Legal Fellow

REPORTS TO: Senior Policy Counsel
The National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) builds power at the state and local level to change public policy, galvanize public support, and normalize women’s decisions about abortion and contraception. Using a partnership model, we provide state and local advocates with strategic guidance, hands-on support, and funding to create national change from the ground up. We are a force multiplier – we form strategic partnerships with a wide range of organizations to directly impact the reproductive health and lives of women across the country. Since 2008, NIRH has provided direct grants and hands-on support to nearly 150 reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations in 39 states and 56 localities across the country. In 2018, NIRH’s partnerships and its work in New York State and City span 23 states, including 13 localities.
The National Institute for Reproductive Health Action Fund, with associated PAC’s and IEC, conducts nonpartisan advocacy and electoral engagement to advance reproductive health, rights and justice in states and cities across the country.
This new fellowship position comes at an exceptionally important time in the reproductive rights, health and justice movements, as attacks at the federal level have left states and localities at the forefront of protecting and expanding reproductive freedom for women and all people throughout the nation.  This is an exciting opportunity to be part of a wave of social justice work that will help ensure reproductive freedom for the next generation.
The Legal Fellowship will work closely with the National Institute’s Policy and Strategic Partnerships Team, providing legal research and policy analysis to support our partnerships with organizations throughout the country working to advance reproductive health, rights, and justice, with a particular emphasis on abortion access.  This person will play an integral role with our state and local level initiatives, supporting state and local partners to develop and support proactive policy development.  This staff person will be joining a team that’s engaged in shifting its social justice framework to center racial equity as a core priority, as NIRH staff and board have committed to racial equity and have been engaged in a multi-year process to adopt a racial equity lens across the organization.
This Legal Fellowship is a one year position that reports to the Senior Policy Counsel.  This position is based in New York, NY.
The Legal Fellow’s primary job responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Tracking and analyzing reproductive rights legislation in states and localities around the country;
  • Supporting provision of technical assistance to local advocates;
  • Conducting legal research, in support of both proactive legislation and administrative policy work;
  • Preparing analyses of state legislation and regulations;
  • Writing public education materials for state advocacy campaigns and about state legislative trends;
  • Drafting advocacy materials;
  • Helping manage summer legal internship program and supervise student interns;
  • Speaking about reproductive rights; and
  • Working with the Senior Policy Counsel, the Senior Manage of Special Initiatives and other Policy and Partnerships staff on additional legislative and advocacy projects.


  • J.D. degree
  • 1 to 2 years relevant work experience, including experience prior to law school.
  • Capable of analyzing complex legal issues
  • Strong legal research and writing skills
  • Some legislative, coalition, and/or political experience preferred
  • Ability to communicate clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing
  • Familiarity working as a team player.
  • Experience and comfort with speaking regularly in front of diverse audiences.
  • Ability to travel throughout the country for meetings and conferences.
  • Deep commitment to progressive social justice goals, preferably with experience working on reproductive justice, health or rights.

DURATION OF POSITION:  This is a full-time, one-year fellowship beginning immediately.

  • A salary of $55,000.
  • A comprehensive benefits package including employer-paid health insurance, dental insurance, a 401k retirement plan with employer contribution after 6 months, TransitChek benefits, and generous paid time off
  • Summer Fridays
  • A friendly and supportive working environment with people passionate about what they do

Email a thoughtful cover letter, legal writing sample, resume, and unofficial transcript to [email protected] with “Legal Fellow” in the subject line. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. All applications must be received via email. No phone inquiries please.
The National Institute for Reproductive Health is an equal opportunity employer. NIRH strives to build and support an equitable work community that attracts, develops, and retains exceptional people. As a member of the reproductive freedom movement, NIRH aims to foster leadership and raise the voices of historically marginalized people, including but not limited to Black people and people of color, indigenous/native people, LGBTQ, gender non-conforming, and gender non-binary people, people with disabilities, immigrants, and low income people. We strongly encourage candidates of these and other diverse backgrounds to apply.