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Southeast Louisiana Legal Services Seeks an Executive Director

Thursday, October 31, 2013

  • Southeast Louisiana Legal Services

Southeast Louisiana Legal Services Seeks an Executive Director

Southeast Louisiana Legal Services (SLLS) seeks an Executive Director to lead this nationally recognized nonprofit organization dedicated to providing free legal aid on civil issues to low income households.

SLLS has been well-served by its highly regarded long standing co-executive directors. SLLS began in 1979 with a grant from the Legal Services Corporation. In 2002, SLLS and New Orleans Legal Assistance Corporation, which was founded in 1967, merged. SLLS expanded again in 2011 to areas in and around Baton Rouge and Houma. On its budget of more than $6 million, SLLS serves an area nearly twice the land mass of Connecticut and Rhode Island combined which includes twenty-two southeast Louisiana Parishes. One half the state’s poverty population lives in the SLLS service area.

About the Position

The next Executive Director will lead SLLS in a time of great change and opportunity as the organization undertakes initiatives to strengthen legal work, streamline intake, support professional development, update technology, and grow resources.

High Priority Roles and Responsibilities for the next Executive Director:

  • To articulate a clear strategic vision for SLLS’ future, including its legal work
  • To safeguard its focus on clients
  • To strengthen relationships throughout the community as the leader and public face of SLLS
  • To implement the recommendations of the strategic planning process
  • To develop leadership throughout SLLS
  • To bring offices and staff together to a shared vision and full potential
  • To develop and expand the resources of SLLS

Qualifications of the next Executive Director:

  • Possession of a JD and the willingness and ability to become licensed in Louisiana
  • A passion for advocacy for the legal rights of low income clients
  • Ten years in the practice of law
  • Management experience involving staff supervision, financial oversight and reporting, budget development, and compliance with grant, contract and legal requirements
  • Experience in a multi-million dollar, multi-site nonprofit organization a plus
  • Experience in a legal aid organization a plus
  • Success in resource development, including grant writing and private fundraising
  • An open and compassionate communication style
  • Confident leadership and decision-making skills
  • Experience working productively with individuals and organizations with shared or diverse goals, including staff, Board of Directors, bar associations, judiciary, client communities and the general community
  • Interest in advancing technology solutions in service of clients and efficiency

Application Process

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. To receive full consideration, you are encouraged to submit your application materials by December 13, 2013. Please submit a letter expressing in detail your interest in the position, your qualifications for the position, and what you believe you can contribute to the organization’s future. Please include a current resume, and names and contact information for three professional references.

Materials should be emailed to in Microsoft Word or pdf format.

SLLS is being assisted in the search by Patricia Pap, Executive Director, Management Information Exchange (MIE), 99 Chauncy St., Suite 700, Boston, MA 02111, 617-556-0288,, Candidates with questions about the position or process are encouraged to contact her.

SLLS aims to make a hiring decision in mid-February 2014 and to have the successful candidate join SLLS soon thereafter.

SLLS is an equal opportunity employer and encourages candidates with disabilities, women, persons of color and others who represent distinct linguistic or cultural communities to apply.

About Southeast Louisiana Legal Services

On August 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans and most of the SLLS service area with 145 mph winds. Eighty percent of New Orleans flooded after passage of the hurricane and six of the service area’s ten parishes were devastated. Less than a month after Katrina, the area was hit by Hurricane Rita. Three years later, while the Katrina/Rita clean-up was still ongoing, Louisiana was again hit with back to back Hurricanes Gustav and Ike.

Following the 2010 explosion on the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico, SLLS joined with other LSC and non-LSC funded civil legal aid providers in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida to respond to the legal needs of low income residents.

SLLS adjustments in diversity strategies, legal advocacy and collaborations with the judiciary, the private bar, law schools and law students, regional and national law firms, pro bono lawyers, and other legal and non-legal public interest organizations following these disasters are recognized nationally as major accomplishments in the delivery of civil legal aid.

This resilience and commitment to clients are important to SLLS’ future as it fully develops its relationships throughout its expanded service area; manages the wide range of work it undertakes including special projects in the areas of income tax, foster children and foreclosure; and continues its leadership throughout Louisiana on public interest legal efforts.

SLLS has revenue of over $6 million from federal, state, and local sources, both governmental and private. Its largest funders include the Legal Services Corporation, the Louisiana Bar Foundation, and the Department of Justice. Other sources of funding include IOLTA, court filing fees, juvenile, VAWA, and many others. SLLS has a staff of 90, including 50 lawyers. It has staffed offices in the cities of Hammond, New Orleans, Covington, Marrero, Baton Rouge and Houma.

For more information about Southeast Louisiana Legal Services, visit

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