Legal Fellow

Washington, DC
Full Time
Exp.: 3+ Years
Reports to: Director, Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies

Job Summary: The Heritage Foundation's mission is "to formulate and promote conservative public policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense." Based upon those principles, the Meese Center's main objective is to conduct research and educate on, and formulate and promote conservative public policies concerning, constitutional government, the law, and the judiciary. Consistent with the mission and that objective, the Legal Fellow engages with the highest degree of professionalism in independent research, publication, education programs, and other work concerning a broad array of issues. As necessary, the Legal Fellow is also responsible for helping with the organization of legal conferences and events and responding to media and other inquiries (with the expectation of developing substantive knowledge and media skills to give increasing numbers of media interviews, as directed).

Job Duties:
  • Engage in: (1) professional research, analysis, and writing for publication by Heritage and, as appropriate, other publications; (2) organization of meetings and events; and (3) representation of Heritage in many settings within and outside Heritage, including public functions, professional conferences, and, as appropriate, legislative hearings and meetings.
  • Work with others across Heritage, Heritage Action, other organizations, the general public, news media, and, as appropriate, Federal, State, local and foreign officials, to achieve Heritage objectives.
  • Supervise Center researchers and interns regarding legal research and other projects as needed and at the direction of the Director.
  • Assist in preparation and drafting of congressional testimony.
  • Other duties as assigned by the Director of the Meese Center.
  • Areas of Expertise: Knowledge and experience or scholarship in two and preferably all of the following areas of law and legal policy:
  • Constitutional law, particularly structural constitutionalism, including separation of powers and federalism principles.
  • Criminal law, including a strong background in all areas of the U.S. criminal justice system and efforts to adopt reforms.
  • Immigration law, including substantial knowledge of the following issues: E-Verify, sanctuary cities, presidential executive orders on immigration (e.g., DACA), U.S. asylum policy; interior enforcement, and border security.

Skill Factors:
  • Education: B.A./B.S. and a J.D.; Substantial legal writing and editing or related experience is required.
  • Experience: Minimum of 3 years’ experience in a policy or legal field. A judicial clerkship is preferred. Some knowledge of immigration law is preferred.

Special Skills/Requirements:
  • High level of professionalism (adaptability, maturity, integrity, accountability).
  • High initiative level, requiring some direction, but with a strong desire and demonstrated ability to assume increasing levels of responsibility.
  • Ability to work well with others and provide leadership to junior staff.
  • Understand and support the Heritage mission, and the Center's goals and objectives.

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