to create a work environment where everyone has a sense of belonging. Individuals from historically underrepresented or underserved communities are strongly encouraged to apply.







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