Program Director, The Appellate Project

Position Title: Program Director

Reports to: Founder / Executive Director

Position: Full-Time, Remote, Exempt

Location: Washington, D.C.

Salary: $140,000 – $155,000

About The Appellate Project

Founded in 2019, The Appellate Project is the first organization focused on empowering law students of color to become the next generation of attorneys and judges in our highest courts.

Appellate attorneys and judges make decisions that affect all aspects of our personal lives: our ability to vote, how we are policed, our religious freedom, the quality of our education, our workplaces, healthcare, immigration protections, and much more.

Although many appellate decisions disproportionately impact communities of color, people of color remain greatly underrepresented as both attorneys and judges in our highest courts. TAP’s mission is to change that. Learn more at

The Role

The Appellate Project (TAP) is excited to expand our team with the addition of a Program Director. This individual will be a core member of our leadership team and will work closely with our extraordinary community of students and volunteers. We are looking for a colleague who enjoys building impactful programs and thrives on the innovation, creativity, and collaboration required in a start-up nonprofit environment.

In less than three years, TAP’s programming has empowered nearly 500 law students of color with the access, resources, and training they need to work in our highest courts. TAP’s Mentorship Program pairs law students of color interested in appellate practice with mentors in the appellate field. The program also provides skill-building workshops, guidance on appellate job opportunities, and more. TAP is also launching a summer fellowship program (the “Incubator), which will provide students clerkship support, mentorship, and appellate work experience. The Program Director will develop and execute those programs with the goal of ensuring that they evolve to remain responsive to our participants’ needs. This includes engaging and supervising volunteers, recruiting students and network partners, and ensuring proper stewardship of all stakeholders. 

The Program Director is integral to the success of TAP’s growth. If you enjoy working collaboratively to build community and are excited to develop programming that is redefining how we think about racial equity in our highest courts, we encourage you to apply! 

  • Work collaboratively with TAP’s Founder/Executive Director to help create, implement, and set goals for programming to fulfill the organization’s strategic objectives, leading from a race-equity and student-centered approach;
  • Devise evaluation strategies to monitor and deliver consistent performance and determine the need for improvements; utilize data to identify promising practices, celebrate and share successes, and recommend strategies to promote organizational growth;
  • Build out the operations structure for TAP’s programs, including procedures for effectively managing programs, establishing and adhering to timetables, and recruiting participants and volunteers. Work within CRM to create/maintain an accurate database of various stakeholders and their engagement across programs;
  • Research and identify potential opportunities to grow TAP’s programs, and keeping up with issues in the race equity and appellate fields to help identify areas of opportunity for TAP’s programmatic efforts and overall approach;
  • Collaborate with the Development Director and Executive Director on messaging about the value of TAP’s programmatic efforts to prospective and current funders;
  • Manage all daily program operations and logistics, including communicating regularly with TAP’s varied stakeholders and ensuring that weekly speakers and program participants, mentors, and judges have all necessary materials;
  • Serve as a spokesperson for our programs. This includes assisting in developing strategic materials, managing relationships with stakeholders related to our programs, providing key data to the Executive Director to support press opportunities, and communicating with the broader community via social media; 
  • Develop and implement innovative learning environments that support our programmatic efforts, including incorporating technology that allows our students, attorneys, and judges to connect directly with each other and collaborate virtually;
  • Manage programmatic budgets, including monthly and quarterly reports regarding grant budgets;
  • Create and maintain relationships with other leaders in the race equity and appellate fields to help ensure our students are getting the best possible support; 
  • Manage service providers, vendors, consultants, and project plans as needed to achieve program goals.

The Program Director will be a core member of our leadership team and will have the support of our junior staff members. We are looking for a collegial, collaborative teammate with a minimum of ten years of programmatic or related experience, which includes a successful track record of building and executing high-impact programming (both virtual and in-person), tracking data to measure impact, and leading a team.

We recognize that an individual’s experience is gained through a wide and diverse range of personal, professional, and educational opportunities. When reviewing applications we take a broad look at the combined experiences of each candidate. These are the skills and values we prioritize: 

  • A demonstrated commitment to racial equity, which is the heart of our work;
  • Proven experience as program director or similar management role. This includes a thorough understanding of project/program development and implementation, along with significant experience managing staff, creating and tracking departmental budgets, and overseeing vendors;
  • Strong critical thinking skills with a clear understanding of and comfort with using data to inform programming and measure performance; 
  • Demonstrated ability to build community and work collaboratively with diverse groups, including law firms, judges, funders, and potential partners who can help meet programmatic goals;
  • Strong writing and verbal skills. You can communicate information clearly, especially via presentations, reports, memos, and other strategy-related materials; 
  • Innovative and strategic thinking. You enjoy creative problem solving and aren’t afraid to try a mix of traditional and nontraditional approaches to tackle issues that arise;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills. You are confident in interacting with other staff, external partners, organizations, funders, and consultants;
  • Excellent judgment, strong emotional intelligence, ability to prioritize multiple assignments and handle complex tasks ; 
  • Previous experience with experiential education, entrepreneurship, and/or nonprofit management;
  • Demonstrated success leading students or teams through adoption of new digital tools to foster deeper learning and engagement;
  • Experience working with various technology platforms, including MS Office, program management software, and virtual educational platforms. Experience with CRM a plus; 
  • Familiarity and experience with the legal system, and in particular the appellate system,
    is a plus;
  • Willing to travel at least ~15% of the time, such as for in-person events, conferences, and team meet-ups.

This is a full-time exempt salaried position. The salary range is $140,000 – $155,000 and is commensurate with experience. Benefits include paid vacation, health benefits, paid sick leave, paid holidays, generous stipends for technology and a home office, and robust professional development resources. 

The position is remote, but preference will be given to candidates based in and around the Washington, DC metro area. If a remote candidate is hired, it will be expected that they travel ~2-3 days per month to Washington, DC. Occasional evening and weekend work will also be required, as well as willingness to travel approximately 15% of the time to other places in the country.

The Appellate Project is an equal opportunity employer. We prohibit unlawful discrimination against any employee or applicant for employment based on race, color, religion, sex, gender identity, age, national origin, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation and/or identity, criminal record, marital status, or any other basis prohibited by law. 

Research has shown that traditionally marginalized communities (people of color, people with disabilities, etc.) often don’t apply for jobs if they don’t meet every single qualification. If you think you can do this job but don’t meet every qualification, we encourage you to still apply.

How to Apply

The Appellate Project  has retained the exclusive services of Charity Search Group to coordinate the search for this position. To discuss your suitability for this role, please contact Briana O’Neal ( or visit 

Apply Now:

Job Categories:


Closing Date:

Open until filled


Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis; early application is strongly suggested.

Briana O'Neal

Senior Search Consultant

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