Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc.

  • Litigation Fellow

    Job Locations US-CA-San Francisco | US-IL-Chicago | US-CA-Santa Monica | US-DC-Washington | US-NY-New York
    Posted Date 2 months ago(8/19/2019 8:41 PM)
    Job ID
    # of Openings
    Litigation [103000]
  • Overview

    The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is the nation's most effective environmental action organization. We use law, science and the support of 3.1 million members and online activists to protect the planet's wildlife and wild places and to ensure a safe and healthy environment for all living things. NRDC was founded in 1970 and our staff helped write some of America's bedrock environmental laws, including the Clean Water Act, and many of the implementing regulations; our water enforcement cases played a major role shaping current water policy throughout the country. Today, our staff of more than 500 lawyers, scientists, economists, policy and communications experts, and others, work out of offices in New York, Washington D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Bozeman, Montana, and Beijing.


    Position Summary:


    NRDC’s Litigation Team is seeking one or more Litigation Fellow(s) for a two-year fellowship (with the possibility of a third year extension) starting in Fall 2020. Fellow(s) will work in one of our five main U.S. offices: New York, Washington D.C., Chicago, San Francisco, or Santa Monica.


    Litigation Fellows will join NRDC’s Litigation Team, which represents NRDC and coalition partners in complex civil litigation to protect public health and the environment. The Litigation Team is a group of approximately 30 lawyers and 7 litigation assistants across several NRDC offices. We pursue litigation across a broad range of environmental and public health issues, often working in collaboration with and on behalf of communities most impacted by environmental injustices (including Black, indigenous, people of color, low-income and rural communities). We have filed numerous lawsuits resisting the Trump administration’s efforts to dismantle environmental protections, including cases defending national monuments, challenging the suspension of clean water safeguards, opposing offshore drilling and seismic exploration, and protecting energy efficiency standards. We also have a growing docket of environmental enforcement cases against government and private party polluters. This includes cases to protect the people of Newark, New Jersey, and Flint, Michigan, from lead in drinking water; to remediate toxic pollution in the Penobscot River in Maine; to abate mold in New York City public housing for residents with asthma; and to halt air pollution from a coal-fired power plant in Illinois.


    Specific responsibilities may include:

    • Collaborating with a team of lawyers and litigation assistants on legal research and factual investigations;
    • Writing briefs, motions and memoranda;
    • Presenting oral arguments and participating in status conferences and other hearings;
    • Preparing for and taking depositions;
    • Communicating with opposing counsel, clients, and partner organizations; and
    • Engaging in discovery and conducting record and document review.


    The Litigation Fellowship is designed for recent law school graduates. In assessing candidates, we look for:

    • Juris Doctorate within the past three years;
    • Admission to the Bar of the jurisdiction in which they intend to practice, or willingness to complete the requirements for admission to that Bar;
    • Strong legal writing and analytical skills;
    • Strong oral and written communication skills;
    • Experience effectively working with a team;
    • Demonstrated competency in working with people with different social identities than their own (including race, gender, sexual identity or orientation, age, class, and disability);
    • Creativity and resourcefulness;
    • Demonstrated commitment to public service, equity or social justice (including environmental, economic, social, or food justice);
    • Commitment to NRDC’s values and mission; and
    • Record of academic or professional accomplishment.

    NRDC is committed to workplace diversity and inclusion. We are equal opportunity employers and do not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, gender identity and expression, marital status, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law. We offer competitive salaries, excellent benefits, and a pleasant working environment. Salary is based on a nonprofit scale and commensurate with experience. Consistent with the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.


    To apply, please visit, create a profile, and upload your resume. Then use the “additional documents” prompts to upload a short cover letter, a short writing sample that does not reflect substantial editing by others, a list of three references, and a law school transcript. In your cover letter, please tell us how you found out about this posting, and please indicate whether you have a preference to be located in New York, Washington D.C., Chicago, San Francisco, or Santa Monica. Please no phone calls, emails, faxes or in-person resume drop-offs. Please reference where you saw this posting. NRDC is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


    This posting will be open until September 30, 2019. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, so we encourage applicants to apply soon.


    If you are having technical difficulty while applying, please reach out to iCIMS Customer Care by dialing 1-800-889-4422.


    For further information about NRDC, please visit


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