Associate In-House Counsel

Open Philanthropy is looking to hire an Associate In-House Counsel (title flexible) to help manage legal issues related to grantmaking, contracts, and various aspects of operations. Our staff of ~50 currently gives away $150-$250 million per year with the aim of doing as much good as we can per dollar, in causes like global health and development, farm animal welfare, and potential risks from advanced artificial intelligence. Over the next decade, we plan to increase our giving by several times while continuing to raise our bar for impact.

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The application deadline for this role is Friday, December 10, at 11:59 PM PST.

About the Role

You would join the team as our second legal hire, and work alongside In-House Counsel Molly Kovite to help our growing team navigate legal questions, and collaborate with staff to generate solutions.

Your immediate responsibilities will include the following:

  • Taking ownership of high-priority legal projects and developing creative solutions to legal issues faced by our staff.
  • Managing our relationship with outside legal counsel.
  • Resolving a wide range of legal questions from grantmaking staff and/or grantees, as well as handling compliance, structural, and contractual issues related to grantmaking (examples could include: conducting due diligence on international grants, offering advice to the grants team on choosing the optimal vehicle for routing each grant, drafting grant agreements and leading term negotiations or discussions with grantees, and training staff on legal issues related to grantmaking).
  • Maintaining our contractor, employee, grant, scholarship, and other legal agreements.
  • Answering internal HR questions related to offer letters, NDAs, contracts, and other employee relations issues.
  • Developing an understanding of OP’s broader priorities and proactively seeking out ways to help us achieve our goals.

Our mission is to fund the most impactful work we can identify. To ensure we are able to carry out our program staff’s recommendations for giving, Open Philanthropy is made up of several affiliated organizations and we work with entities including a 501(c)(3) private foundation, a 501(c)(3) public charity, a 501(c)(4) organization, and a donor-advised fund at an outside charitable organization. We make general support and project grants to U.S. nonprofits, international grants requiring additional diligence and reporting, scholarships and research grants, investments in for-profit companies, and contributions to support lobbying and political work. We don’t expect you to be familiar with all these areas of grantmaking yet — but developing an understanding of the trade-offs between different giving vehicles and helping us come up with creative solutions for routing grants would be a key component of the role.

About You

You might be a good fit if you:

  • Communicate clearly about legal considerations to non-legal audiences. You are impatient with unnecessary legalese, delays, and over-complications, and are comfortable seeking creative or unconventional solutions to help us achieve our programmatic goals. Our priority is generally to get resources to grantees as simply and efficiently as possible while still protecting the organization’s interests.
  • Are practical about risk and don’t default to “worst case scenario” assessments; are comfortable comparing and communicating different risks in terms of how likely they are.
  • Are comfortable quickly getting up to speed in unfamiliar areas of law. No prior knowledge or experience with nonprofit law, LLCs, non-traditional philanthropic funding models, grants management and/or international grantmaking is required, but you should be excited to learn new areas of law while on the job.
  • Are flexible about the work you do and ready to help in many different capacities. We’re a small organization, and your day-to-day responsibilities would run the gamut from reviewing basic contracts to advising on complex legal matters to managing operational projects.
  • Are familiar with the ideas of effective altruism and are excited to work at an EA-aligned organization.

We’d prefer candidates to have 4+ years experience practicing in the legal field, but are open to considering candidates with less experience. We’d also be willing to consider individuals with significantly more experience and would be open to customizing and expanding the job duties based on skills, experience, and fit with Open Philanthropy’s needs.

If this sounds like you, and you are interested in using your legal expertise to help us achieve our mission of improving the world as much as possible, we hope you’ll apply. (And if you are excited about this work and on the fence about applying because you are unsure whether you are qualified, we would strongly encourage you to err on the side of applying.)

Additional Information

  • The baseline compensation for this role is $204,031.35, which includes a base salary of $184,531.35 and an unconditional 401(k) grant of $19,5001; this compensation figure assumes roughly four years of relevant experience. However, we are willing to consider a higher compensation, and a wider scope of responsibilities, for more experienced candidates (please note that less experienced candidates may come in at a lower compensation level).
  • We’d ideally like someone to start by February 2022, but the start date is flexible.
  • This is a full-time position, which could be done fully remotely or from our San Francisco office. However, you must either be licensed to practice in California, or meet the requirements for California’s registered in-house counsel program (which will require you to have residence in California).
  • We offer a comprehensive benefits package including full health, dental, vision and life insurance, flexible work hours and location, and a stipend for ergonomic equipment.

We are committed to fostering a culture of inclusion and encourage individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences to apply. We especially encourage applications from self-identified women and people of color who are excited about contributing to our mission. Open Philanthropy is an equal opportunity employer. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, or have any other questions about applying, please contact [email protected].

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  • 1. This salary assumes a U.S. location not in San Francisco or Washington D.C. There will be cost-of-living adjustments upwards applied for candidates based out of San Francisco or Washington, D.C.