Job Opening: Wildlands Attorney in Moab or Salt Lake City

Immediate Opening: 1/25/2021

The Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA) has an immediate opening for a full-time Wildlands Attorney. Interested applicants should email a cover letter, resume, law school transcript, 3–5-page writing sample, and 3 references to Neal Clark, Wildlands Program Director, at hiring@suwa.org. The deadline to submit your application is February 28, 2021.

Job Description

SUWA’s Wildlands Attorney is a non-litigation position with a focus on monitoring Bureau of Land Management activities throughout Utah—including Bears Ears National Monument, the San Rafael Swell, and the West Desert—and challenging project proposals that would adversely impact wilderness-quality lands. The position is unique in that it involves a combination of policy, advocacy, legal research and writing, on-the-ground expertise, relationship building with federal agency staff, and coordination with Tribal and conservation partners. The Wildlands Attorney drafts and submits comments on proposed federal land actions, including site-specific projects and land use planning processes; files administrative appeals, including legal research, briefing, and coordination with expert witnesses; and interacts with federal agency staff, project proponents, scientific experts, state and local elected officials, and Tribal and conservation partners. The Wildlands Attorney is also involved in legislative efforts, strategic organizational decision making, and issue-specific campaigns, working closely with colleagues in SUWA’s Moab, Salt Lake City, and Washington, D.C. offices.

Responsibilities

  • Track proposed projects on Bureau of Land Management lands throughout Utah. Engage with agency staff, draft comments, and develop strategies in order to modify or challenge projects that would adversely affect wilderness-quality lands.
  • Cultivate expertise on lands proposed for wilderness designation in America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act­. Defend these lands through strategic policy and legal actions while advocating for permanent protection as designated wilderness.
  • Develop professional relationships with agency staff through regular communication, meetings, and field tours.
  • Organize field tours with agency staff, Tribal and conservation partners, media, and legislative staff.
  • Represent SUWA in administrative appeals before the Department of Interior Board of Land Appeals. Conduct legal research, document review, and draft legal filings. Negotiate with opposing counsel.
  • Develop media strategies and represent SUWA in the media.
  • Support SUWA’s litigation and legislative efforts through on-the-ground expertise.
  • Assist SUWA’s efforts to organize activists in support of America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act and other SUWA campaigns.

Requirements

  • Demonstrated interest in environmentalism or conservation—passion for wilderness and public lands preferred.
  • Interest in building professional relationships with agency staff, and Tribal and conservation partners—including frequent communications, meetings, and field tours.
  • Willingness to travel throughout Utah one or more times per month for meetings with colleagues, federal agency staff, Tribal and conservation partners, and to conduct fieldwork—including in remote, backcountry locations.
  • Excellent writing, analytical, and legal research skills.
  • Ability to communicate complex issues to the media and public.
  • Good nature, sense of humor, and enthusiasm for working on a team.
  • Initiative, self-direction, attention to detail, and an ability to meet deadlines.
  • Ability to handle a substantial and ever-changing workload that will, at times, require working nights and weekends.
  • High degree of professional integrity, courtesy, and respect.
  • Willingness to make a minimum two-year commitment.

Education, Experience, and Salary

  • 0-5 years of experience—admitted to practice law in Utah, or willingness to sit for or waive into the Utah State Bar
  • Salary range: $48,000—$70,000 (dependent on experience). SUWA provides vacation, holiday, and sick leave; health insurance; retirement benefits; and disability. Relocation reimbursement provided.

Location and Start Date

Moab (preferred) or Salt Lake City. Anticipated start: April 5, 2021
*Due to COVID-19, relocation date is flexible

SUWA is committed to workplace diversity and inclusion. SUWA is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law.


SUWA is a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of the outstanding wilderness at the heart of the Colorado Plateau, and the management of these lands in their natural state for the benefit of all Americans. SUWA promotes local and national recognition of the region’s unique character through research and public education; supports both administrative and legislative initiatives to permanently protect Colorado Plateau wild places within the National Park and National Wilderness Preservation Systems, or by other protective designations where appropriate; builds support for such initiatives on both the local and national level; and provides leadership within the conservation movement through uncompromising advocacy for wilderness preservation.

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