View Our Website View All Jobs

Fellow, Census Litigation and Advocacy, Democracy Program

The Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law is a nonpartisan law and policy institute that seeks to improve systems of democracy and justice in the United States. We work to hold our political institutions and laws accountable to the twin American ideals of democracy and equal justice for all. The Brennan Center’s work ranges from voting rights to campaign finance reform, from ending mass incarceration to preserving Constitutional protections in the fight against terrorism. Part think tank, part advocacy group, part cutting edge communications hub, we start with rigorous research. We craft innovative policies. And we fight for them – in Congress and the states, in the courts, and in the court of public opinion. 

The Brennan Center’s Democracy Program strives to bring the ideal of representative self-government closer to reality, including through work to protect the right to vote and ensure fair redistricting practices. The Democracy Program advances its goals through work on a variety of fronts, including: publishing path-breaking legal, empirical, qualitative, and historical research; litigating cutting-edge issues in courts throughout the country, including the U.S. Supreme Court; guiding legislative reform efforts at the state and federal levels; and shaping public opinion through frequent public presentations and media appearances. 

Position: The Brennan Center’s Democracy Program seeks an attorney for a two-year fellowship that will focus on legal strategy, litigation and advocacy to protect the 2020 Census. The position will be based in the Brennan Center’s New York office and will require occasional travel to Washington, D.C. and other locations. The Census Litigation and Advocacy Fellow will report to the Senior Counsel who leads our redistricting and representation team. 

The census touches virtually every aspect of American life, including our democratic institutions, our voting rights, and our political voices. A fair and accurate census is vital to ensuring that congressional seats are apportioned properly among the states, that our electoral districts are drawn fairly, and that all people—regardless of their age, race, ethnicity, sex, gender, or national origin—are represented in our federal, state, and local governments. Yet, heading into 2020, the census is in danger, threatened by efforts to politicize the census count, underfunding, and dramatic changes to census format (including moving the census online for the first time). These developments particularly endanger the ability of vulnerable communities, including communities of color, immigrants, and the poor, to participate in the census. 

The Brennan Center is working to protect the census through a mix of legal and advocacy initiatives, empirical research, and communications campaigns. The Census Litigation and Advocacy Fellow will help advance the Center’s census efforts in collaboration with the Democracy Program’s senior leadership and members of the Program’s redistricting team. 

Responsibilities: 

  • Conducting legal and policy research and analysis. 
  • Advising senior program staff and allied organizations on litigation and advocacy strategy. 
  • Participating as counsel in litigation at both the trial and appellate level. 
  • Undertaking and reviewing legal and factual research in support of litigation, advocacy, and communications initiatives. 
  • Supervising research by clinic students, interns, pro bono counsel, and program associates. 
  • Attending regular meetings and convenings of census experts. 
  • Assist in building and maintaining a coalition of allied organizations, experts, grassroots groups. 
  • Producing public-facing writing on census issues and participating in public talks on census matters. 
  • Mentoring junior employees. 

Qualifications: A J.D. degree or equivalent and admission to the bar is required, as well as a minimum of three years’ legal experience. The ideal candidate will have: 

  • Three to five years of relevant experience in legal work environments (including clerkships). 
  • A background in one or more of the following areas: administrative law; constitutional law; federal privacy law; civil rights law; federal civil litigation. 
  • The ability to work well with a variety of constituencies, including civil rights organizations, grassroots organizers, community advocates, and government offices. 
  • Exemplary writing, research, and analytical skills. 
  • Excellent organizational skills and the ability to juggle multiple tasks in a fast-paced and deadline-driven environment. 
  • Polished interpersonal skills and sound judgment, including the ability to work with diverse constituencies both inside and outside the organization. 
  • Comfort with public speaking. 
  • Prior experience working with civil-rights organizations or other public interest organizations a plus. 

Salary: The salary is competitive in the field and commensurate with experience. A generous benefits package is available as well. 

Applications: Applicants will be interviewed on a rolling basis and decisions will be made as soon as exemplary candidates are identified. To apply, visit http://brennancenter.applytojob.com/apply/JcqbyFg33w/Fellow-Census-Litigation-And-Advocacy-Democracy-Program. Please upload the following application materials: cover letter (copy and paste where indicated), resume, two writing samples (up to 10 pages each), and contact information for three references. No phone calls or faxes. Please reference where you saw this posting. 

