Executive Director

Immigrant Defense Project

Posted: 2/16/2021

Position Type: Full-Time

Function: CEO/ED/President

Primary domain: Advocacy/Social Action

City: New York

Postal code: 10018

State: New York

Country: United States

Organization Information:


Not Available



Mission statement:

The Immigrant Defense Project (IDP) was founded 20 years ago to combat an emerging human rights crisis: the targeting of immigrants for mass imprisonment and deportation.

Position Details:

Job Description:

The Immigrant Defense Project (IDP) is a vibrant and growing social justice organization whose mission is to promote fundamental fairness for immigrants who have had contact with the criminal legal system. IDP fights to end mass criminalization, detention, and deportation through a multipronged strategy including advocacy, litigation, legal advice and training, community defense, grassroots alliances, and strategic communications. In order to advance this work, IDP is seeking a new Executive Director to set the vision, direction, strategy, and governance structures for the organization, and to advance IDP’s mission through effective fundraising, organizational development strategies, and by cultivating a strong, resonant external presence.

For the past 20 years, IDP has created cutting-edge legal and advocacy strategies to support immigrants in contact with the criminal legal system, on an individual, local, and national level. IDP seeks not only to change law and policy, but also to change the discourse toward ending criminalization. Specifically, IDP seeks to minimize the harsh and disproportionate immigration consequences of contact with the criminal legal system by working to transform unjust deportation laws and policies, and by educating and advising immigrants, their criminal defense attorneys, and other advocates.

IDP began as a small organization of mostly lawyers focused primarily on legal strategies and litigation to drive change. Over the years, the organization has grown in stature and impact, expanding its slate of programs and services to include advocacy, community education, and state and federal policy work. With this expansion, IDP has become a national leading voice in matters related to the intersection of immigration and criminal justice. As a result, in the past five years, the number of staff has grown from 11 to 20, including lawyers, paralegals, advocacy campaign specialists, and communications strategists. In order to reach its full potential, IDP is seeking an Executive Director who will bring strong management, financial acumen, and organizational leadership to an organization that has grown quickly in a short space of time.

Within a culture of inclusivity and shared leadership, the Executive Director will be a dynamic and creative leader committed to and passionate about justice for immigrants impacted by the criminal legal system. The Director will collaboratively set vision, direction, and strategy for IDP’s work and continued success; partner with the leadership team in designing and implementing organizational development and management priorities, including building efficient operations, governance, and administrative systems; represent the organization externally and lift up its groundbreaking work and impact; and build and diversify its fundraising strategies and efforts. The ideal candidate will be a visionary and strategic leader and manager who brings deep experience managing nonprofit organizations, including fundraising, fiscal management, and operations. They will be a strong facilitator of people and ideas, and a thoughtful leader committed to cultivating a growing, learning environment. In addition, the new Director will bring a level of maturity and vision that fosters a healthy, robust, and supportive environment in which staff can thrive.

For the full position description and to apply, please visit: https://recruitcrm.io/apply/25003074


The ideal candidate will be a visionary leader with a well-developed ability to build consensus, develop and execute plans, and foster an environment of growth and learning. While no one candidate will embody all the qualifications below, the ideal candidate will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes, and experiences:
  • Demonstrated commitment to advancing social justice and direct experience in an advocacy, organizing, policy or legal organization working the areas of criminal justice or immigrants’ rights, and ideally at the intersection of the two; personal or professional experience centering the perspectives and voices of communities harmed by multiple and intersectional systems of oppression is also highly valued;
  • Experience in a director, leadership, or management role in a nonprofit organization;
  • Demonstrated experience directing and overseeing the growth of a nonprofit organization, including financial management, governance, fund development, and grant writing;
  • Exceptional communication skills, and the ability to engage with diverse groups of people in an open and respectful way;
  • Superb interpersonal skills and proven capacity to forge strong relationships with a variety of stakeholders;
  • Demonstrated ability to employ a growth and learning mindset, and to bring an inclusive, collaborative approach to managing and building consensus;
  • Ability to develop and implement effective communication strategies, including press outreach, website management, and social media;
  • Demonstrated experience in nonprofit fiscal management;
  • Ability to nurture a positive and healthy work environment for staff; and
  • An advanced degree in law, public policy, nonprofit management, or another related field is helpful, though equivalent relevant experience and related understanding of theories of change and programmatic frameworks can be substituted.


IDP is fiscally sponsored by Fund for the City of New York (FCNY), through which a generous benefits package is provided. Compensation for this position is targeted at $125,000 - $140,000 with final salary commensurate with experience. New team members are not expected to start at the top of the range, but particular exceptions will be considered.


$120k - 140k

Posting Expiration Date:


How to Apply:

More information about the Immigrant Defense Project may be found at: immigrantdefenseproject.org.

This search is being led by Callie Carroll and Yuniya Khan of NPAG. Due to the pace of this search, candidates are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Candidates may submit their cover letter, outlining their interest and qualifications, along with their resume via NPAG’s candidate portal.

The Immigrant Defense Project is an equal opportunity employer and proudly values diversity. Candidates of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Posted By: NPAG


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