Executive Director - Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network

PLAN, inc. logo

Job Announcement
Executive Director
Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network

The Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network, Inc. (PLAN) seeks an outstanding strategic and collaborative leader to serve as its next Executive Director.

PLAN is a client-centered nonprofit organization established to improve the availability and quality of civil legal aid for low-income people across Pennsylvania. PLAN supports a statewide consortium of 15 independently-run legal aid programs. It coordinates the delivery of civil legal assistance to the Pennsylvanians who need it most. PLAN advocates for and delivers funding for the network, supports the programs delivering legal aid through training and technical assistance, and ensures effective use of funds.

The Executive Director has the opportunity to work with a strong, experienced staff and exceptional leaders across the Commonwealth, and with them to envision and deliver legal services that low-income Pennsylvanians urgently need.

This position is an amazing opportunity for a leader, manager and communicator who is passionate about the delivery of justice to communities throughout Pennsylvania.

More about PLAN:

Founded in 1973, PLAN provides leadership, strategic oversight, technical assistance, training, and support to nine regional legal aid programs that serve clients in every county, and six specialized legal aid programs that provide legal services in specialized areas of the law or to special groups of eligible clients.

PLAN delivers a wide range of support to legal aid providers, including extensive training which features regular substantive updates and an annual conference, as well as the annually funded Martin Luther King, Junior (MLK) internships and fellowships. PLAN also supports the statewide legal aid website and provides resources to connect legal aid advocates in specific practice areas across the state. It leads statewide communications regarding legal aid in Pennsylvania. PLAN monitors programmatic and fiscal compliance of the network with funder requirements, while providing extensive technical support to achieve that compliance.

PLAN currently has thirteen staff, the majority of whom are based in the Harrisburg office. PLAN staff have, since the start of the pandemic, been working a mix of remote and hybrid schedules. It is anticipated that PLAN will continue to have a hybrid work model as the pandemic eases.

PLAN has a thirteen-member Board of Directors, which includes representatives of client groups, legal aid programs, the legislature, the Judiciary, and the Bar.

For more information about PLAN, visit: https://palegalaid.net/

About the Executive Director position:

PLAN’s Executive Director is responsible for:

  • Strategic and collaborative leadership to accomplish PLAN’s mission to improve the availability and quality of civil legal aid for low-income people across the Commonwealth
  • Expert and effective advocacy and lobbying on behalf of low-income clients and communities, and PLAN network organizations, in the legislature, with governmental agencies, in the media, and beyond
  • Ensuring effective systems for the delivery of high-quality legal services, and grantee financial and programmatic accountability
  • Successful management of the $36 million PLAN network in accordance with the policies and programmatic decisions of the PLAN Board of Directors and the requirements of funders
  • Expanding financial support for the network’s delivery of legal services, and ensuring PLAN’s fiscal strength
  • Ensuring that client voices are heard and incorporated at all levels of advocacy
  • Recruiting, hiring and retaining diverse staff and maintaining an inclusive and equitable work environment
  • Monitoring funding trends and opportunities in Pennsylvania and nationally, and work to increase the availability funding for civil legal aid
  • Maintaining and expanding support for the legal aid network from the Pennsylvania General Assembly; executive branch (e.g., governor, attorney general); Pennsylvania Supreme Court and its Pennsylvania IOLTA Board; state and county bar associations; and state and national access to justice entities such as the American Bar Association, Pennsylvania Bar Association, National Association of IOLTA Programs, National Legal Aid and Defender Association, and Legal Services Corporation.

Required qualifications of the Executive Director:

  • Juris Doctor degree, or comparable graduate degree in business, organizational leadership, public administration, sociology, social work or another related field. Significant experience performing the responsibilities may substitute for the education requirement
  • Significant experience protecting and advancing the rights of marginalized and disadvantaged populations.
  • Demonstrated skill as an effective, non-partisan relationship builder, a partner in social service and client networks, and a collaborator with justice-focused private and government entities
  • Commitment to supporting diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Experience managing staff who are responsible for operations budgets, communications and program
  • Ability to manage wide-ranging responsibilities and to assist others in managing their responsibilities in a demanding environment
  • Outstanding communication skills orally and in writing with a range of audiences and stakeholders
  • Experience working effectively with multiple organizations and individuals with diverse perspectives
  • Ability to bring vision, integrity, courage, intelligence, creativity, energy, humor, and compassion to the challenges of this demanding position.

Preferred qualifications of the Executive Director

(we recognize that it is unlikely that any candidate will possess all relevant qualifications):

  • Experience with nonprofit management, and particularly legal aid experience

  • Experience advocating with government decision-makers, especially the branches of Pennsylvania’s state government (i.e., executive, legislative, and judicial) as well as the bar

  • Experience working productively with a highly engaged board of directors

  • Strength in nonprofit budgeting, fiscal compliance, grant dispersal processes, and grant compliance

  • Successful fundraising experience

  • Experience with relevant technology and its application to effective communication and efficient delivery of services.


The first-year salary for the Executive Director is budgeted from $130,000 - $150,000, depending on experience. Staff are offered excellent benefits, including health, dental, vision insurance, life, and disability insurance, along with retirement benefits. Relocation expenses will be reimbursed as may be necessary and negotiated.

Application Process:

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. To receive full consideration, candidates are urged to submit their application by late February 2022.

Applicants should e-mail a resume with a cover letter that explains why you are interested in the Executive Director position, and why you feel you could be successful in the position. Applications should be e-mailed to EDHiring@PALegalAid.net.

The Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer. We seek to build diversity, equity and inclusion within our organization, throughout our network, and in partnership and allyship with the communities we serve.


Sign up for our newsletter to stay informed about the latest news and updates!

Sign Up