We’re hiring a Staff Attorney

Friends is looking for a Staff Attorney to join our team. The Staff Attorney will represent our legal advocacy and policy work and supervise our summer legal intern program. The Staff Attorney will assist Friends in implementing our mission to protect and restore the San Juan Islands and the Salish Sea for people and nature.


  • Monitor land-use proposals in San Juan County.
  • Review and comment on private and public local, state, and federal actions likely to cause environmental impacts or diminish the availability of natural resources.
  • Conduct litigation as sole attorney, including drafting the complaint and subsequent briefs, engaging in motion practice, identifying and preparing witnesses, taking testimony and conducting cross-examination.
  • Conduct closed and open-record legal appeals before the San Juan County Hearing Examiner, Growth Management Hearings Board, Shorelines Hearings Board, Pollution Control Hearings Board, and state courts.
  • Cultivate new allies and collaborate effectively with partners.
  • Assist with communications, fundraising, and outreach activities.
  • Review contracts and review and update internal policies.
  • Draft articles for Friends’ outreach, including website, Facebook page, Annual Report, and Newsletters.
  • Draft press releases for advocacy programs and serve as spokesperson as needed.
  • Communicate with Board and sub-committees as needed to ensure proper oversight of Friends’ advocacy efforts.
  • Supervise 1-2 legal interns each summer.


  • Law school graduate admitted to, or willing to apply for admission to, the Washington Bar.
  • Litigation experience, with a preference for appearances before administrative tribunals.
  • Preference for knowledge base in land use law concepts and state and federal environmental laws, including Washington’s Growth Management Act, Shoreline Management Act, Hydraulic Code, Land Use Petition Act, State Environmental Policy Act, and Public Records laws, and federal Endangered Species Act, Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act.
  • Preference for knowledge base in maritime law and other areas of the law related to marine vessel shipping.
  • Outstanding research, analysis, writing, and oral advocacy skills.
  • Strong initiative, thoughtful judgment, diligent work ethic, and skilled ability to communicate complex legal arguments and scientific concepts to all members of a community.
  • Ability to conduct a solo practice.
  • Willingness to play any role needed within organization and to work occasional evenings and weekends.
  • Demonstrated commitment to the public interest and a passion for Friends’ mission.
  • Commitment to fostering a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work environment.


The Staff Attorney will work primarily from the office in Friday Harbor, San Juan Island.

Compensation & Benefits

Commensurate with experience

To Apply

Applicants should submit the following in one pdf:

  • Cover letter
  • Resume
  • Writing sample

References will be requested of final applicants.

Friends is an equal opportunity employer and highly values diversity.

Application Timeline

Position is open until filled. Initial review of candidates will begin on Thursday November 1.

Applications will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis until filled. Interviews will be held Nov. 13-14.

Please send your application to Shannon Davis by email to [email protected].

The Friends of the San Juans do such a wonderful job of keeping on top of things like the transit of freighters through the Straits and their impact on whales as well as protecting our environment. Jim and I fell in love with the islands, the wildlife, and fishing. We hope to preserve it, not only for our family but for other families, well into the future.

Glen and Deb Bruels

members, San Juan Island