Texas Defender Service (TDS) – Capital Defense Job Openings

Executive Director – Texas Defender Service

Texas Defender Service (TDS) is seeking an Executive Director. TDS is a private, 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to safeguarding the fairness and accuracy of the Texas criminal justice system, with an emphasis on improving the quality of legal representation provided to those facing the death penalty. TDS’s mission includes:

(1) Direct representation at the trial and post-conviction level, including cases with the potential to challenge systemic inequities;
(2) Leveraging TDS’s knowledge about systemic injustices to advocate for legislative reform through the use of reports, media outreach and other public information opportunities;
(3) Consulting with and training attorneys at the trial and post-conviction levels to better enable them to advocate skillfully and vigorously for their clients, and serving as a resource for trial and postconviction counsel; and
(4) Monitoring and researching implementation of the Texas Fair Defense Act and other statutes in active death penalty counties, and using the data as the basis for administrative reform, advocacy, public education, and litigation.

TDS has offices in Houston and Austin. The Executive Director could be located in either office.

Since its inception in 1995, TDS has functioned as a vital safety net, watchdog, and agent for reform—roles that it is uniquely situated to perform due to its status as a non-governmental agency. The Executive Director will be responsible for ensuring that TDS continues its mission and remains a dynamic force in the Texas and national capital defense communities.

The Executive Director is expected to manage the various TDS missions—direct representation, consulting, training, and research. To accomplish these goals, the Executive Director must supervise two law offices and work collaboratively with a team consisting of the CFO, Post-Conviction Director, Trial Project Director, and Policy Director.

Experience in criminal defense and/or capital litigation and a demonstrated commitment to serving indigent persons. Experience in policy development is of interest, but not required.

Salary is commensurate with experience, benefits package provided.

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, but should be submitted before February 28, 2017. Interested persons are invited to send a cover letter and resume to: Amanda Marzullo, Interim Executive Director & Search Committee Chair at

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