Director of Civil Justice and the Judiciary

Apply now Job no: 496024
Work type: Staff Full-Time
Location: Denver, CO
Categories: Legal Professionals, Business Operations / Services, Admin / Executive / Office Support, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Our Organization

IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System, is a nonpartisan, nonprofit research institution at the University of Denver that is committed to increasing fairness, efficiency, accessibility, and the publics faith in the civil justice system.

People look to our justice system for relief in matters that affect their rights, their businesses, and the most intimate aspects of their lives; however, barriers and inefficiencies are effectively denying them real access. IAALS empowers judges, lawyers, businesspeople, and everyday users to put the best ideas into practice. Relying on real-time data to inform real-world solutions, IAALS is changing how our system serves people today while anticipating future needs—working tirelessly to increase access to justice.

Our Work

IAALS works on solving problems within the legal system: both in the courts and in the delivery of legal services more broadly. We conduct comprehensive analysis and work with stakeholders to design models, empower decision-makers, and measure outcomes and impacts to advance a trusted American legal system.

A trusted and trustworthy legal system is essential to our democracy, our economy, and our freedom. But, the American legal system is in a state of unprecedented change and challenge. Some 80 percent of Americans have legal needs that go unmet. Some 76 percent of state civil cases have a litigant on at least one side without lawyer representation. Businesses routinely choose arbitration rather than using the courts, jury trials are disappearing, and public confidence in our legal system is low.

Justice, the courts, and legal services must be accessible—and they are not. But IAALS is changing that. The problems are complex and multi-dimensional, and we are committed to comprehensive, balanced, and inclusive solutions across the American legal system. IAALS has ongoing projects in the areas of civil justice reform, family justice reform, the judiciary, legal education, and the legal profession. We encourage applicants to learn more about our work at

Position Summary

This position is responsible for overseeing IAALS work in the areas of civil justice reform and the judiciary. In this role the Director will be charged with leading the vision and strategy of IAALS’ work around making the civil justice system more accessible, fair, efficient, and accountable. This work includes access to justice innovations, rule reforms, and case management reforms, as well as broader judicial reforms that ensure fair, trustworthy, and accountable judges and courts. This includes presenting on related topics in various group settings; leading in developing and implementing a strategic plan; and assisting fundraising efforts to support this work.

Responsibilities include developing a strategic plan and agenda for this area of work, including empirical and legal research projects, and identifying partnerships, funding sources, and implementation projects in addition to developing recommendations. This includes working with others on the IAALS programmatic team who bring leadership and expertise to this area of work. Additionally, the individual will work with the various partners, project advisory groups, and other stakeholders to achieve consensus outcomes, stay abreast of developments around the country, provide content for our website and our blog, make presentations nationally, organize convenings and conferences, assist in fundraising, and undertake other duties as assigned. This person will work closely with the Chief Executive Officer, Director of Development, communications team, and the other programmatic directors.

Essential Functions

  • Provide leadership for IAALS’ civil and judiciary focus areas. Strategic oversight includes the development, implementation, and execution of the programmatic agenda and budget.
  • Lead our strategic efforts to design civil and judiciary projects, including collaboration with Research and others on the strategies for our work in this area. Supervise the team to accomplish all goals.
  • Lead the efforts to identify, manage, and evaluate projects to promote innovation in our civil justice system, including writing and publishing on this work. This includes collaborating with the Research team on empirical research.
  • Partner with the Director of Development to secure funding for projects.
  • Partner with IAALS’ Communications team to publicize and promote this work to external groups, including contributing content for the website and blog.
  • Maintain a working knowledge of innovative projects underway around the country in this area.
  • Build relationships with the courts, judges, court administrators, bar organizations, lawyers, and other entities involved in civil justice reform and judiciary reform efforts in order to raise the national profile of the work and organization.
  • Lead and supervise the civil justice and judiciary team to execute the projects including working with external partners to achieve implementation and impact.
  • Manage and coordinate regular communication with partners, project advisory groups, and outside consultants.
  • Writing: Draft publishable reports.
  • Present on projects and thought leadership nationally, which may include travel when necessary.
  • Other duties as assigned, including supervising staff.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Ability to think strategically and manage work product with minimal oversight.
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills.
  • Ability to communicate complex concepts in persuasive, understandable ways.
  • Ability to solve practical problems in situations where limited standardization exists. Good judgment, problem solving, and decision-making skills required.
  • Ability to build strong relationships and serve as a liaison between multiple parties.
  • Demonstrated experience giving presentations at conferences and speaking engagements in a variety of settings.
  • Capacity to plan and strategize and prioritize work, make independent decisions, and work on multiple tasks.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills with attention to detail.
  • Organization, clarity, and ability to anticipate what is needed in the future.
  • A strong comfort level in varied social situations.
  • Proven ability to meet established deadlines.
  • Project management experience.
  • Excellent writing skills and ability to write publishable reports.
  • Advanced computer proficiency in software programs relevant to legal research and presentations, such as Excel and PowerPoint.
  • Demonstrated successful experience working in and with diverse individuals and groups.

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Experience in civil litigation, work in legal practice and the courts, and work in solution-oriented efforts to improve the civil justice system, including demonstrated involvement in addressing on-going challenges or promoting innovation in the civil justice system.

Preferred Qualifications

  • J.D. Degree
  • 8 years of experience working as an attorney with civil litigation experience, work in legal practice and the courts, and work in solution-oriented efforts to improve the legal system, including demonstrated involvement in addressing on-going challenges or promoting innovation in the civil justice system; including supervisory experience.

Working Environment

1. Standard office environment.
2. Unexpected interruptions occur often and stress level is moderate to high.
3. Noise level is quiet to moderate.

Physical Activities

1. Ability to sit in front of a computer for an extended period of time.
2. Occasionally required to move about the office/campus with the capability of transporting objects up to 20 lbs.

Work Schedule
Monday - Friday, 40 hours per week. Remote work options available. 

Application Deadline
For best consideration, please submit your application materials by 4:00 p.m. (MST) March 10, 2023. Applications will be reviewed until the position is filled.

Special Instructions
Candidates must apply online through to be considered. Only applications submitted online will be accepted.

Salary Grade Number:
The salary grade for the position is 15.

Salary Range:
The salary range for this position is $115,000-$130,000.

The University of Denver has provided a compensation range that represents its good faith estimate of what the University may pay for the position at the time of posting. The University may ultimately pay more or less than the posted compensation range. The salary offered to the selected candidate will be determined based on factors such as the qualifications of the selected candidate, departmental budget availability, internal salary equity considerations, and available market information, but not based on a candidate’s sex or any other protected status.

The University of Denver offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO pass. The University of Denver is a private institution that empowers students who want to make a difference. Learn more about the University of Denver.

Please include the following documents with your application:
1. Resume
2. Cover Letter

The University of Denver is an equal opportunity employer. The University of Denver prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, age (40 years and over in the employment context), religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, marital status, veterans status, and any other class of individuals protected from discrimination under federal, state, or local law, regulation, or ordinance in any of the university's educational programs and activities, and in the employment (including application for employment) and admissions (including application for admission) context, as required by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended in 2008; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; the Age Discrimination Act of 1975; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967; and any other federal, state, and local laws, regulations, or ordinances that prohibit discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation. For the university's complete Non-Discrimination Statement, please see non‑discrimination‑statement.

All offers of employment are contingent upon satisfactory completion of a criminal history background check.

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