The Public Defender Division of the Committee for Public Counsel Services, the public defender agency of Massachusetts, is seeking a superior and district court practitioner for a Trial Attorney position in our Worcester Public Defender Division Office, covering Worcester County. The Public Defender Division provides legal representation and zealous advocacy to the indigent community.

We fight for equal justice and human dignity by supporting our clients in achieving their legal and life goals. We zealously advocate for the rights of individuals and promote just public policy to protect the rights of all.

Our Values

Courage   •   Accountability   •   Respect   •   Excellence

DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION MISSION STATEMENT

CPCS is committed to protecting the fundamental constitutional and human rights of our assigned clients through zealous advocacy, community-oriented defense, and the fullness of excellent legal representation.  We are dedicated to building and maintaining strong professional relationships, while striving to accept, listen to and respect the diverse circumstances of each client, as we dedicate ourselves to meeting their individual needs.  It is our CPCS mission to achieve these goals, and in furtherance thereof, we embrace and endorse diversity, equity and inclusion as our core values as we maintain a steadfast commitment to: (1) Ensure that CPCS management and staff members represent a broad range of human differences and experience; (2) Provide a work climate that is respectful and supports success; and (3) Promote the dignity and well-being of all staff members. CPCS leadership is responsible for ensuring equity, diversity, and inclusion. The ability to achieve these goals with any level of certainty is ultimately the responsibility of each member of the CPCS community.

AGENCY OVERVIEW

CPCS is the state agency in Massachusetts responsible for providing an attorney when the state or federal constitution or a state statute requires the appointment of an attorney for a person who cannot afford to retain one.  The agency provides representation in criminal, delinquency, youthful offender, family regulation, guardianship, mental health, sexually dangerous person, and sex offender registry cases, as well as in appeals and post-conviction and post-judgment proceedings related to those matters.

The clients we represent are diverse across every context imaginable and bring many unique cultural dimensions to the matters we address. This reality creates a critical need for CPCS staff to be culturally competent and able to work well with people of different races, ethnicities, genders and/or sexual orientation identities, abilities, and limited English proficiency, among other protected characteristics.

OFFICE OVERVIEW

The Public Defender Division of CPCS, Worcester Office is located in downtown Worcester, a five-time recipient of the All-American City Award.  It is New England’s second largest city and combines the historic charm of a small town with the conveniences of a thriving metropolis.  With more than 70 cultural venues, including world-class museums, concert halls, theaters, renowned breweries, and over 100 local restaurants, it also provides a central location from which to visit all of New England, located 45 minutes from both Boston and Rhode Island.

POSITION OVERVIEW

The Public Defender Division of CPCS is seeking a superior court practitioner to provide criminal defense representation in Worcester County.  The Public Defender Division offices provide legal representation and advocacy to indigent clients who are charged with criminal offenses in both the District and Superior Courts.  The Trial Attorney will represent clients in the Superior and District Courts and occasionally represent clients on interlocutory appeals, civil commitments, as witness before the grand jury or trial court, and in certain collateral matters as permitted by a supervisor. It is expected that the attorney’s caseload will consist of predominately serious Superior Court matters. It is also expected that the attorney will act as an informal mentor and advisor to other staff attorneys in the office.

RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Interviewing clients;
  • Arraignment and bail advocacy;
  • Legal research and writing;
  • Pretrial investigation including visiting crime scenes, locating and interviewing witnesses, collecting and reviewing documentary evidence;
  • Preparing and arguing pretrial motions, affidavits and legal memoranda;
  • Dispositional investigations and advocacy;
  • Jury and bench trials of criminal cases;
  • Litigating cases in the Superior Court as well as the District Court;
  • Representing witnesses before the grand jury or trial court;
  • Representing clients in interlocutory proceedings;
  • Where appropriate, working collaboratively with private attorneys on cases assigned through the Private Counsel Division of CPCS; and,
  • Other duties as assigned.
Requirements
MINIMUM ENTRANCE REQUIREMENTS
  • A Trial Attorney must be committed to serving a culturally diverse, low-income population and must be eligible to practice law in Massachusetts, either as a member of the Massachusetts bar in good standing, or as the member of the bar of another jurisdiction eligible to engage in limited Massachusetts practice under Supreme Judicial Court Rule 3:04;
  • Access to an automobile in order to travel to courts, clients, and investigation locations that are not easily accessible by public transportation; and,
  • Access to a personal computer with home internet access sufficient to work remotely.
QUALIFICATIONS/SKILLS Candidates should possess the following attributes for the position of Trial Attorney:
  • Significant experience as lead counsel on jury trials and evidentiary motions practice in the Superior Court (or equivalent) for a minimum of three (3) years;
  • A demonstrated commitment to the principle of zealous advocacy in the representation of indigent persons in criminal cases;
  • A demonstrated commitment to our organizational values;
  • A commitment to continuing legal and organizational training;
  • Strong interpersonal and analytical skills;
  • Ability to work within a criminal defense-oriented community and capacity to work successfully, both independently and collaboratively; and,
  • Foreign language skills to support interaction with predominant limited English proficient groups in the region are desirable, but not required.
To apply:  please supply a resume and a personal mission statement of no more than two pages detailing your interest in the position, your personal qualities, background, and skills, and what you hope to achieve in this work. EEO Statement The Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS) is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ethnicity, sex, disability, religion, age, veteran or military status, genetic information, gender identity, or sexual orientation as required by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and other applicable federal and state statutes and organizational policies.  Applicants who have questions about equal employment opportunity or who need reasonable accommodations can contact the interim Chief Human Resources Officer.