May 26, 2020

Associate General Counsel for Law & Policy

  • National Security Agency
  • Fort Meade, MD, USA

Job Description

The National Security Agency (NSA) Office of General Counsel (OGC) is seeking an experienced attorney to serve as the Associate General Counsel for Law & Policy (AGC/LP). The AGC/LP will lead and manage OGC's Law & Policy practice group, report directly to the Principal Deputy General Counsel, and, along with two other Deputy General Counsels, form a "Front Office" team directly advising the General Counsel on virtually all matters arising within OGC. The position offers a highly-motivated attorney the opportunity to work in a dynamic team environment and analyze cutting-edge legal, policy, technical and intelligence issues that impact high-profile current events affecting our national security. The Law & Policy group provides strategic legal advice and policy counsel to Agency leadership and senior managers on a wide spectrum of issues impacting the Agency's signals intelligence and cybersecurity missions. In particular, the Law & Policy practice group is responsible for providing legal counsel in support of the NSA's strategic engagements with external audiences on select issues of critical importance to NSA leadership, such as the Agency's activities under expiring provisions of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Consequently, the AGC/LP frequently engages with the Director and Deputy Director of the NSA. The AGC/LP will have extensive engagements outside of NSA, to include with senior attorneys and leadership at the Department of Justice's National Security Division, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Council, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and the Department of Defense, as well relevant committees of Congress, and other external entities. The Law & Policy group also produces or collaborates on many of OGC's formal written legal products that are intended to support interagency legal discussions. BACKGROUND ON THE OFFICE OF GENERAL COUNSEL: The NSA is the primary entity in the U.S. Government charged with collecting foreign signals intelligence in support of the nation's efforts to counter the increasingly dangerous threats to U.S. security posed by terrorism, cyber actors, weapons of mass destruction, and hostile foreign governments. In addition, NSA is also charged with the protection of U.S. national security systems, including Department of Defense worldwide computer networks and other systems. In conducting these vital missions, NSA relies upon personnel with world-class technical and professional expertise. At NSA OGC, you will analyze cutting-edge technical and intelligence issues and will frequently provide legal advice that relates to high-profile current events affecting our national security. Attorneys working in NSA OGC apply their expertise, skills, and education to solve a variety of challenges not found in the private sector or at any other government agency. You will have the opportunity to make a global impact on a daily basis as you work with other top caliber professionals at the highest levels of the Agency and across the U.S. Government. This critical work ensures that Agency operations comply with the law while also protecting both our national security and our civil liberties. NSA attorneys work in a highly classified setting and are entrusted with tremendous responsibility as they advise the Director and other senior leaders at the Agency on a diverse and complex spectrum of issues related to gathering the foreign intelligence information needed to fight international terrorism, espionage, transnational crime, and narcotics, to defeat foreign cyber adversaries trying to steal national secrets, and to provide intelligence support to critical military overseas tactical operations, all while protecting our civil liberties and ensuring strict compliance with the Constitution and our laws. Because the NSA is a Department of Defense agency, our attorneys have a unique opportunity to be directly involved in national security operations working alongside military and civilian colleagues, as well as to interact with the private sector on cybersecurity and other matters. In short, many OGC attorneys say they can't imagine working in a more exciting and important position. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES: - Draft legal memoranda in support of Agency's critical strategic objectives. - Provide legal and policy advice to the NSA OGC Front Office and Senior NSA leadership on all issues of critical importance to NSA leadership. - Represent NSA during strategic engagements with external audiences, including congress, other federal government agencies, and non-federal entities, among others. - Oversee and manage the Law & Policy practice group. - Oversee legal services performed within the Law & Policy practice group, including determining attorney adherence to appropriate professional standards. - Perform such other duties as the Director, NSA or NSA General Counsel may prescribe.

Leaders at the National Security Agency motivate, support, and cultivate employees at all levels. Leaders at the NSA, where people are a priority, are responsible for leveraging the diversity of their workforce to create innovative solutions that support the Agency's mission.

