Local recruitment: Senior Water Attorney

Western Resource Advocates

United States 🇺🇸


WRA is seeking a strategic relationship builder to join our team as a part-time Senior Water Attorney!


Western Resource Advocates (WRA) is seeking a strategic relationship builder to join our team as a part-time Senior Water Attorney. The Senior Water Attorney will work to develop and advance equitable policies that improve regional and inter-state water governance and management in ways that benefit rivers and the communities, recreation, and the environment they support. The position will focus on the Colorado River Basin but may work on other western rivers as well. This position requires strengths in research, analysis, and writing, as well as familiarity with a wide range of western water and river decision-makers and stakeholders. Reporting to WRA’s Senior Regional Water Policy Analyst, the Senior Water Attorney collaborates with Healthy Rivers program staff, conservation community partners, water providers, state agency staff, and other key water decision-makers to advance the next generation of water management strategies. This is a part-time position as the Senior Water Attorney will work 20-24 hours a week.


WRA fights climate change and its impacts to sustain the environment, economy, and people of the West. We respect the different needs of diverse people and partner with them to develop a shared vision for progress—one that advances communities while protecting biodiversity.

Our team of policy experts, scientists, economists, and attorneys has a 30-year history of working where decisions are made, sweating the details, creating evidence-based solutions, and holding decisionmakers accountable. This on the ground work with policymakers and other advocates advances clean energy, protects air, land, water, and wildlife—and sustains the lives and livelihoods of the West.


This position has the option to work remotely anywhere within Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, or Utah, or from one of WRA’s six offices; or a hybrid of the two with easy access to a major airport as travel is required. WRA has offices located in Boulder, CO; Carson City, NV; Denver, CO; Phoenix, AZ; Salt Lake City, UT; and Santa Fe, NM. Some occasional travel within WRA’s region will be required for collaboration with WRA staff and stakeholders.


  • Develop, maintain and strengthen relationships with state, regional, and federal river policy makers and other river stakeholders.
  • Develop, maintain, and strengthen relationships with other NGOs working on water and river policy in the region.
  • Effectively communicate the objectives of WRA’s regional river work and objectives to decision-makers, partners and funders.
  • Lead legal research and other analysis of water policies, programs, and resources that advance sustainable and equitable water management practices.
  • Ensure the Healthy Rivers Program’s policy work is consistent with WRA’s DEI goals.
  • Oversee the compilation of legal research and analysis into clear and concise reports.
  • Independently present research and findings to water providers, decision-makers, governmental organizations, and at conferences.
  • Advocate with state, regional, and federal officials on innovative water management practices.
  • Identify opportunities to work with WRA’s Communications and Government Affairs staff and consultants to develop communication and advocacy strategies to advance WRA’s objectives.
  • Keep abreast of emerging water topics to lead legal and policy development, with an eye for equitable and inclusive policies and mechanisms.
  • Advise the Healthy Rivers Program on strategy and the development of equitable policies.
  • Develop strategies for campaign plans to influence the region’s water policy transformation.
  •  Occasional to frequent travel to meetings and events, generally within the Interior West.


  • A minimum of eight years of experience in the field of  western water law, supply and demand issues, and inter-state river governance and management issues; with a demonstrated interest in equitable policy outcomes.
  • A solid existing network of relationships with state and federal water decision-makers and a demonstrated ability to successfully engage with and persuade decision-makers to drive water and river advocacy objectives.
  • Demonstrated ability to build and work with conservation coalition partners to achieve environmental and conservation objectives.
  • Knowledge of the politics and policy landscape in WRA’s region.
  • Excellent legal research and analytical skills.
  • Skill with independently managing multiple projects with varying timelines.
  • Experience designing and/or implementing a strategic plan.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills; ability to communicate effectively to a variety of audiences and influence others.
  • Self-motivated, works well independently and enjoys collaborating with a team.
  • Strong organizational skills, with attention to detail and follow‐through.
  • Creativity, curiosity, patience, and a sense of humor.
  • A senior attorney will typically have at least 10 years of relevant experience; which may include post-graduate academic experience.
  • Ability to travel.


Prolonged periods of sitting at a desk and working on a computer. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Travel required, primarily to other states within WRA’s region.


The salary range for this part-time position is $37,500-$69,000 annually; salary depends on relevant experience and new staff rarely start at the top of the range. This part-time, non-exempt position, includes limited benefits. This position will work 20-24 hours a week. Limited benefits include: prorated vacation leave, prorated sick leave, prorated paid holidays, and prorated paid sabbatical leave after 5 years; option to enroll in WRA’s 401(k) retirement plan; disability and life insurance coverage; and if based in the Denver/Boulder metro area, employee will also receive an RTD EcoPass. Position is part-time non-exempt.


Diversity and inclusion are a critical component of our business strategy, mission and vision. We welcome candidates from an array of backgrounds and experiences to join our team. Learn more about our commitment here: https://westernresourceadvocates.org/#commitment-to-diversity

Western Resource Advocates is an equal opportunity employer (EOE) and does not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religion,  gender, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, marital status, amnesty, or veteran status.


Thank you for your interest in the Senior Water Attorney position with Western Resource Advocates. Complete the two forms below to apply for the position. You will need to upload the following in PDF format:

  • Cover letter describing your relevant qualifications and the reason for your interest in WRA and this position;
  • Resume; and
  • Writing Sample (up to five pages).




IHE Delft MSc in Water and Sustainable Development