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Managing Lawyer - Western Australia

Environmental Defenders Office Ltd
  • Location: Boorloo/ Perth
  • Term: 2-year contract
  • Job Type: Full-time 37.5 hours per week
  • Remuneration: SCHADS Level 8: 1 FTE $127,140 - $141,668 + 11% super + 17.5% Annual Leave Loading
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and members of the Global Majority* are particularly encouraged to apply
  • Job title: Managing Lawyer – Western Australia
  • Reporting to: Legal Director

Environmental Defenders Office (EDO) is the largest environmental legal centre in the Australia Pacific, dedicated to protecting our climate, communities, and shared environment by providing access to justice, running ground-breaking litigation and leading law reform advocacy.

As the region’s legal experts in our field, we aim to be a brave, unified, and focused team, committed to inclusion and excellence in all that we do. We strive to be a diverse and inclusive workplace supporting a highly skilled, engaged, and effective team, where everyone can feel that they belong.

The Opportunity

We are recruiting a Managing Lawyer, who is expected to carry out legal responsibilities, as well as supervise legal staff in delivering on all legal services.

The Managing Lawyer, Western Australia is responsible for EDO’s Western Australia Legal Practice and will engage with legal frameworks and provision of legal services within Western Australia surrounding climate change, and environmental protection and justice in Western Australia. The Managing Lawyer will also successfully oversee a programme of legal work aligned with the organisation’s strategic priorities and as agreed with the Legal Director.

It is expected that you will be largely self-directed in the carrying out of day-to-day duties of the position with responsibility for managing staff and relationships within Western Australia.

The Managing Lawyer will be expected to work closely with the Legal Director and other Managing Lawyers as relevant to develop and implement planning and actively manage the legal practice operating in Western Australia. The role will work with a high level of autonomy and self-direction. This may include leading on media work, seminars, publications, as well as having carriage of litigation, law reform and advice work, supervision of staff and practice management.

Candidate Profile

We are looking for someone who has strong relationship building skills and is confident in developing trusted relationships with their team and the wider EDO.

You are a keen people manager who will also be comfortable working with diverse communities, and in remote and isolated areas. You will have resilience, tenacity, and compassion. 

You will have the ability to lead a team, empower them and work collaboratively with solicitors across Australia.

This position represents an opportunity to engage with legal issues surrounding climate change, cultural heritage, environmental protection, and environmental justice in Western Australia.

The role offers a high level of autonomy, independent and strategic thinking, a skilled communicator and litigator, and someone who can demonstrate an ability to think outside the box and deliver effective results for clients. You are comfortable to work with a diverse range of clients and other stakeholders, including government, partner organisations and local media. 

Lawyers who want a chance to think creatively about delivering systemic change in relation to fossil fuel developments and climate change are strongly encouraged to apply.

You will have an unrestricted practicing certificate, and strong PAE working as a senior lawyer with demonstrated strong litigation experience and excellent leadership.

EDO is a diverse and inclusive workplace. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and members of the Global Majority* are particularly encouraged to apply.

Key Selection Criteria


  • An unrestricted practicing certificate in an Australian jurisdiction, or entitlement to one
  • A minimum of 8 years PAE working as a solicitor with litigation experience, 10 + years PAE highly desirable

Core skills:

  • Strong autonomous litigation focus
  • Strong problem-solving skills and ability to make sound judgments and decisions based on consideration of different views
  • Capacity to supervise legal staff in delivering on advice and litigation work
  • Competence in mentoring lawyers and overseeing their performance and development
  • Demonstrated ability to work productively and to deadlines
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills suited to a range of audiences

Substantive experience:

  • Demonstrated litigation experience in administrative or environmental law and/or related disciplines
  • Demonstrated experience in administrative and/or environmental law highly desirable
  • Demonstrated experience in supervising legal staff in delivering advice and litigation work, including responsibility for reviewing and approving court documents and associated work
  • Demonstrated experience in undertaking law reform or policy
  • Demonstrated experience working with First Nations peoples or diverse communities and individuals highly desirable

Personal qualities and cultural competency:

  • A champion of EDO values
  • Strong initiative and self-motivation
  • Commitment to the protection of human rights and the environment
  • A strong sense of ethics and understanding of professional obligations
  • Demonstrated awareness of, and sensitivity to, the needs and concerns of First Nations peoples and peoples from diverse cultures, backgrounds and orientations in both the delivery of our work and our internal culture
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a collaborative and team-based environment

Our culture and benefits

We care deeply about creating a workplace where our team members feel valued, respected, and empowered. We are committed to providing equal opportunity regardless of gender identity, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, or life stage. 

  • The chance to be part of the largest environmental legal practice in the Australia-Pacific 
  • A very flexible and family-friendly workplace 
  • Option to work from home and the office
  • 8 weeks paid parental leave, regardless of gender or carer status
  • 15 days personal/carer’s leave per year
  • 3 days paid cultural leave per year
  • Extra leave over the Christmas period
  • Access to Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
  • Ongoing professional development opportunities 
  • EDO proudly has a JEDI (Justice, Equality, Diversity, Inclusion) Committee and a Mental Health Ambassador Committee, and has developed a First Nations Program with the aid of indigenous-led consultancies. 
  • Three Affinity groups for the following: Disability, Global Majority* and LGBTQIA+

*Global Majority is a collective term that first and foremost speaks to and encourages those so-called, to think of themselves as belonging to the majority on planet earth. It refers to people who are Black, African, Asian, Brown, dual-heritage, indigenous to the global south, and or, have been racialised as ‘ethnic minorities’.

Our Values

  • Commitment – We are committed to; a united organisation, to each other, to collaboration, to justice, to our communities and to creating a world where nature thrives.
  • Diversity – We respect First Nations Peoples’ knowledges and experiences, and work with them to protect their Countries and cultures.
  • Integrity – We work effectively, efficiently, strategically, professionally, and ethically; “justice is in our nature”.
  • Vision – We lead change and environmental empowerment using innovation, creativity, and courage.

How to apply

Click 'Apply Now' to submit your application.

Applications must include a CV and a letter that clearly addresses each of the key selection criteria.

Other Information

All offers of employment may be subject to satisfactory background checks including a National Police Check, disclosure of previous or current disciplinary action, referee checks, proof of eligibility to work in Australia and qualification checks.

Please note: Your application may be considered for future roles at the EDO within the next 12 months without additional advertising. Please notify us in your application if you would not like to be considered for similar roles beyond this recruitment.

If you have any accessibility needs for the recruitment or interviewing process, please let us know in your application or by emailing [email protected] using the subject line: Managing Lawyer - Western Australia enquiry via EthicalJobs.

A position description is attached.

How to apply

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