The NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the country’s first and foremost civil and human rights law organization. Founded in 1940 under the leadership of Thurgood Marshall, who subsequently became the first Black U.S. Supreme Court Justice, LDF was launched at a time when the nation’s aspirations for equality and due process of law were stifled by widespread state-sponsored racial inequality. From that era to the present, LDF’s mission has been transformative — to achieve racial justice, equality, and an inclusive society.

LDF’s litigation, public policy advocacy and public education programs in the substantive areas of criminal justice, economic justice, education, and political participation seek to ensure the fundamental and basic human rights of all people to quality education, economic opportunity, the right to vote and fully participate in democracy, and the right to a fair and just judicial system.

Following a decade of measured organizational advancement and progress, LDF is currently in an organization-defining period of transition. Since 2021, LDF has expanded from 130 staff members to 185 across its headquarters in New York City and its office in Washington, DC. By the end of 2023, LDF is projected to grow to 200+ employees and open a third office in Atlanta. In March 2022, Janai S. Nelson assumed the role of President and Director-Counsel after serving nearly eight years as Associate Director-Counsel.

LDF’s Human Resources Department
After a comprehensive assessment and the development of a new human resources strategy, the HR function at LDF is undergoing a significant transformation. Our vision is for LDF to be known for its vibrant culture, for developing its people, and for being a place where top talent comes to make civil rights history.

The Human Resources Department is fortifying its capacity to offer strategic capabilities that respond proactively to workforce requirements and drive organizational results to advance LDF’s mission. The department is growing a team of functional experts who are knowledgeable, trusted, visionary, and creative to collaborate and partner with LDF leaders and advisory groups in applying transformative best practices to attract, support, develop and engage talented staff.

The department is staffed by seven professionals: a Sr. Director, a Deputy Director, two Managers (Total Rewards/HR Technology and Talent Acquisition/Development), an Analyst, a Coordinator, and an Assistant.

The HR strategy includes four key initiatives:

  • Build a dynamic human resources operation and team
  • Promote a culture of wellness, inclusion & joy
  • Drive high performance capability across the organization
  • Support organizational growth and strategy


The Deputy Director, Human Resources will play a significant role in transforming how human resources is done at LDF. S/he will work closely with the Senior Director as a thought partner and trusted collaborator in all aspects of leading a dynamic human resources team and function. S/he will stand in for the Senior Director when the Senior Director is unavailable.

In particular, the Deputy Director will:

  • Lead all aspects of employee relations and labor relations, to include conducting fair and consistent investigations; providing guidance and recommendations for resolving employee and manager issues; training and advising managers and supervisors; and managing the administration of LDF’s collective bargaining agreement.
  • Manage high priority, complex, multi-stakeholder initiatives such as an HRIS implementation or new compensation plan rollout, as examples.
  • Create communication plans for the rollout of department projects.
  • Bring best practice knowledge to key department initiatives such as performance management or workforce planning, as examples.
  • Guide HR managers in developing and testing workflows for more efficient procedures.
  • Assist the recruiting function as necessary with high level positions and developing sourcing strategies for hard to fill positions.

This is a high-visibility role that will work with employees and leaders across the organization in many other departments. The Deputy Director will have a keen appreciation for organizational culture and will foster positive employee dynamics throughout her/his work.
The Deputy Director will be the chief HR liaison to the General Counsel’s office and work closely with pro bono outside counsel in all matters pertaining to employment law.


  • Master’s degree required;
  • Minimum ten years’ HR experience, including at least five years leading a functional areaor serving as department deputy;
  • Experience working at a law firm, legal services organization, and/or a non-profitstrongly preferred;
  • Commitment to the racial justice mission of LDF;
  • A strategic thinker with demonstrated experience in generating results;
  • A transformative change-maker not hesitant to roll up their sleeves and tackle toughchallenges;
  • An excellent communicator who creates optimal comprehension with various audiences;
  • A relationship-builder with strong influencing skills and the ability to gain credibility with a wide range of colleagues at all levels;
  • Knowledgeable about employment law and compliance requirements in LDF jurisdictions;
  • Willing and able to travel regularly for work including to LDF offices. 

This is not an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, skills, efforts or requirements or working conditions associated with the job. While this is intended to be an accurate reflection of the current job, management reserves the right to revise the job or to require that other or different tasks be performed as assigned. This description does not constitute a contract of employment and LDF may exercise its employment-at-will rights at any time.

LDF offers a rich platform of benefits including medical (Empire), dental (Cigna), vision (NVA), flexible spending accounts (Flex Facts), transit/commuter plan, life insurance, AD&D, voluntary life & AD&D (UNUM), AFLAC, Employee Assistance Plan, and Health Advocate. As well as the many healthcare benefits, LDF offers a 403b plan with employer match, and a robust vacation, sick, and personal time program to ensure employees have a health work-life balance.

Please note that LDF requires all employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. Accordingly, successful candidates must be fully vaccinated and submit proof of vaccination prior to the commencement of employment unless they qualify for a reasonable accommodation for bona fide medical or religious reasons.

* * * * *

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. We are committed to providing equal employment opportunities to you without regard to race, creed, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, pregnancy, marital status, age, veteran status, medical condition or disability, genetic information, gender identity, or any other protected status under federal, state, or local law.