General Counsel


Position Summary

HIAS seeks a General Counsel to lead strategic and tactical legal initiatives, oversee global registration of HIAS-branded entities, draft and review contracts and grants, conduct confidential internal investigations, and manage organizational risk and compliance.

The incumbent currently provides senior management with counsel and legal advice on HIAS initiatives, providing guidance on legal and risk compliance matters for programs and initiatives funded by governmental, inter-governmental, transnational and private donors, and they also manage the Office of General Counsel (OGC) and its staff.

Essential Functions

Serves as the chief legal counsel on organizational matters and ensures that practices comply with applicable laws and policies, and donor requirements.Serves as chief legal advisor to the President & CEO, senior management, headquarters components and HIAS-branded entities internationally, with a portfolio that includes over 20 regional and country offices, as well as closely related entities, including the HIAS Foundation and the HIAS Economic Advancement Fund (micro-enterprise).Advises the Board of Directors on actual and potential conflicts of interest and prepares quarterly reports for the Board on OGC activities and risk management at HIAS.Manages OGC, including budget development and execution, processing of departmental expenses, and supervision of a small team.Oversees the drafting or legal review of all global and headquarters policies and procedures.Supervises the risk management function at HIAS to identify, analyze, treat, monitor and communicate enterprise-level risks, ensuring proper levels of insurance globally.Supervises the drafting and legal review of contracts, grants, registration and other legal and governance documents, including MOUs, vendor agreements, federal and state cooperative agreements, confidentiality agreements, waivers, affiliation and service-level agreements, IP licensing agreements, real estate leases and other business contracts.Oversees all ethics and whistleblowing investigations, including fraud, conflicts of interest, sexual exploitation and abuse, labor, and other sensitive issues, and supports the work of the Board’s Audit & Risk Committee.Reviews all litigation requests and settlement agreements.Identifies issues requiring specialized outside counsel, including country-level registrations and external investigations, and oversees the recruitment, selection, management, evaluation, and retention of all outside counsel.Collaborates with other headquarter components, including Finance, IT, HR, and Internal Audit, to solidify internal controls and ensure honest and efficient use of HIAS resources.Advises and supports HR regarding employment legal issues in the US and in global offices.Provides counsel to the development team on donor bequests made to HIAS.Serves on relevant HIAS leadership teams and committees, in line with the organizational governance structure.Oversees the content and participates in the provision of regular training for HIAS staff on key ethics, risk and compliance policies, procedures and guidance.Performs other duties as assigned.

Qualifications & Requirements

A Juris Doctor degree and D.C., Maryland and/or New York Bar membership.12-15+ years of varied legal experience in progressively more complex roles.Familiarity with non-profit law and governance.Experience working within an NGO, humanitarian or international organization.Experience leading a team of professionals, effectively delegating work and managing a budget.Results-oriented with strong customer service skills and ability to operate at all levels of an organization in a highly complex environment.Ability to work effectively within a multi-cultural organization.Excellent interpersonal, organizational and communication skills, both oral and written.Ability to manage difficult and complex situations with tact and excellent judgment.Self-starter who is detailed-oriented.Team-player comfortable working in a fast-paced environment.Proficiency with MS Office, particularly Excel and PowerPoint.Ability to travel internationally up to 10% of the time to complex operating environments.Travel, to include travel to insecure operating environments, may be required.

Hiring Process

We are committed to a fair and respectful hiring process, and we do our absolute best to respond to every applicant. We prioritize communication and transparency with all candidates, even those who are not moving forward. Here’s a snapshot of our hiring process:

Step 1: Submit your application!

Step 2: Phone screen with a HIAS recruiter.

Step 3: Video interview with the hiring manager.

Step 4: Video interview with a panel of HIAS employees.

Step 5: Online reference check with SkillSurvey.

Step 6: Offer and background check with Shield Screening or HireRight.

Step 7: Start your professional journey with HIAS!

Note: Some of our hiring processes may vary, and not all candidates will advance to each step.

About Us

Over one hundred years ago, the Jewish community founded HIAS (originally the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society) in New York City, the immigrant gateway to America. Supporting Jews fleeing persecution and poverty in Eastern Europe, our founders were guided by the traditions, texts and history of the Jewish people—a history of oppression, displacement and diaspora. HIAS has since helped generations of Jews facing violence because of who they were, and HIAS remains committed to helping Jewish refugees anywhere in the world. Today, our clients at HIAS come from diverse faiths, ethnicities and backgrounds, as do our staff. We bring our experience, history and values to our work across five continents, ensuring that refugees today receive the vital services and opportunities they need to thrive.

HIAS is a learning community, committed to diversity and inclusion. We do our work with integrity, accountability, transparency and a commitment to the highest ethical standards. We seek employees from diverse backgrounds and life experiences to join our teams located in the United States and across the globe. People who identify as BIPOC, people with disabilities, people from the LGBTQ+ community and people with lived experiences of forced displacement or immigration are all encouraged to apply. We are committed to building a diverse workforce that reflects our vision, mission and values.


HIAS stands for a world in which refugees find welcome, safety and opportunity.


Drawing on our Jewish values and history, HIAS provides vital services to refugees and asylum seekers around the world and advocates for their fundamental rights so they can rebuild their lives.



Acogimiento Hospitalité Hachnasat Orchim

We Welcome the Stranger


Justicia Justice Tzedek

We Pursue Justice


Empatía Empathie Chesed

We Approach our Clients with Empathy


Compañerismo Coopération Chevruta

We Believe in Changing the World through Partnership


Coraje Courage Ometz

We Act with Courage to Build a Better World


Resiliencia Résilience Ruach

We Adapt and Thrive, Continuously Demonstrating our Resilience


HIAS is committed to a diverse and inclusive workplace. As an equal opportunity employer, all qualified applicants will be considered for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, ethnic background, ancestry, citizenship status, religious creed, age, sex, gender, sexual orientation, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, registered domestic partner or civil union status, familial status, pregnancy, childbirth, military status, protected veteran status, political orientation or other legally protected status.


HIAS is committed to the protection of children, vulnerable adults and any other person from any harm caused directly or indirectly due to their coming into contact with HIAS. We will not tolerate sexual exploitation, abuse or any form of child abuse or neglect by our staff or associated personnel. Any candidate offered a job with HIAS will be expected to sign and adhere to HIAS’ Code of Conduct and Safeguarding policies. All offers of employment will be subject to satisfactory references and appropriate screening checks, which can include criminal records. HIAS also participates in the Inter-Agency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme . In line with this Scheme, we will request information from job applicants’ previous employers about any findings of sexual exploitation, sexual abuse and/or sexual harassment during employment, or incidents under investigation when the applicant left employment. Likewise, HIAS will share this information when other organizations inquire about current and former HIAS staff as part of their recruitment process. By submitting an application, the job applicant confirms their understanding of these recruitment procedures.

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