Position Information

Position Information Message
Attorney in Charge - YAD Salem

The Youth Advocacy Division of the Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS), the Massachusetts public defender agency, is seeking to fill the Attorney-in-Charge position in its Salem Office.


We fight for equal justice and human dignity by supporting our clients in achieving their legal and life goals. We zealously advocate for the rights of individuals and promote just public policy to protect the rights of all.


Our Values

Courage   •   Accountability   •   Respect   •   Excellence



CPCS is committed to protecting the fundamental constitutional and human rights of our assigned clients through zealous advocacy, community-oriented defense, and the fullness of excellent legal representation.  We are dedicated to building and maintaining strong professional relationships, while striving to accept, listen to and respect the diverse circumstances of each client, as we dedicate ourselves to meeting their individual needs.  It is our CPCS mission to achieve these goals, and in furtherance thereof, we embrace and endorse diversity, equity, and inclusion as our core values as we maintain a steadfast commitment to: (1) Ensure that CPCS management and staff members represent a broad range of human differences and experience; (2) Provide a work climate that is respectful and supports success; and (3) Promote the dignity and well-being of all staff members. CPCS leadership is responsible for ensuring equity, diversity, and inclusion. The ability to achieve these goals with any level of certainty is ultimately the responsibility each member of the CPCS community.


CPCS is the state agency in Massachusetts responsible for providing an attorney when the state or federal constitution or a state statute requires the appointment of an attorney for a person who cannot afford to retain one.  The agency provides representation in criminal, delinquency, youthful offender, child welfare, guardianship, mental health, sexually dangerous person, parole and sex offender registry cases, as well as in appeals and post-conviction and post-judgment proceedings related to those matters.


The Youth Advocacy Division (YAD), the juvenile defender division of CPCS, is committed to ensuring that every indigent child in Massachusetts has access to zealous legal representation in delinquency, GCL Revocation, juvenile murder, juvenile appeals, and youthful offender cases from a diverse and ever improving community of juvenile defenders consisting of both private assigned counsel and staff public defenders. YAD provides leadership, training, support, and oversight to the indigent juvenile defense bar in Massachusetts.  Youth in Massachusetts have a right to all of the due process provided to adults, including jury trials and, sadly, are also subject to adult sentences starting at age 14.  Lawyers representing juveniles need all of the knowledge and skills as attorneys for adults and also must master the additional juvenile law, the science of adolescent development, the workings of DCF and DYS, and education law. 

The clients we represent are diverse across every context imaginable and bring many unique cultural dimensions to the matters we address. This reality creates a critical need for CPCS staff to be culturally competent and able to work well with people of different races, ethnicities, genders and/or sexual orientation identities, abilities, and limited English proficiency, among other protected characteristics.


The Youth Advocacy Division is hiring for an Attorney in Charge position of its Salem Office. Salem is a historic coastal city in Essex County, located in the North Shore region. Continuous settlement by Europeans began in 1626 with English colonists with Salem becoming one of the most significant seaports in early American history. Today Salem is a residential and tourist area with much of the city's cultural identity reflecting its role as the location of the infamous Salem Witch Trials of 1692. The city's population was 44,480 at the 2020 census. There is an MBTA Commuter Rail and several MBTA buses that serve the city.   


The Attorney in Charge (AIC) oversees a trial office which integrates the work of two attorneys, a social service advocate, and an administrative assistant to fully address the legal and developmental needs of our clients.  The AIC plays a significant leadership role by managing the local office, helping with the management of YAD as a whole, representing individual clients, and working closely with the private bar to build a strong community of juvenile defenders actively addressing practice and training issues. 

The AIC provides leadership, support, and oversight to the members of a multi-disciplinary community oriented public defender office.  The AIC also plays a leadership role in YAD efforts to support indigent representation in delinquency and youthful offender cases statewide.  The AIC collaborates extensively with private assigned counsel. 

The AIC will report directly to the Assistant Director of YAD.  The AIC will be expected to participate in regular meetings with other YAD AICs, the local Juvenile Supervising Attorneys, as well as the YAD management team.

Position: Attorney in Charge - YAD Salem
Organization: Committee for Public Counsel Services - CPCS
Location: Boston/ Roxbury,  MA 
United States
Salary: $105,623 - $133,827, commensurate with experience.
Posting Start Date: 1/1/2023
Date Posted: 11/29/2022



The responsibilities of the Attorney in Charge include, but are not limited to:

  • Managing and supervising a juvenile public defender office by overseeing legal representation to the office’s clients utilizing the YAD model of a positive youth development approach (PYD) to inter-disciplinary representation in delinquency, youthful offender, and related proceedings;
  • Maintaining a reduced caseload of delinquency, youthful offender, and related proceedings and taking the lead on difficult and potentially precedent-setting cases;
  • Ensuring that all cases are assigned promptly and opened and closed in a timely fashion;
  • Ensuring that annual performance evaluations are completed for all staff in a timely and comprehensive manner;
  • Embracing the Positive Youth Development Approach to Zealous Advocacy, including the use of education advocacy and the use of both staff and private social workers;
  • Fully embraces the CPCS case management system, including the ability to generate and interpret case statistics and reports, to ensure the collection of data for performance management, program evaluation, and policy advocacy;
  • Participating, supporting, and providing leadership to the local juvenile defender communities and stakeholders and encouraging staff to engage meaningfully in client communities;
  • Providing on-going in-house training for staff and working closely with the YAD Training Director to help develop and deliver private counsel trainings;
  • Building and maintaining strong working relationships with the local Juvenile Court, Probation, DYS, DCF, community agencies and other stakeholders in the Juvenile Justice System, including representing YAD in select circumstances; and,
  • Other duties as assigned.



The following attributes are required for the position of Attorney-in-Charge:

  • Eligible to practice law in this jurisdiction as a member of the Massachusetts bar in good standing, or as an attorney in another jurisdiction who is eligible to engage in limited Massachusetts practice under Supreme Judicial Court Rule 3:04;
  • A minimum of seven years of experience handling criminal defense cases;
  • Access to an automobile in order to travel to courts, clients, and investigation locations that are not easily accessible by public transportation; and,
  • Access to a personal computer with home internet access sufficient to work remotely.



The following skills are preferable in a candidate:

  • Strong experience with juvenile defense, particularly with a community-oriented defender practice;
  • Experience supervising, managing, and training attorneys and other staff;
  • A demonstrated commitment and understanding of juvenile justice practice and policy;
  • A demonstrated commitment to the principle of zealous advocacy in the representation of indigent persons in criminal cases;
  • Ability and commitment to complete annual performance evaluations in a timely and comprehensive manner;
  • Demonstrated writing and public speaking skills;
  • Strong organizational and administrative ability;
  • Substantial knowledge of state and local resources of use to juvenile defendants;
  • Ability to provide in-house training and disseminate information about case law and other relevant legal developments;
  • Substantial experience in the use of forensic experts.

EEO Statement


The Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS) is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ethnicity, sex, disability, religion, age, veteran or military status, genetic information, gender identity, or sexual orientation as required by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and other applicable federal and state statutes and organizational policies.  Applicants who have questions about equal employment opportunity or who need reasonable accommodations can contact the Director of Human Resources Management, Ted Waterman at ewaterman@publiccounsel.net

Status: This listing expires on: 2/27/2023
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Organization Information
Committee for Public Counsel Services - CPCS
75 Federal Street, 5th Floor

Boston/ Roxbury,  MA 02110
United States
(617) 910-5797
Kuda Chidzonga