Officer, Legal Affairs and Associate General Counsel

Confidential Company  •  Washington, DC

8 - 10 years experience  •  Business Services

Salary depends on experience
Posted on 09/21/17
Confidential Company
Washington, DC
8 - 10 years experience
Business Services
Salary depends on experience
Posted on 09/21/17


The Pew Charitable Trusts is driven by the power of knowledge to solve today’s most challenging problems. Pew applies a rigorous, analytical approach to improve public policy, inform the public and invigorate civic life.


We are an independent nonprofit organization – the sole beneficiary of seven individual trusts established between 1948 and 1979 by two sons and two daughters of Sun Oil Company founder Joseph N. Pew and his wife, Mary Anderson Pew.


Our work lays the foundation for effective policy solutions by informing and engaging citizens, linking diverse interests to pursue common cause and insisting on tangible results. Our projects encourage efficient, responsive governments – at the local, state, national and international levels – serving the public interests.


With offices in Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Brussels and London and staff in other regions of the United States as well as Australia, Pew provides an exciting learning environment and the opportunity to work with highly talented individuals. We are a dynamic, rapidly evolving organization that values creativity and innovative thinking and fosters strong teamwork with mutual respect.


Legal Affairs Department:

The Pew Charitable Trusts is tackling some of the most pressing challenges we face today, whether it is conserving the natural environment and the rich array of life it supports, improving the efficiency of government and the services it provides, or reducing the effects of extreme weather events on homes, businesses, communities, and the economy. As a key member of Pew’s Legal Affairs team, you’ll work closely with Pew’s world-renowned team of experts, providing them with crucial legal guidance as they develop, support, and communicate scientific research and technical analyses that explain critical emerging issues, inform policy, and advance solutions to these and other problems. For nearly 15years, Pew has been surging ahead with a dramatic advancement of its charitable activities. In this role, you’ll be at the center of Pew’s efforts, supporting the organization as the Legal Affairs department's work grows in volume and complexity.


The Legal Affairs department is currently comprised of 33 individuals, including 20 legal staff, five compliance staff and eight board services staff. Your astute legal insights will be put to good use, as this position is responsible for a wide and growing array of general corporate legal and risk management matters, including helping oversee relationships with outside counsel.


Success in this position will require providing legal advice to senior management and staff regarding all of the institution's activities, from operating projects to grantmaking to lobbying. You’ll also collaborate with your Legal Affairs peers on the design, development and implementation of new policies and procedures improving Pew's operations.


Position Overview:

Pew is seeking an intellectually curious, hands-on, and highly-skilled attorney for the position of Officer, Legal Affairs and Associate General Counsel. The primary responsibility of this position is to support Pew’s domestic and international program units on a wide variety of legal issues. Day-to-day duties of this position include drafting and reviewing program agreements (such as fee-for-service and grant agreements); advising internal clients on lobbying activities and compliance; conducting relevant legal research and analysis on the requirements that apply to Pew's expanding activities; supporting corporate transactional projects for Pew’s programmatic teams; and liaising between the Legal Affairs department and other Pew staff. Given the fast-paced and complex duties of this position, a comprehensive understanding of tax-exempt organization law, specifically the laws applicable to public charities and entities engaged in non-profit or association advocacy, is required. This position is based in Washington, DC’s office.


  • Assist internal clients in strategically planning projects, agreements, and other programmatic work to assure compliance with all applicable domestic and international laws, including those that apply to public charities.
  • Counsel and train staff on legal and compliance issues relating to federal, state, local and international lobbying activities and government ethics.
  • Review and assess communications and publications for compliance with relevant laws and regulations, including those on defamation, electioneering, and grassroots lobbying.
  • Draft, review and negotiate a broad range of international and domestic contracts in connection with Pew's work.
  • Support program staff and government relations staff in appropriately tracking lobbying related expenses for compliance and reporting purposes.
  • Conduct research and analysis of specific legal questions and prepare memoranda and opinions setting forth research results, recommendations and conclusions.
  • Identify, assess and communicate legal and business risks, including reputational risks, to the organization’s decision makers.
  • Stay up-to-date on relevant developments in the areas of non-profit advocacy/lobbying, government ethics, prohibited campaign intervention, tax-exempt organizations, and contractlaw, among others.
  • Contribute to and participate in additional initiatives of the department and institution as requested.
  • Manage outside counsel as necessary for specialized legal advice.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • J.D. with at least eight years of legal experience.
  • Demonstrated ability to draft and negotiate a broad range of contractual agreements.
  • Strong client service skills and the ability to resolve problems creatively, collaboratively, and effectively; to identify underlying issues, patterns and trends in complex situations; and to apply relevant expertise and experience to solving diverse legal questions.
  • Exemplary written and oral communications skills, including the ability to summarize issues and address them in a clear, concise and easily understood manner.
  • Experience advising clients on lobbying, government relations, nonprofit advocacy and government ethics.
  • Significant in-house experience at a sophisticated public charity, association or private foundation, or advising nonprofits at a large law firm, preferred.
  • Experience with corporate transactional matters, such as business combinations, restructurings, and anti-trust law compliance, preferred.
  • Ability to quickly understand Pew's goals and to counsel clients on how to best achieve those goals, consistent with informed and properly mitigated legal and business risks.
  • Dynamic leadership and problem solving skills, sound judgment, high integrity and the ability to understand a situation quickly, gain credibility and influence the organization through thoughtful counsel.
  • Successful candidate must be confident, with strong interpersonal skills and the capacity to develop productive relationships at all levels.
  • Abilities to multi-task, organize time and identify resources for projects.

  • Proficiency in Spanish or French preferred, but not required.

  • Licensed to practice law in the District of Columbia or eligible for such admission promptly upon hiring.

  • Collegial personality and ability to work collaboratively with diverse teams of legal and non-legal professionals.

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