Deputy Assistant Director and Specialist (American Law Division)

Congressional Research Service Washington, DC

About the Job

Open: 2/26/2018-3/26/2018

Salary: $126,148 to $189,600 per year


The Congressional Research Service (CRS) works exclusively for the United States Congress, providing objective, nonpartisan research and analysis to committees and Members of the House and Senate. The CRS American Law Division (ALD) seeks a senior manager to serve as Deputy Assistant Director and Specialist. The selectee will support the Assistant Director in managing ALD, which addresses all legal questions that arise in a legislative context or are otherwise of interest to Congress. Some issues relate to the institutional prerogatives of Congress under the Constitution. Other questions involve constitutional and legal principles of statutory analysis that cross legislative policy areas, such as federalism, commerce powers and individual rights. ALD also focuses on the intricacies of legal precedent and statutory construction as they relate to business, crime, the environment, civil rights, international law and other issues. CRS reports and memoranda, while not legally binding, are used by Members and committees of Congress in their legislative deliberations and decision making.

This is a senior leadership position. Applications received for this position will not be considered for any other CRS vacancies. To be considered you must meet the critical competency requirements of the job at the levels described below.

    1. Ability to apply knowledge of American law to address legal questions in a public policy setting: I am recognized by decision makers as a professional resource in specific areas of American law at the federal level.
    2. Ability to manage legal analysis in a public policy setting: I have routinely managed legal research and analysis in specific areas of American law at the federal level.
    3. Ability to lead people and manage a workforce: I have led, supervised, and managed a professional research workforce.
    4. Ability to review the written products of others: I have evaluated and critically reviewed diverse written research products on legal aspects of public policy issues for compliance with established substantive and qualitative standards and made independent judgments on acceptability of material.


CRS is fully committed to workforce diversity. Interested applicants must apply online  


Conditions of Employment

  • See requirements listed below under Qualifications Required.

Your resume is important to this application process. It will be reviewed to determine whether you possess the qualifications referenced above. All applicants are required to submit a resume that provides specific information (to include accomplishments, work experience and education/training) that clearly describes what you would bring to the position.

The Supervisor leads his/her staff toward meeting the Library’s vision, mission, and goals by acting decisively, leveraging diversity and inclusiveness, demonstrating flexibility and resilience, fostering continuous improvement and innovation, and fostering integrity and honesty. To view the Library’s Supervisory Core Competencies click the following link:


BASIC REQUIREMENT: Applicant must be a graduate from a full course of study in a school of law accredited by the American Bar Association and be an active member in good standing of the bar of a state, the District of Columbia, a territory of the United States, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

In addition, the competencies below are required for this position. Those marked with a double asterisk (**) are considered the most critical competencies for this position.

Ability to apply knowledge of American law to address legal questions in a public policy setting.** The ability to apply knowledge of the theories, relevant laws and regulations, concepts, processes, techniques, principles, and/or practices of American law to address legal questions in a public policy setting and in the context of federal law and legislation. This includes knowledge of the history, trends, interrelationships, and current status of the fields of American law and interrelationships with other key fields and disciplines.

Ability to manage legal analysis in a public policy setting.** The ability to manage, organize, and evaluate the legal analysis of public policy issues at the federal level. This includes ensuring that the legal components of public policy problems are appropriately conceptualized and defined; information and research are fully analyzed and synthesized; the implications of statutory and case law are identified and appropriate conclusions are drawn; alternatives are generated and assessed; the consequences of choosing each alternative are evaluated; and established requirements are applied (e.g., objectivity and authoritativeness) in the development, evaluation, and maintenance of products and services. This also includes understanding the big picture, the inter-relationships of all aspects of law and the public policy issue, and the appropriate array and design of products and services to meet client needs.

Ability to lead people and manage a workforce.** The ability to conduct workforce planning activities by identifying staffing needs and recruiting, hiring, training, supervising, and mentoring highly qualified, diverse staff to meet those needs. This includes setting realistic but challenging goals and standards and providing regular, constructive feedback towards goal attainment. This also includes the ability and willingness to ensure that tasks are appropriately delegated and satisfactorily completed by monitoring and evaluating performance against a predetermined deadline and/or measure of quality.

Ability to review the written products of others.** The ability to evaluate the written products of others to meet the substantive and qualitative standards of a public policy organization. This includes making suggestions to improve these written products.

Ability to exercise judgment and discretion. The ability to demonstrate awareness of the likely consequences or implications of one’s own actions and work within the context of agency/organizational/departmental standards. This includes behaving appropriately in a given situation (e.g., with colleagues, clients, media/press), using discretion, and honoring confidentiality.

Ability to think and act strategically. The ability to establish a strategic direction for an organization or group. This includes identifying strategic opportunities and developing strategic and annual plans and performance targets to take advantage of those opportunities. This also includes evaluating organizational progress and performance and making appropriate adjustments.

Ability to collaborate. The ability to work well and cooperate with others and promote collaborative efforts. This includes seeking input from colleagues with diverse expertise, skills, and abilities and using that input to inform and enhance one’s own work as well as the work of the Agency. This also includes showing respect for and relating well to people from varied and diverse backgrounds.

Ability to define and solve problems and make decisions. The ability to identify the problem or issue, and to gather, examine, and interpret information to generate effective solutions to problems and make sound decisions. This includes the ability to seek, logically examine, analyze, interpret, and synthesize information from different sources; and generate and evaluate reasonable alternative solutions and their implications.

Ability to communicate effectively other than in writing. Ability to effectively express ideas and recommendations other than in writing in various settings to peers, staff, managers, supervisors, and external audiences to both provide and seek information. This includes actively listening to or understanding communicated information and answering questions thoughtfully and completely.