The applicant must be a fully qualified attorney/graduate of an accredited law school and active member, in good standing, of the bar of the highest Court of a State, US Commonwealth, US Territory, or the District of Columbia. The candidate must be a US citizen and have, or be eligible to obtain, a TS/SCI clearance. Applicants must have demonstrated ability to perform complex legal analysis and give effective oral and written presentations; superior skill in written communication; highly-developed interpersonal skills and ability to forge working relationships with senior-level clients; and proven ability to effectively manage attorneys. The ideal applicant will have broad legal experience and professional knowledge of statutes and regulations governing the Intelligence Community and the Department of Defense. Ideal applicants also will have a strong background in electronic surveillance law; intelligence information sharing initiatives; civil liberties and privacy protections; and international law. A strong background in interagency work - either in the US Intelligence Community or elsewhere in the US Government - is also preferred. Evaluation Criteria: The applicant selected must meet all the Technical Qualifications (TQ) listed below. APPLICANTS MUST PROVIDE A BRIEF NARRATIVE (NO MORE THAN ONE-HALF PAGE) TO SUPPORT EACH TQ. In addition, each applicant must submit a resume. Fully qualified applicants will be reviewed by a Panel. 1) Specific Technical/Professional Achievements While achievement may take the form of participation in group efforts, the contribution of the DISL candidate should be distinguished from the accomplishments of the team as a whole and evaluated in terms of the impact of individual skills and knowledge on the team effort. Things to be taken into consideration include: - Expertise, competency, depth, Problem solving ability - Innovative research - Value of the contributions to the Agency - Acquisition of expertise in other disciplines 2) Technical/Professional Development of Others It is critically important to the Agency's future technical capability that DISLs, particularly at the more senior levels, ensure their skills are transferred to others, especially to the next generation of experts. Covered in this category are not only concrete skills and knowledge, but such intangibles as how to approach problems, how to balance risk against the chance of success, factors in building problem-solving teams, how to communicate effectively, and the like. Things to be taken into consideration include: - Individual mentoring activities, both formal and informal - Participation on boards, committees, panels, etc., of significance to the technical community - Activities aimed at conveying knowledge, such as seminars, teaching at the NCS, informal training on the job - Ability to communicate - Willingness to work with the next generation of experts 3) Technical/Professional Decision Making The absence of solid and effective technical leadership will ultimately adversely affect the Agency mission. It is most important, therefore, that the DISL employee be assessed in part on the extent to which he/she is a technical leader. At the highest levels, this leadership should be unquestioned. In this area also fall such intangible components of leadership as perseverance and dependability. Things to be taken into consideration include: - Standing in the field - Influence on management - Role in decision-making - Directing complex technical efforts - Spearheading critical technical efforts - Ability to influence direction of technical projects - Impact of decisions 4) Continued Technical/Professional Development A DISL must emphasize continuous enhancement of technical/professional skills and knowledge. Formal training, "stretch" assignments, research and writing projects, interaction with other experts, and other activities appropriate to the particular discipline. Things to be taken into consideration include: - Standing in the field (internal, and external if appropriate) - Increasing ability to understand and deal with complexity - Increasing ability to relate narrow technical specialties to the broader needs of the Agency - Efforts aimed at deepening technical expertise 5) Leading the Intelligence Enterprise DISLs should have a broad point of view of the Intelligence mission and an understanding of individual or organizational responsibilities in relation to the larger IC strategic priorities. The perspective is shaped by experience and education and characterized by a strategic top-level focus on broad requirements, joint experiences, fusion of information, collaboration, and vertical and horizontal integration of information. Things to be taken into consideration include: Collaboration and Integration: - Share information and knowledge to achieve results by creating an environment that promotes employee engagement, collaboration, integration, information and knowledge sharing, and the candid, open exchange of diverse points of view. - Demonstrate knowledge, skill, and/or ability to build, leverage, and lead collaborative networks with key peers and stakeholders across the IC and/or in other government/private-sector organization, or professional/technical disciplines to achieve significant joint/multi-agency mission outcomes; - Ability to integrate joint/multi-agency activities effectively exercising collaborative plans that realize mutual IC, joint, or multi-organizational goals. Enterprise Focus: - Demonstrate a deep understanding of how the mission, structures, leaders, and cultures of the various IC components interact and connect. - Encourage and support Joint Duty assignments and development experiences that develop and reinforce an enterprise focus among their subordinates. - Demonstrate knowledge, skill, and/or ability to understand the roles, missions, capabilities, and organizational and political realities of the intelligence enterprise and apply that understanding to drive joint, interagency, or multi-organizational mission accomplishment. Value-Centered Leadership: - Advance and reinforce IC core values: A Commitment to selfless service and excellence in support of the IC's mission, as well as to preserving, protecting, and defending the Nation's laws and liberties; the integrity and Courage (moral, intellectual, and physical) to seek and speak the truth, to innovate, and to change things for the better, regardless of personal or professional risk; and - Collaboration as members of a single IC-wide team, respecting and leveraging the diversity of all members of the IC, their background, their sources and methods, and their points of view. - Demonstrate the ability to reinforce, and reward IC, departmental/component core values. - Demonstrate commitment to diversity of people, points of view, ideas, and insights.

Salary Range: Up to $181,500 Play Plan: Defense Intelligence Senior Level (DISL) Tier 1

To apply for this position, please click the 'Apply' button located at the top right of this posting. After completing the application for the first time, or reviewing previously entered information, and clicking the 'Submit' button, you will receive a confirmation email. Please ensure your spam filters are configured to accept emails from ***PLEASE NOTE: U.S. Citizenship is required for all applicants. Reasonable accommodations provided to applicants with disabilities during the application and hiring process where appropriate. NSA is an equal opportunity employer and abides by applicable employment laws and regulations. All applicants and employees are subject to random drug testing in accordance with Executive Order 12564. Employment is contingent upon successful completion of a security background investigation and polygraph. This position is a Defense Civilian Intelligence Personnel System (DCIPS) position in the Excepted Service under 10 U.S.C. 1601. DoD Components with DCIPS positions apply Veterans' Preference to eligible candidates as defined by Section 2108 of Title 5 USC, in accordance with the procedures provided in DoD Instruction 1400.25, Volume 2005, DCIPS Employment and Placement. If you are a veteran claiming veterans' preference, as defined by Section 2108 of Title 5 U.S.C., you may be asked to submit documents verifying your eligibility. Please note that you may be asked a series of questions depending on the position you apply for. Your responses will be used as part of the screening process of your application and will assist in determining your eligibility for the position. Be sure to elaborate on experiences in your resume. Failure to provide the required information or providing inaccurate information will result in your application not being considered for this position. Only those applicants who meet the qualifications for the position will be contacted to begin employment processing. Please Note: Job Posting could close earlier than the closing date due to sufficient number of applicants or position no longer available. We encourage you to apply as soon as possible.