Director, Immigration

New York, United States
Apply by 11 February 2018
Senior-level , Full-time staff position
Posted on 13 January 2018

Job Description

Job Title: Director, Immigration
Sector: Immigration & Citizenship
Employment Category: Regular
Location: USA-New York, NY - USP

Job Description

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) helps people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover, and gain control of their future. Founded in 1933, the IRC is at work today in over 40 countries and 28 U.S. cities. The IRC’s US Programs (USP) department creates opportunities for refugees and other vulnerable migrants to survive and thrive in America. USP serves more than 40,000 individuals each year, including thousands of newly arrived refugees, through a diverse portfolio of programs aimed at five core outcomes: Health, Safety, Economic Wellbeing, Education and Power. To facilitate integration into their new communities, IRC assists refugee, asylee and immigrant clients with immigration legal services, civics education and related services across the domestic network. IRC’s immigration services are administered locally by Department of Justice (DoJ)-accredited immigration specialists who receive support, guidance and technical oversight from IRC’s national immigration technical unit. IRC’s immigration program assists over 15,000 individuals each year in obtaining immigration benefits.

The Director, Immigration oversees the support, guidance and technical oversight provided to IRC’s immigration staff across the USP network in 15 states and manages the immigration technical unit staff based in New York. The Director sets the vision, articulates the mission, and engages in program design and implementation to ensure effective and responsive delivery of immigration legal services and civics programming - specifically, adjustment of status application; naturalization applications and family reunification applications/petitions, deferred action for children and parents, among others; implementing new immigration legal services as determined by changes in the law; and providing critical input on IRC’s advocacy agenda on immigration issues and policy. The Director is responsible for leadership and implementation of a large, multiyear project aimed at increasing IRC’s impact on naturalization of eligible clients efficiently and sustainably, as well as developing new service initiatives.


I. General Management - Leadership/Stewardship

Organizational Leadership - develop and implement agency-wide policy, protocols, and practices on immigration law, practices, and procedures for the immigration network that are consistent with existing IRC policies and procedures; engage actively with immigration network staff, Executive Directors, Regional Directors, and US Programs senior management to facilitate and resolve immigration program issues and strengthen IRC’s immigration work; communicate regularly with Sr. Director, Program Quality & Innovation, and report regularly to US Programs Senior Management on operational, programmatic, and statistical issues such as personnel, monthly immigration statistical field and HQ reports, law enforcement issues, legal matters, etc.

Staff Management - supervise USP immigration technical unit staff and recruit, oversee, evaluate and develop staff, volunteers and interns; support oversight of immigration field staff in coordination with Executive Directors in each site, and assist with recruitment and evaluation of key program staff in the field offices.

Program Management - Set strategy for overall program development and quality assurance; provide day-to-day and ongoing oversight to programs, including service delivery, quality control, new initiatives, and ensuring appropriate outcomes (both qualitatively and quantitatively), through legal, technical, and administrative support. Ensure unit conducts quality assurance site visits to review and evaluate immigration legal services and BIA accredited representatives in local offices.

Program Development & Evaluation: Develop and coordinate the delivery of new immigration legal services depending on changes in immigration law. Develop and implement alternative methods of service delivery (i.e., incorporating technology to deliver remote services, online application assistance, workshops/clinics for naturalization applications and other types of applications). Work with external evaluators to assess the effectiveness of programming and make changes accordingly. Work with new IRC local offices to commence provision of immigration legal services.

Department of Justice Recognition and Accreditation Program - Ensure IRC attains and maintains recognition and accreditation for all appropriate sites and staff. Supervise IRC in-house mentoring program for individuals seeking DoJ accreditation or for improved performance; supervise the submission of recognition applications for new offices seeking to provide immigration legal services; work collaboratively with the DoJ for the approval of these applications and seek to expand IRC DOJ Recognition and Accreditation.

Training - Promote innovative learning environment through knowledge management mechanisms that facilitate systematic exchange of information, good practices, and lessons learned, including intranets, communities of practice, national conferences, webinars, etc. Work with other partner in the delivery of immigration legal trainings as needed.

II. External Relations

Representation and Advocacy - Serve as a focal point on immigration matters within USP and collaborate with government agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security (USCIS, ICE, and CBP), Department of State, Department of Justice, etc. as needed to resolve issues and problems. Coordinate immigration advocacy initiatives with Policy & Practice advocacy team to develop IRC response in partnership with other national organizations on immigration advocacy topics and joint program initiatives

Business Development and Donor Relations: Advise efforts to attract funding and develop business for USP’s Immigration program; contribute to or lead the development of concept notes and proposals for the provision of direct technical support projects. Provide technical review of grant proposals prepared by field offices. Build partnerships and cultivate donor relationships that attract funding and other resources to Immigration

Representation: Represent Immigration across the organization, serving as a resource to IRC staff seeking information about program activities, including external relations and advocacy departments; Respond to field queries regarding program activities

Communications & Marketing: Develop and implement media strategy for publicizing naturalization and immigration work; Work with IRC Communications team to publicize immigration work.

II. Financial Management

Budget Oversight - Maintain oversight and input into annual budgets for Immigration technical unit; ensure monthly review of budget-to-actuals to monitor burn rates and to support the sustainability and expansion of immigration legal services. Provide oversight and administration of budgets as it relates to the national grants and funding.

Proposal budget development - Oversee development of budgets to support proposals to fund the Immigration technical unit

Fees - Work with office and immigration staff to review and revise as needed the immigration service fees as a key component to sustainability of each office’s immigration program

Key Working Relationships:

Position Reports to: Senior Director, Program Quality & Innovation

Position directly supervises: Immigration Technical Advisor, Immigration Program Manager

Other Internal and/or external contacts:
The Director, Immigration works and coordinates closely with the USP Executive Directors and the immigration program staff in the field offices, and participates actively as a member of the USP Senior Management Team. Coordinates closely IRC departments, including Policy & Practice and Global Partnerships & Philanthropy.

* Juris Doctorate and Bar Admission required.
* Minimum 6-8 years’work experience in Immigration legal services
* Minimum 3 years program management experience, including staff supervision and budget oversight
* Extensive knowledge of immigration law, applications and petitions in relevant areas such as family-based reunification, naturalization, and refugee adjustment, and domestic and overseas refugee processing required. Familiarity with U.S. Refugee Admissions Program desirable.
* Prior experience and/or collaboration with DHS, DoS and UNHCR preferred.
* Strong analytical, training, organizational, oral, and written communication skills.
* Ability to communicate effectively with colleagues and partners in a cross-cultural, multi-disciplinary environment; excellent interpersonal, diplomatic and networking skills, ability to manage a variety of internal and external relationships, to multi-task and prioritize tasks
* Proven leadership and management skills to lead staff and promote productivity, and ability to be flexible and to work well under pressure in a fast-paced environment
* Spanish language skills a plus
* Some travel required

About the Organization

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, the IRC offers lifesaving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster. At work today in over 40 countries and 27 U.S. cities, we restore safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted and struggling to endure.

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