Special Counsel

Washington D.C.
Nov 17, 2016
Apr 27, 2017
Full Time

About the Agency

This position is open until filled. The first cutoff date for review of applications will be January 5, 2017.

The United States Sentencing Commission is an independent federal agency in the Judicial Branch of government consisting of seven members appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate and two non-voting ex-officio members. The agency staff consists of approximately 100 employees. The Commission develops and revises guidelines for federal district court judges to consider in sentencing offenders convicted of federal crimes. The Commission monitors and evaluates the use of the guidelines, conducts research and education programs on guideline application and sentencing matters generally, produces sentencing-related reports, and recommends improvements in federal sentencing practices and policies.

The Commission is conveniently located next to Union Station on Capitol Hill, and is easily accessible by public transportation, including the Metro, and the MARC and VRE commuter trains. In addition to the federal benefits package, the Commission?s location in the Thurgood Marshall Federal Judiciary Building offers various amenities such as an on-site fitness center, health unit, credit union, day care center, and cafeteria.

  • Not Required

  • No

  • U.S. citizenship required
  • All employees must serve a one year probationary period
    Applicants must have a law degree (JD) from a law school accredited by the American Bar Association. Membership of the bar of a state, territory, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or a federal court of general jurisdiction. Practical experience in drafting legislation, rules, regulations, or policies. To be considered at the GS-15 level, you must have one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-14 in the federal service.

    Applicants must have demonstrated work experience related to the mandatory requirements listed below and must address the qualification requirements in an attached cover letter.

    • Exceptional oral and written communication skills.
    • Working knowledge of federal lawmaking, rulemaking, and policymaking, including thorough understanding of the legislative process; excellent ability to research and analyze case law and legislative history; and familiarity with such topics as statutory interpretation, parliamentary procedure, and administrative law.
    • Excellent ability to analyze, understand and convey to others the effect of proposed legislation.
    • Ability to maintain effective working relationships with agency staff at all levels as well as with key individuals in a variety of other federal organizations and interest groups.
    • Knowledge of or experience in governmental organizations, including the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of the federal government.
    • Ability to handle multiple priorities and meet deadlines.Technical abilities, such as computer experience and knowledge of software applications used to conduct research.

    The following is strongly preferred: Hill experience, preferably with criminal and sentencing policy issues.

    In addition, preference will be given to applicants who have one or more of the following qualifications:

    • Experience in litigating at the trial or appellate levels.
    • Experience as a state appellate law clerk or federal judicial law clerk.
    • Outstanding academic credentials and/or law review or moot court experience.
    • Publications in a law review or other legal publication.
    • Knowledge of the federal criminal justice system and the federal sentencing guidelines.
    • Experience with federal criminal and sentencing policy issues.
    • Significant writing and editing experience, whether legal or non-legal.

    Public Trust - Background Investigation

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