Staff Attorney

Western Watersheds Project

Any, Montana

Job Type Permanent
Salary Details 73,500/year
Deadline Oct 31, 2023
Required Experience 2 - 6 years

Staff Attorney

The role of the Staff Attorney is to bring litigation on behalf of Western Watersheds Project, and at times our allies, in the interests of protecting and restoring western watersheds and wildlife, particularly in the context of livestock grazing.  The geographical focus of the Staff Attorney will be the 9th Circuit (West Coast states plus Idaho, Montana, Nevada, and Arizona). The position will entail administrative appeals and litigation of federal and/or state agency decisions, oversight of agency planning processes, media outreach, and advising program staff on legal issues.  Some limited legislative advocacy may also be required. The staff attorney should be highly organized, strategic, self-motivated, able to synthesize and understand ecological and legal concepts, and have strong written and oral communication skills.


  • Review federal and state decisions regarding public lands and wildlife, evaluate legal compliance, and prepare litigation memoranda presenting facts, case law, and particular features of the potential case to assist WWP decisionmakers on litigation strategy;
  • Represent WWP in the capacity of lead attorney on litigation efforts, particularly in Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, California, and Arizona;
  • Engage in settlement negotiations with federal and state agencies on behalf of WWP and, at times, partner groups;
  • Represent WWP at public meetings or hearings;
  • Participate in media outreach opportunities including press releases, op-eds, position statements, newsletter articles, and blog posts;
  • Coordinate communications among co-plaintiffs;
  • Regularly participate in conference calls, both internal WWP staff calls and calls among co-plaintiffs and other allies;
  • Attend trainings, conferences, and workshops as directed;
  • Visit public lands, documenting habitat conditions and management.
  • Demonstrate mindfulness about the history of public lands in the western United States, including Indigenous lands and unceded territories.


  • J.D. required, with a background in environmental law and policy preferred;
  • Admitted to the bar in at least one 9th Circuit state required;
  • Environmental litigation experience preferred;
  • Affinity for and knowledge of remote and rugged areas in the West;
  • Highly organized and experienced in researching applicable case law and analyzing administrative documents to glean important evidence;
  • Strong oral and written communications skills, including skill at writing legal briefs and presenting oral arguments before courts;
  • Desire to make a difference in protecting native species from livestock grazing impacts on public lands;
  • Able to take direction and work as part of a team;
  • Self-directed and accountable;
  • Position may be located in any state where WWP operates (Idaho, Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, or Montana).
  • Experience litigating environmental cases preferred.

The Staff Attorney position is a full-time, benefitted position within WWP, with a current salary of $73,491 per year. The anticipated start date for the position is December 1, 2023.


TO APPLY: Send a cover letter, resume summarizing relevant work and educational achievements, three professional references (including contact information), and a writing sample highlighting your legal abilities, in a single .pdf file, to jobs@westernwatersheds.org by October 31, 2023.

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category General / Stewardship, Policy And Law
Tags Outreach