Please login/register to apply for this job.
12 May 2022

Full-Time First Assistant Federal Public Defender

HRBoston Boston, Massachusetts, United States

Job Description


The Federal Public Defender for the Districts of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire is accepting letters of interest for a full-time First Assistant Federal Public Defender. The successful applicant will be selected through a nation-wide search. All eligible attorneys interested in the position are encouraged to apply.

The First Assistant Federal Public Defender is a high-level manager who reports to, and collaborates with, the Federal Defender. They collaborate with other members of management to carry out the mission of the office. The Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire Federal Defender Offices, are federal agencies within the U.S. Court system, with approximately 50 employees in three states.

The salary of the First Assistant is commensurate with that of a supervisory assistant U.S. Attorney with similar qualifications and experience, and cannot exceed that of the Federal Public Defender. The First Assistant can expect a Salary between $174, 310 to $176, 200 based on experience and demonstrated skills. This position is classified as a highly sensitive position and retention of the position will require the successful completion of a background investigation. The position includes a generous federal benefits package.

The First Assistant position is the principal assistant to the Federal Public Defender, and is a supervisory position. In addition to providing zealous, professional legal representation to people charged with Federal criminal offense, this position also assumes exemplary writing skills and advanced Trial Skills. Additionally, the First Assistant is responsible for the operations of the defender organization as a whole in the absence of the Federal Public Defender. The First Assistant acts as a liaison between:

  • the defender organization and the court;
  • court personnel;
  • other related agencies;
  • members of the CJA Panel and the private bar;
  • Defender Services;
  • other defender organizations;
  • clients and their families; and
  • members of the general public on administrative, institutional, and case related matters.

This position shares the responsibility for the supervision and management of the daily operations of the organization, supervises attorneys and support staff, and communicates in a supervisory capacity with the court, opposing counsel, clients, and the families of clients concerning case related issues.

As designated by the Defender, this position may initiate personnel actions involving all staff members when required. Actions may include hiring, performance appraisals, mediation and negotiation, disciplinary actions, and employee job termination. The First Assistant may actively participate in financial and procurement management, and may oversee operations of the defender organization to ensure costs are kept within allocated budget levels. The First Assistant may provide training to staff and CJA Panel members for a range of topics to include current case law development, advocacy in the courtroom, and developing advanced skills in written, oral, and interpersonal communications. The First Assistant also analyzes organizational structure and recommends policy implementation to the Defender, as well as serving as a liaison to the Defender for office related issues, including conducting case reviews. This position carries a caseload and performs all other duties as assigned.

The successful applicant will have an established capacity or clearly demonstrated aptitude for law office management including excellence with interpersonal communications, a commitment to the representation of indigent accused persons, and a reputation for integrity. They will be organized, fair, and demonstrate an aptitude in technology. They will promote ongoing development toward the effective and efficient practice of law, management, and operations.


We are committed to cultivating a culture of acceptance and connectedness that honors the diverse backgrounds of the people we represent. You are expected to be a regular presence in our Offices and you are expected to be vaccinated against COVID-19. This is not a telework position.

We value diversity and a commitment to equality, and we believe better legal representation occurs when members of the defense team have diverse backgrounds and experiences. In recruiting members of our team, we welcome the full spectrum of humanity. We embrace the unique contributions that you can bring, including your culture, ethnicity, education, opinions, race, sex, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, nation of origin, age, languages spoken, veteran’s status, religion, disability, and economic status.


In addition to exceptional trial and writing skills, you have a minimum of 5 years experience as a lawyer. You are a trusted and reliable manager who values professionalism and who consistently uses sound judgment to carry out responsibilities. You partner with other members of management, keep confidences, and are comfortable acting both independently and as a member of our team so the office can give exceptional legal services to the people we represent. You not only see the problems, but also the solutions, and you harness creativity, dedication, and persistence to overcome challenges. You must demonstrate considerable resourcefulness, efficiency, discretion, initiative, creativity, curiosity, assertiveness and compassion. You interact with and supervise others with empathy and understanding while maintaining high standards.

You value diversity in our workforce and to our mission to give exceptional services to people accused or convicted of federal crimes. You must demonstrate experience with and an ongoing commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging through personnel skill development and a willingness to share tools within the office to create a cohesive environment for all.

How to Apply

Applicants must send an e-mail titled “First Assistant” with:
  1. A Cover Letter;
  2. A Resume; and
  3. Form AO-78 (found at
  4. Send all items listed above to
*No Calls Please. Applicants who apply without submitting all three documents will not be considered. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Priority consideration will be given to applications received by June 17, 2022. We are an equal opportunity employer.

Job Types: Full-Time. Job Tags: attorneys, employee benefits, interpersonal skills, law, and Legal. Salaries: Not Disclosed.

Job expires in 29 days.

37 total views, 1 today

Apply for this Job