If you have difficulty with the online system, you may send your application by e-mail to: brennancenterjobs@nyu.edu with “Census Fellow” in the subject line, after registering in the online system. Applying through our website is strongly preferred. 

The Brennan Center for Justice is committed to a workplace based on equal opportunity and a strong belief in the increased effectiveness that comes from a diverse workforce. To this end, Brennan Center: 

  • Hires staff that reflects this country's full range of racial, ethnic, cultural, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic identity; 
  • Considers and hires applicants who have been previously incarcerated; 
  • Creates a workplace where true diversity is fostered and different perspectives are valued and freely exchanged; 
  • Ensures that all members of the Brennan Center community feel welcome and respected, and have equal opportunities to thrive and advance within the institution; and 
  • Commits to supporting low-income communities and communities of color particularly affected by social inequities.
Read More

Apply for this position

Required*
Apply with Indeed
Attach resume as .pdf, .doc, .docx, .odt, or .rtf (limit 5MB) or Paste resume

Paste your resume here or Attach resume file

To comply with government Equal Employment Opportunity / Affirmative Action reporting regulations, we are requesting (but NOT requiring) that you enter this personal data. This information will not be used in connection with any employment decisions, and will be used solely as permitted by state and federal law. Your voluntary cooperation would be appreciated. Learn more.
Gender
Race/Ethnicity

Invitation for Job Applicants to Self-Identify as a U.S. Veteran
  • A “disabled veteran” is one of the following:
    • a veteran of the U.S. military, ground, naval or air service who is entitled to compensation (or who but for the receipt of military retired pay would be entitled to compensation) under laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs; or
    • a person who was discharged or released from active duty because of a service-connected disability.
  • A “recently separated veteran” means any veteran during the three-year period beginning on the date of such veteran's discharge or release from active duty in the U.S. military, ground, naval, or air service.
  • An “active duty wartime or campaign badge veteran” means a veteran who served on active duty in the U.S. military, ground, naval or air service during a war, or in a campaign or expedition for which a campaign badge has been authorized under the laws administered by the Department of Defense.
  • An “Armed forces service medal veteran” means a veteran who, while serving on active duty in the U.S. military, ground, naval or air service, participated in a United States military operation for which an Armed Forces service medal was awarded pursuant to Executive Order 12985.
Veteran status
I IDENTIFY AS ONE OR MORE OF THE CLASSIFICATIONS OF PROTECTED VETERAN LISTED ABOVE
I AM NOT A PROTECTED VETERAN
I DON’T WISH TO ANSWER

Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability
Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability Form CC-305
OMB Control Number 1250-0005
Expires 1/31/2020
Why are you being asked to complete this form?

Because we do business with the government, we must reach out to, hire, and provide equal opportunity to qualified people with disabilities.i To help us measure how well we are doing, we are asking you to tell us if you have a disability or if you ever had a disability. Completing this form is voluntary, but we hope that you will choose to fill it out. If you are applying for a job, any answer you give will be kept private and will not be used against you in any way.

If you already work for us, your answer will not be used against you in any way. Because a person may become disabled at any time, we are required to ask all of our employees to update their information every five years. You may voluntarily self-identify as having a disability on this form without fear of any punishment because you did not identify as having a disability earlier.

How do I know if I have a disability?

You are considered to have a disability if you have a physical or mental impairment or medical condition that substantially limits a major life activity, or if you have a history or record of such an impairment or medical condition.

Disabilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Blindness
  • Deafness
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Epilepsy
  • Autism
  • Cerebral palsy
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Schizophrenia
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Major depression
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Missing limbs or partially missing limbs
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder
  • Impairments requiring the use of a wheelchair
  • Intellectual disability (previously called mental retardation)
Please check one of the boxes below:

You must enter your name and date
Your Name Today's Date
Reasonable Accommodation Notice

Federal law requires employers to provide reasonable accommodation to qualified individuals with disabilities. Please tell us if you require a reasonable accommodation to apply for a job or to perform your job. Examples of reasonable accommodation include making a change to the application process or work procedures, providing documents in an alternate format, using a sign language interpreter, or using specialized equipment.


iSection 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. For more information about this form or the equal employment obligations of Federal contractors, visit the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) website at www.dol.gov/ofccp.


PUBLIC BURDEN STATEMENT: According to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 no persons are required to respond to a collection of information unless such collection displays a valid OMB control number. This survey should take about 5 minutes to complete.