Employment and Internship Opportunities

Case Strategy Director

Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel
Job Location: Denver, Colorado
Salary Range: $7,105 – $9,519 per month
Release Date: March 12, 2019
Apply By: March 31, 2019, 5:00pm
Employment Type: Full Time

The Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel (ORPC) is an independent agency within the State of Colorado Judicial Branch that is vested with the oversight and administration of legal representation for indigent parents in child welfare cases across Colorado.

Respondent Parents’ Counsel (RPC) play a critical role in achieving the best outcomes for children in child welfare cases by protecting the legal and due process rights of parents, presenting balanced information to courts, and promoting the preservation of family relationships. To learn more, visit https://www.coloradoorpc.org/.

ORPC Attorneys are required to work as a team to develop systemic policy initiatives and innovative approaches to the representation of respondent parents at both the trial and appellate levels of dependency cases. Attorneys perform a variety of duties including recruitment, hiring, and evaluation of respondent parent attorneys; litigation support and case consultation; development of attorney practice standards; coordination and execution of attorney trainings and resources; and a variety of administrative support functions for the ORPC.

The Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel invites qualified applicants to apply for the position of Staff Attorney – Case Strategy Director. The staff attorney:

  • Works with the Deputy and Executive Director to maintain a list of qualified trial counsel available for
    appointment in dependency cases.
  • Develops and manages the ORPC Case Strategy Program, including serving as the lead staff attorney in providing litigation support to contract attorneys and in responding to litigation questions and requests for information.
  • Develops and formalizes practice guidelines specific to trial and appellate representation for parents in dependency cases. Works collaboratively with the Executive Director, Deputy Director, ORPC staff attorneys, and RPC trial and appellate attorneys to develop and vet practice guidelines.
  • Works collaboratively to develop and advance systemic trial advocacy issues.
  • Manages the ORPC law clerk intern program and works collaboratively with law school clinic programs.
  • Monitors changes in case law, rules, regulations, and policies impacting respondent parent
  • Recruits Experts and works to develop an expert database.
  • Collaborates with the Training Director and Appellate Director to train lawyers statewide on litigation and advocacy strategy.
  • Attends committee meetings and collaborates with other child welfare stakeholders on matters impacting the ORPC’s broader policy goals.
  • Uses his or her judgment and analytical problem-solving and communications skills to identify potential solutions to legal and other problems.
  • Helps the ORPC conduct an annual attorney application review and evaluation of ORPC contractors.
  • Supports the other ORPC staff with projects and tasks.
  • Occasional travel across the state of Colorado and some out of state travel may be required.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Preference will be given to applicants with both private practice and government agency experience. The following are additional important qualifications: passion for dependency law and case strategy, significant respondent parents’ representation training and knowledge, ability to plan and execute training, and experience coaching and mentoring other attorneys. This position reports directly to the ORPC Deputy Director.

This job requires that the applicant be an attorney who is licensed to practice law in Colorado or who can be licensed within six months. Must have experience in family defense, child welfare law, or a related defense field. Preference will be given to applicants who have a working knowledge of the Colorado Children’s Code and Juvenile Rules of Procedure. Must have excellent written and verbal communication skills.

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each of the above essential functions satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the physical and environmental conditions required of the employee on the job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Physical Demands:
While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear. The employee frequently is required to sit and reach with hands and arms and perform repetitive motions with wrists, hands, and fingers. The employee is occasionally required to be mobile. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, and ability to adjust focus.

Work Environment:
This position is subject to many interruptions and may require handling multiple calls, inquiries, and job priorities at once. The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.


NOTICE! Each person employed must present identity and employment eligibility verification.

NOTICE! Employees hired after March 1, 1988, must be on the payroll direct deposit program.

NOTICE! Disabled applicants: If you have a mental or physical impairment which limits one of your major life activities (e.g. walking, hearing, seeing, speaking, breathing, or learning) and require special accommodations for testing or interviewing, it is your responsibility to notify the office scheduling the interview or test at least 3 working days before the interview or test date. If you need special accommodations at the work site, you must notify the hiring authority.

NOTICE! All prospective employees of the Colorado Judicial Branch are subject to background investigation prior to hiring.

Complete the online application at the link below. Please direct application materials and questions to Melissa Thompson, ORPC Executive Director. Submit a cover letter detailing qualifications and experience for this position, a resume, and a list of three professional references by 5 p.m. on March 31, 2019 by filling out the application at the following link:


You may submit the required information through the online application only. Late or incomplete applications will not be considered. Please note application materials will not be returned. Successful applicants will be contacted to schedule an interview. This position is eligible for benefits, including participation in retirement, health, dental, life/AD&D, and short-term disability plans and paid leave.

Faxed or mailed applications will NOT Be Accepted. Be sure to follow the directions to apply.

Respondent Parent Counsel

Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel 2019 Application Period 

Be part of the next social justice movement!  Family defense attorneys, commonly known as Respondent Parent Counsel or RPC, under the Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel represent indigent parents in court proceedings brought against them by the county child protection services agency.  RPCs work on behalf of adults threatened by state intervention with the temporary and/or permanent loss of the custody and rights to their children.  RPCs are dedicated to protecting the fundamental right to parent by advocating for parents’ due process rights, access to appropriate services, and constitutional right to parent their children.

The Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel (ORPC), a Colorado state agency, will accept applications from attorneys across the state of Colorado to represent indigent parents in dependency and neglect proceedings during our annual application period, March 1-31, 2019. The ORPC’s mission is to protect the fundamental right to parent by providing effective legal advocates for indigent parents in child welfare proceedings. This right is protected when a parent has a dedicated advocate, knowledgeable about child welfare laws and willing to hold the state to its burden.   The ORPC offers comprehensive training and litigation support; mentoring; access to Westlaw, paralegals, investigators and experts; a motions bank, and a listserv.  Start your own law firm and let the ORPC support your practice!   The ORPC pays RPCs $80 per hour on an independent contractor basis.

The application requires the online submission of a resume, writing sample consisting of a substantive motion written in the last three years, references, disciplinary history, and essay questions.

Required Attachments to Prepare

You will be required to upload electronic documents to the online application form.  Required documents for new applicants are listed below.  The ORPC recommends that you upload all documents in PDF format.  You will be required to upload your documents when prompted on the online form—you may not e-mail or mail documents separately.

All new applicants must be prepared to provide:

  • A resume describing your legal experience and any related child welfare experience;
  • A list of two professional references. Please notify your references that the ORPC may be contacting them;
  • A redacted writing sample such as one substantive motion, preferably from a dependency case;
  • A brief or petition if interested in appellate representation.


For any questions regarding RPC practice or working as an independent contractor through the ORPC, please contact Ashlee Arcilla at Aarcilla@coloradoorpc.org.


The ORPC also accepts applications from law student interns, and social work interns.  If you are interested in a law internship, please email Ruchi Kapoor at rkapoor@coloradoorpc.org.  If you are interested in a social work internship, please email Jill Cohen at jcohen@coloradoorpc.org.