Career Opportunities & Internships

MALDEF offers challenging and rewarding employment opportunities for qualified individuals who are ready and willing to work hard. The following is a list of our current openings. All positions are available immediately and will remain open until filled. Download the job announcement for full description.

Grant Writer - Los Angeles, CA

Job Responsibilities:The Grant Writer prepares proposals and reports for obtaining grants from private foundations, corporations, individuals and other organizations. Coordinates and interfaces with internal departments and staff from funders. Researches funding patterns and opportunities from various sources and makes funding recommendations to the Vice President of Development. Writes persuasive and substantive grant requests and subsequent reports and ensures timely submission to funders. Writes acknowledgement letters and prepares other correspondence as needed. Maintains current data on and keeps abreast of MALDEF’s legal and non-legal work to have background information for proposals and reports. The Grant Writer works closely with the Vice President of Development to research and identify funding sources, developing approach strategies, and preparing proposal and report packages. Maintains a tracking system to monitor grant proposal and report status including: submissions, responses, renewals and reporting requirements. Prepares monthly and quarterly reports, and maintains current and organized files.

Qualifications and Experience: Undergraduate degree from an accredited institution is required. Graduate degree preferred. A minimum of three years experience in a nonprofit setting, preferably in Development, Marketing or Public Relations that includes grant proposal and report writing responsibilities is also required. The successful candidate will possess: strong writing skills and verbal communications, the ability to meet deadlines and to work on multiple projects concurrently, the ability to work in a fast-paced environment, and strong interpersonal skills. In addition, he/she must be resourceful and creative and have the ability to understand target audience and apply ideas, thoughts and cases to relate MALDEF’s work to those specific audiences.

Compensation: : Salary is commensurate with experience. MALDEF’s generous benefits package includes: 100% employer paid medical, dental and vision for employees and their eligible dependents, short and long term disability insurance, term life insurance, 403(b) retirement plan with employer contribution, employee assistance plan, 11 holidays, and 20 days personal time off (PTO) per year.Download full job announcement. Posted 1/25/18.

Regional Counsel – Washington, DC

Job Responsibilities:The Regional Counsel works with the President & General Counsel and staff to determine the public policy advocacy priorities for the office. Provides general supervision, guidance and training to the staff to ensure that advocacy positions are identified, well researched and effectively written and/or delivered, and that staff engages in strategic effective advocacy in MALDEF’s multiple program areas. Supervises day-to-day activities of regional office staff. Initiates and conducts public policy advocacy and provides regular guidance on issues, strategies, and points of law and policy to regional office staff. Acts as a MALDEF spokesperson nationally to the Spanish and English media, and at special events or forums. Oversees and may participate in litigation within MALDEF’s program areas conducted out of the regional office. Develops and maintains a network of ties to other national organizations and coalitions in order to further ongoing public policy advocacy. Establishes and maintains strong working relationships with officials and staff in Congress, federal agencies and commissions, and coalition partners. Analyzes and drafts legislation, proposed and final regulations, rules, and executive orders and research quantitative and qualitative data that verify or deny the positions taken preparing recommendations, legislative testimony, and talking points. The Regional Counsel also assists Development staff in coordinating some fundraising activities in the DC office region.

Qualifications and Experience: Juris Doctor or equivalent degree required; active bar membership in one or more states required. Eligibility for active bar membership in District of Columbia is required. Bar membership in Virginia or Maryland is desirable. At least five years of progressively responsible experience in civil rights and public interest law is required. Extensive experience in public policy advocacy and/or public interest litigation with civil rights issues required. Media experience, coalition building and community involvement with the Latino community are also required. At least one year of experience involving supervision of legal, policy, and clerical personnel.

Compensation: : $82,600 - 116,600+ per year. Fixed salary scale commensurate with years of legal experience. MALDEF offers a generous benefits package including 100% employer paid medical, dental, vision for the employee and qualified dependent family members, as short- and long-term disability insurance, term life insurance, 403(b) retirement plan with employer match, employee assistance plan, 11 paid holidays, and 20 days of personal time off (PTO) per year.Download full job announcement. Posted 8/4/17.

Staff Attorney – Chicago, IL

Job Responsibilities:In consultation with co-counsel inside and outside of MALDEF, devises and executes strategic plans in complex litigation through the following activities: conducts depositions and discovery, negotiates and monitors settlement agreements, and pursues attorney fee awards in civil rights litigation; conducts legal research and drafts pleadings, briefs, and administrative complaints; devises investigation plans and investigates potential legal claims; prepares memoranda on budget and legal theory for approval of litigation by MALDEF management; responds to media inquiries, makes public presentations, and prepares community education materials regarding Latino rights; participates in the development of long-term strategic goals and objectives for the assigned program areas and also for the regional office; supervises volunteer and professional support staff assigned to assist litigation programs.

Qualifications and Experience: Juris Doctor or equivalent degree required; active bar membership in one or more states required. Eligibility for active bar membership in Illinois required. Undergraduate or graduate instruction in public policy and/or social sciences is desirable. Federal and state court litigation experience, particularly in the area of civil rights, immigration, or employment is desirable.

Compensation: : $50,500 to $92,000+ per year. Fixed salary scale commensurate with years of legal experience. MALDEF’s generous benefits package includes: employer paid medical, dental, vision for employees and their eligible dependents; employer paid short and long term disability insurance; life insurance; and employee assistance program; A 403(b) retirement plan with employer contribution; 20 days of personal time (PTO); and eleven paid holidays each year. Download full job announcement. Posted 5/10/17.


MALDEF offers valuable internship opportunities for dedicated individuals who want to get involved in MALDEF's litigation, public policy, and community advocacy work. Law students are encouraged to apply for the competitive Law Clerk Summer Internship program. There are also internship opportunities available with the Parent School Partnership (PSP) program.

Communications Intern - Los Angeles, CA

Job Responsibilities: Communications interns perform research; assist in the building of media data bank; draft press releases, social media posts, and news stories; attend meetings; provide clerical support to the communications department senior staff.

Qualifications and Experience: An interest in civil rights and current events. Multi-media experience and bilingual capabilities are helpful. Must be computer and social media savvy, enjoy writing, and be willing to work as a part of a team under tight deadlines and quickly shifting priorities.

Duration: Summer: 10 weeks, 20 hours per week (Can vary depending on fellowship or work-study guidelines) Fall/Winter/Spring: 1 semester/quarter, 15 hours per week.

Compensation: Unpaid. Interested applicants should apply for fellowships or work study funds through their school. Download full job announcement. Posted 1/25/18.

Legal Intern - Los Angeles, CA, Sacramento, CA, Chicago, IL, San Antonio, TX, Washington, D.C.

Policy Intern - Los Angeles, CA , Sacramento, CA, Chicago, IL, San Antonio, TX, Washington, D.C.

Application Materials & Procedure

Please submit your cover letter, resume and 3 to 5 page writing sample by email or U.S. Mail. Electronic documents should be in .doc, .rtf, .txt, or .pdf format. Emails should include Your Full Name - Job Location, Job Title in the subject line. A separate application package is required for each position for which you wish to be considered. Incomplete applications will not be processed.

Attn: Human Resources
634 S. Spring Street, 11th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90014

Copyright 2009 MALDEF — Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund