Our environment is cleaner, our medicine is better, and our cars are safer today, thanks to Americans—represented by trial attorneys—who stood up to big corporations and held them accountable in court.
Since 1954, the Connecticut Trial Lawyers Association (CTLA) has worked to preserve individual rights and ensure a fair and balanced civil justice system that works for everyone. CTLA members ensure that ordinary citizens can seek justice in our nation’s courtrooms on an equal footing with major corporations. We have grown to become one of the most respected lobbying forces in our state, advocating for tough laws that hold industries and corporations accountable. Our representation levels the playing field, giving everyday people a fighting chance against larger organizations.
Our work personally affects the lives of every citizen. We believe that communities can only thrive when citizens are well-informed and involved, and when we have a civil justice system that works for everyone. Our work is ongoing because the legal landscape is constantly evolving, from self-driving vehicles to forced arbitration clauses that hide corporate wrongdoing and evade responsibility. We work hard to ensure that our members stay at the forefront of understanding and responding to issues that affect every citizen in Connecticut.
In the high profile role of executive director, you will travel the state, meeting with our members, learning about their communities, understanding the goals for their legal practices, and exploring new ways to support our members, their elected representatives, and their communities. You will develop relationships with legislators and other leaders, the media, and the leaders of other like-minded organizations.
In this role, you will learn from, share information with, and work in close partnership with our external political consulting firm, as well as your counterparts at the American Association for Justice (AAJ) and the National Association of Trial Lawyer Executives (NATLE). Through your own research and work with your colleagues, you will be at the forefront of monitoring legal issues nationally and intimately engaged in leading grassroots support for legislative efforts within Connecticut.
Your strategic perspective and your personal relationships will help CTLA attract new members, deepen engagement with current members, forge new alliances, and develop effective approaches that benefit everyone. In your work, you will be supported by a remarkably talented and experienced staff who work hard every day to provide continuing legal education and other services that help our members grow, thrive, and stay at the forefront of the legal profession. You will also support and be supported by an active and engaged board of governors.
Responsibilities as Executive Director
We will look to you to strengthen CTLA capabilities in these key focus areas:
- Membership engagement: You will get to know our members, personally welcoming them, learning their interests, providing available resources, and deepening our knowledge about each member and the issues in their communities and legislative districts.
- New member development: In collaboration with the membership committee, you will help develop engaging value propositions that are relevant to every prospective member, regardless of their location, type of legal practice, or stage of career.
- Legislative support: You will work closely with our outside lobbying firm to advance CTLA’s legislative agenda, leveraging your knowledge and relationships to mount effective grassroots action.
- Communications, media, public relations, and community engagement: You will work closely with the CTLA president to engage with the media. You will help develop talking points and recommend when and where to take action on issues affecting our membership. You will forge partnerships with community organizations to engage members in charitable and educational activities.
- Continuing legal education: CTLA offers an array of very well regarded seminars and education programs for members. You will explore new approaches to education to continue to keep our programs relevant, effective, and on the cutting edge so members at every stage of their career receive the training they need to be successful and ethical leaders in the profession.
- Continuity in leadership: Our board of governors elects a new president annually. As executive director, you will provide continuity in our ongoing work, ensuring that each incoming president has the resources they need to be successful and that strategic organizational priorities are maintained year-over-year.
- Staff management: Leading a team of three, you will provide guidance and mentorship for all employees, ensuring the highest standards of integrity and customer service for our members. You will also work closely with your colleagues at NATLE to learn about and apply best practices.
CTLA is a non-profit association dedicated to creating and maintaining a more just society by preserving individual rights within the civil justice system to ensure that the civil justice system works for all people; hold wrongdoers accountable regardless of their corporate, government, association, or individual status; protect consumer rights and safeguard the environment; advance the cause of those whose person or property is injured or damaged; preserve and protect access to the courts and jury system of Connecticut and the nation; and uphold the honor and integrity of the profession of law.
Desired Qualifications of the Executive Director
The following kinds of experience are preferred:
- 10 plus years of experience in a membership-driven organization, working with a board.
- Expertise in the legal/legislative arena. Familiarity with grassroots lobbying efforts. Experience in the Connecticut judiciary system is a plus. (Experience working in a trial lawyer, bar, or other legal organization is a plus.)
- Experience managing external communications, public relations, and media engagement.
- Experience setting strategic priorities for continuing education programs.
- Experience working with partner organizations or coalitions.
Desired Attributes of the Executive Director
- Strategic rapport builder. A natural relationship builder, you thrive on conversing with others and learning their point of view. You are adept at advancing your agenda and gaining buy-in from others. You are diplomatic and seen as an “honest broker.” You never abandon your principles but are always willing to set aside your personal ideology to “reach across the aisle” and form effective alliances to achieve a worthy goal.
- Confident yet humble. You are comfortable serving as the public face of the organization when needed, but also know when to step back and let others lead.
- Adaptive leader. You know how to adapt your approach to work well with different leadership styles while maintaining organizational consistency.
- Servant leader. You enjoy making other people look good and graciously support others who may not have the time they need to accomplish all that they want to achieve. You are likable, approachable, personable, engaging, and empathetic.
- Inspiring. You are forward-looking and generate excitement. People genuinely enjoy being around you and following your lead. People admire you for your charisma, optimism, and your drive to achieve lasting results that benefit everyone.
- Respectful. You have the judgment to know when to ask, and what to ask for, from others. You are politely persistent and effective at driving results through volunteers, without appearing to be overly demanding.
- Disciplined. You are highly organized with strong follow-through skills. You keep track of many moving parts, hold others accountable, and deliver information to a multitude of stakeholders (especially during times of change) so that initiatives are not forgotten.
- Curious. You enjoy learning from others and are flexible in your approach to problem solving.
What’s Attractive to the Right Executive Director Candidate?
- This is a high profile, highly visible position where you will form lasting relationships with community leaders. You will have the opportunity to work with political and community leaders in every corner of the state.
- The nature of your work will keep you at the forefront of political, economic, social, technological, legal, and environmental forces that shape the lives of everyone in Connecticut. Your work is vitally necessary to people in every community.
- The volunteer leadership you support is bright, engaged, and supportive—a terrific resource in helping you be successful.
- CTLA is respected, financially strong, and well-managed, with ample financial reserves, a highly skilled staff, and outstanding relationships with legislators and community leaders statewide.
To Apply for the Executive Director with CTLA
You can Apply on this page, or simply email your resume to Bob Corlett at firstname.lastname@example.org with “CTLA – Executive Director / 2017-2261 SA” as the subject of the email.
We welcome candidates from backgrounds including (but not limited to): Executive Director, President, Chief Executive Officer, CEO, Chief Operating Officer, COO, Deputy Executive Director, Vice President of Strategy, Director of Government Affairs, Director of Legislative Affairs, and Director of Public Policy.
Staffing Advisors is committed to helping our clients create a diverse work environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. Some positions may require pre-employment screening potentially including a criminal background check, verification of academic credentials, licenses, certifications, and/or verification of work history.