This posting will close at 11:59 pm on Sunday, February 9, 2020. Must apply at www.denvergov.org/jobs
The Denver City Attorney’s Office is one of the largest law firms in Colorado, with over 125 attorneys and approximately 110 staff members comprised of paralegals, victim advocates, and other support and supervisory staff members. It may have the most diverse practice of any law firm in Colorado. Clients include the Mayor, the Clerk and Recorder, City Council, and all city agencies, departments, offices, boards, commissions, and authorities.
The City Attorney's Office is dedicated to providing an inclusive and diverse work environment in which every person has the opportunity to achieve the highest professional and personal development and is accorded the highest degree of dignity and respect. The City and County of Denver’s core values are integrity, transparency, collaboration, mutual respect, support, inclusivity, trust, and organizational excellence. The successful candidate for this position must demonstrate these core operating principles and work ethic.
The Civil Litigation Section is responsible for handling most of the tort and 42 U.S.C. § 1983 actions brought against the City and County of Denver, its employees, and officers. The Section is also responsible for investigating and managing the majority of claims made against the City, excluding claims involving Denver International Airport and the Department of Human Services. Additionally, the Civil Litigation Section provides training, advice, and opinions related to policies, practices, and laws to various City Departments and Agencies. The Section handles approximately 120 lawsuits and over 600 claims annually.
This position presents a challenging and rewarding opportunity for a leader and manager with extensive legal and litigation experience, who thrives in a fast-paced, constantly changing work environment. The Assistant Director is responsible for serving as lead counsel on some of the City’s most complex litigation and is expected to be an expert on all aspects of federal constitutional and civil rights law, as well as the application of the provisions of the Colorado Governmental Immunity Act. In addition to serving as lead counsel, the Assistant Director provides strategic counsel to the leadership team and staff, advises City agencies and departments, and provides coaching and supervision to a team of ten talented litigation attorneys of various experience levels.
Job responsibilities for the Assistant Director position include the following:
Leadership and Collaboration
Supports and implements the vision of the Section and the City Attorney’s Office as a whole.
Develops high-performance teams by establishing a spirit of cooperation, cohesion for achieving goals, and openness to feedback.
Demonstrates agility and adaptability by quickly identifying solutions to potential political issues or internal/external forces that may influence or alter the Section’s goals or the goals of the organization.
Collaborates with other leadership in the City Attorney’s Office to achieve agency or Mayoral priorities.
Demonstrates openness to new organizational structures, procedures and technology, and coaches the team to embrace change.
Engages employees in achieving the Section’s objectives and actively fosters a culture of inclusion.
Implements management initiatives that positively impact operations, including advocating and defending final decisions.
Resolves problems and mediates conflicts encountered during daily operations and determines appropriate resolutions.
Promotes teamwork and provides and encourages regular communication, ensuring assigned attorneys are informed of relevant business issues and their impact on the organization.
Participates in planning and managing budget systems, prepares and presents budget recommendations to higher management, operates within budget parameters, and appropriately adjusts work plans/activities due to budget changes.
Coaches, mentors, develops, and provides challenging opportunities for all assigned attorneys.
Effectively allocates work assignments for attorneys based upon experience and expertise, workload, and opportunities for growth and development.
Consistently reviews work product to ensure sound and appropriate legal analysis and decision-making and the production of a high-quality work product. Provides oversight and supervision for hearings, oral arguments and trials.
Champions continuous improvement, including devising new strategies and opportunities for the Section in coordination with the rest of Section’s leadership team.
Sets consistent performance standards for attorneys and ensures Section operations continuously achieve or exceed performance metrics.
Develops and implements training and professional development plans for assigned attorneys.
Effectively identifies and resolves team and/or individual performance related issues or conflicts, including removing hidden barriers that disproportionately impact an attorney’s performance.
Conduct performance reviews of assigned attorneys and document causes for disciplinary action, initiating letters of reprimand, as appropriate, and making formal recommendations for disciplinary action.
Respond to formal and informal employee grievances and prepare written responses.
Possesses a strong knowledge of and high proficiency in a wide variety of local government and other applicable law, with specialized demonstrated expertise in the areas of torts and civil rights.
Produces concise, coherent, comprehensive, and well-reasoned work with an emphasis on attention to detail.
Acts as lead counsel on high-profile lawsuits.
Uses problem-solving skills and demonstrates an ability to consistently work well under high pressure situations.
Provides excellent client service, including representing, advising, and developing sound legal opinions for City officers and employees.
Assists with responding to CORA requests and media inquiries directed toward the City Attorney’s Office.
Perform other related duties as assigned or requested by Section Director or City Attorney.
We are looking for a true leader who is a self-starter, team-player, is passionate about working in public service, and strives to achieve operational excellence in defending against claims and lawsuits filed against the City and its employees. The right candidate must be outcome and results oriented, ethical and fair, have good common sense and sound judgment, be capable of working on and managing several complex and varied lawsuits and/or issues at one time, and demonstrate an ability to develop, lead, manage, and motivate an experienced and dynamic legal team.
In additional, we are looking for someone with the following skills/experience:
At least ten (10) years of experience practicing law
At least seven (7) years of significant litigation experience, including successfully managing a large case load and trying cases as lead counsel
Experience handling litigation involving public entities
Experience in civil rights law and/or complex tort litigation
Experience with budgeting and leading and managing complex projects, including developing, reviewing, and implementing policies, procedures, and reports
At least three (3) years supervisory experience, including a demonstrated ability to evaluate and develop employees
Ability to multi-task, prioritize, and work effectively in a fast-paced environment
We realize your time is valuable so please do not apply if you do not have at least the following required minimum qualifications:
Education: Doctor of Jurisprudence Degree or Bachelor of Laws Degree.
Experience: Three years of experience of the type and/or at the level of Assistant City Attorney – Senior with demonstrated significant experience in civil litigation.
Licensures/Certifications: Possession of a license to practice law in Colorado from the Colorado Supreme Court at the time of application or possession of a license from any U.S. state that has a reciprocity agreement with the state of Colorado, excluding the following states: California, Delaware, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland, Nevada, Rhode Island, and South Carolina. The preceding list of non-reciprocal admission jurisdictions is intended to be used only as a guide, as rules and regulations of every jurisdiction are subject to change at any time. Positions with the Denver City Attorney's Office are dependent upon the rules and regulations in place at the time of application and subsequent hiring. Licenses and certifications must be kept current as a condition of employment.
Equivalency: No substitution of experience for education is permitted.
To be considered for this position, you must include the following on your job application (upload the multiple attachment(s) to the Resume/CV section on the My Experience tab):
Internal Number: R0025561
About Denver City Attorney's Office
The City Attorney’s Office serves as the legal adviser to the Mayor, City Council, City Auditor, City Clerk and Recorder and all City departments and agencies; represents and defends the City in legal matters; handles all suits initiated on behalf of the City and County of Denver and any of its departments and agencies; prosecutes violations of City ordinances; and provides counsel to elected officials and client agencies on charter interpretation and reform.