FOIA Staff Attorney

Job Posting

FOIA Staff Attorney

Date Posted:

August 24, 2018

The American Immigration Council, established in 1987, works to strengthen America by shaping how America thinks about and acts towards immigrants and immigration and by working toward a more fair and just immigration system that opens its doors to those in need of protection and unleashes the energy and skills that immigrants bring. The Council brings together problem solvers and employs four coordinated approaches to advance change—litigation, research, legislative and administrative advocacy, and communications. 

The FOIA Staff Attorney works to implement the American Immigration Council’s mission by promoting greater transparency in the immigration realm through litigation and advocacy related to the Freedom of Information Act and other open access laws. The attorney will use FOIA to compel agency transparency on a variety of immigration issues, including enforcement, due process, and business immigration. The attorney also will help lead the Council’s FOIA coordination efforts through collaborative work with Council staff, litigators, advocates, and open government organizations.

The attorney will help lead the Council’s FOIA coordination efforts through collaborative work with Council staff, litigators, advocates, and open government organizations. The attorney will assist with drafting and litigating FOIA and other open access requests; draft practice advisories, and other resources; and work with other members of the Council’s team to promote the work of the Council. The attorney also will work in collaboration with the Council’s partner, the American Immigration Lawyers Association, and will ensure effective coordination in our FOIA efforts. The successful candidate will be based in Washington, D.C.  

As with all positions at the Council, this position requires commitment to the Council’s mission. 

Apply for this position

Essential Job Functions include:

  • Helps identify and develop areas warranting FOIA and/or open access requests. 
  • Conducts legal research and analysis related to FOIA or other open access laws. 
  • Drafts legal pleadings for filing with the federal courts and/or immigration agencies. 
  • Develops effective processes for tracking the Council’s transparency work and best practices for engaging agencies and litigating FOIAs and other open access requests. 
  • Develops practice materials and litigation resources for immigration practitioners related to FOIA and other open access requests. 
  • Speaks on panels and provides supervised technical assistance. 
  • Collaborates with other Council staff members on analysis and publication of, and responses to, government policies and data. 
  • Coordinates collaborative efforts among organizations engaged in government transparency work focused on immigration agencies. 
  • Helps organize litigation meetings and workshops. 
  • Works with other members of the Council staff to ensure execution of communications, marketing and development strategies stemming from work described above.   
  • Writes and edits blogs, fact sheets, website text, and other non-legal documents. 
  • Performs other related duties and tasks, as assigned. 


Some travel is expected for this position. 

Required Education and Training 

  • J.D. Degree required. 
  • Admission to State Bar. 

Minimum Job Requirements 

  • At least 4-5 years of previous experience in federal court litigation, including FOIA litigation. 
  • Substantive knowledge of FOIA and federal court procedures.  Knowledge of immigration law is a plus.  
  • Strong legal research, analytical, and writing skills. 
  • Strong written and oral communication skills.  
  • A high level of attention to detail, accuracy, and thoroughness. 
  • Ability to prioritize and manage competing demands/multiple assignments through effective time management. 
  • Ability to think creatively about solutions to legal problems. 
  • Strong organizational skills. 
  • Ability to exercise sound judgment and maintain confidentiality. 
  • Ability to work both independently and as a member of a team. 
  • Ability to collaborate with Council staff and outside organizations and attorneys. 
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite (Excel, Word, PowerPoint, and Outlook). 
  • Ability to exhibit professionalism in representing the organization, both internally and externally. 
  • Ability to form positive working relationships with people from varied backgrounds.  
  • Ability to adapt to changing priorities, strategies, and circumstances. 
  • Ability to display initiative and openness to change.  
  • Active listening and problem-solving skills. 


We offer a dynamic and collaborative work environment with a competitive compensation package based on your experience and qualifications. Our generous benefits include 100% of an employee’s Medical/Rx, Dental, and Vision premiums, as well as contributions towards dependents’ premiums; a 401(k) with up to 3% matching contribution upon enrollment, employer paid disability and life insurance, commuter subsidy, and on-site fitness room. In addition, we provide employees with flexible scheduling and telecommuting options and plenty of time away from the office to bolster creativity and recharge. Added perks: four-week paid parental leave and a four-week sabbatical every tenth year of service.

For Consideration

Qualified applicants are to submit cover letter, resume and salary requirement. Cover letter should include a summary of how your background, knowledge, skills and abilities relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position.

NOTE:  Applications without cover letters and which do not indicate desired salary may not be considered. 

Direct hire only – NO recruiters (mail, email, fax or phone).

The American Immigration Council is an equal opportunity employer, and is committed to treating all applicants and employees without regard to unlawful considerations of race, religious creed, color, religion, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition (cancer or genetic characteristics), genetic information, military and veterans status, citizenship and immigration status, or any other classification protected by applicable local, state, or federal laws. This equal employment opportunity commitment applies to all aspects of employment, including but not limited to, advertising, recruiting, hiring, job assignment, compensation, promotion, demotion, benefits, training, discipline, and termination.

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