Investigator (Fresno)

Article Media

Location: Fresno

Date Posted: December 30th, 2019

The Opportunity

The Investigator is a member of the Legal-Policy’s team efforts to provide critical investigative capacity and assistance to the ACLU-NC’s litigation and policy practice areas. In this role, the investigator will work as part of litigation and policy teams and be responsible for (1) identifying and interviewing affected people, witnesses, and community members in connection with litigation and policy campaigns, (2) conducting factual investigations, including thorough gathering and analysis of documents, (3) following up on requests to the ACLU-NC for legal assistance, (4) supporting litigation through declaration drafting, witness preparation, and document management, (5) supporting advocacy campaigns by helping tell the human story behind policy issues,  (6) coordinating all related logistics, and (7) conducting various administrative tasks related to litigation and policy campaigns.

The Approach

You are a self-starter who thrives in a busy, bustling environment with the ability to easily balance multiple projects coming at you at once while staying focused on the details that matter. You work well under pressure and are professional at all times with strong oral and written communication skills. You treat every person with whom you work with dignity and respect and actively work to foster an equitable and inclusive experience for staff and other partners in your work.

The Position

The Legal-Policy Investigator is responsible for providing critical investigative assistance to the ACLU-NC’s litigation and policy practice areas, investigating matters and gathering evidence to support current or potential litigation, identifying and interacting with impacted communities in relation to legal advocacy and litigation matters; and supporting department/organizational policies and goals.

About the Organization

The ACLU-NC is an affiliate of a nationwide, non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to the defense and expansion of civil liberties and civil rights. For most of the last century, it has been at the heart of many of the most major – and sometimes controversial – struggles for civil liberties and civil rights in our state. Our mission is to ensure that Constitutional rights don’t just exist on paper, but are protected in practice. As we move into a new era and face dangerous policies that threaten our civil rights and civil liberties, we remain dedicated to confronting these issues and defending the progress we have made. We must use our decades of experience in impact litigation, legislative advocacy, and fearless organizing to fight these un-American policies and protect our most cherished rights and freedoms. Investigators are critical members of the Legal-Policy Department and the ACLU of California, a statewide collaboration of the ACLU affiliates in California aimed at maximizing our impact and enhancing the protection of civil liberties and civil rights statewide. Join us. 

Duties and Responsibilities  

Investigative Assistance

  • Conduct factual investigations to inform and develop potential litigation or advance active litigation, including identifying and gathering documents, thoroughly reviewing documents, and preparing detailed summaries and analyses of documents and other evidence;
  • Identify and interview affected people, witnesses, and community members in connection with litigation and policy campaigns;
  • Conduct fact-finding interviews with clients, potential clients and witnesses to assist attorneys;
  • Draft detailed summaries of interviews; maintain interview records and support case team’s general document management; 
  • Draft affidavits and declarations based on interviews and support preparation of clients and witness for public education, media, formal depositions, and other related activities;
  • Provide non-legal research assistance for attorneys in support of active or potential litigation and draft memoranda containing findings;
  • Draft record requests (under supervision of an attorney) and review documents received in support of active or potential litigation;
  • Conduct various administrative tasks related to litigation and policy campaigns;
  • Follow up and investigate intake requests received by the ACLU-NC for legal assistance; and
  • Travel regularly across Northern California as needed for the activities above.

Supporting Legal Policy Advocacy and Community Outreach

  • Support advocacy campaigns by helping tell the human story behind policy issues;
  • Develop and maintain relationships with existing and potential clients and witnesses, coalitions, grassroots groups, and advocacy organizations in relation to potential or active legal cases; and,
  • Participate in community outreach, policy advocacy, legislative advocacy, and community meetings in targeted areas, as needed.


Education / Experience:

  • At least 2 years’ experience working in a law firm, legal non-profit or legal services organization, or, as an investigator or journalist, or in the non-profit sector or related field.

Required Skills / Competencies:

  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate and relate to persons from a diversity of backgrounds;
  • Strong witness interview skills;
  • Strong research skills;
  • Strong written and oral communication skills;
  • Strong commitment to public interest advocacy and civil liberties;
  • Close attention to detail;
  • Ability to manage time and tasks independently and under pressure;
  • Ability to manage multiple cases and meet deadlines; and
  • Willingness to travel and work long hours, including nights and weekends, on occasion.

Preferred Skills / Competencies:

  • Experience with client-centric work;
  • Experience and interest in the legal, policy, or advocacy field, especially civil liberties, civil rights or other public interest advocacy work in one (or more) of the following areas: Immigrants’ Rights, Criminal Justice, Economic Justice, Education Equity, Racial Justice, Tech and Civil Liberties, and/or Voting Rights;
  • Experience in gathering public records, reviewing public databases or Westlaw;
  • Comfortable conducting interviews on your own in jails, prisons, and other carceral settings; and
  • Proficiency in Spanish or in other foreign languages spoken in California.

Technical Skills:

  • Proficiency with Microsoft Word, Outlook, Adobe Acrobat, PowerPoint and other Office programs 


Competitive salary is commensurate with experience. Excellent benefits include four weeks paid vacation in addition to 14 office holidays; medical, vision and dental insurance for staff members, their dependents and spouse or domestic partner; life and long-term disability insurance; and, 401(k) plan with employer match. Starting hourly rate is: $35.64 to $41.58.

To Apply

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.  Applications must include (1) a cover letter explaining why you are interested in this position and the ways in which you satisfy the qualifications specified above, (2) resume, and (3) a list of three references. Applicants concurrently applying to any other position with the ACLU should state what other position they are applying for in the cover letter.

Please submit your application in PDF format to the attention of Investigator Search:

 The ACLU-NC is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual with a disability and need assistance applying online, please e-mail  If you are selected for an interview, you will receive additional information regarding how to request an accommodation for the interview process.

The ACLU of Northern California advances equity and inclusion in the workplace by providing equal employment opportunity to support a work environment free from discrimination on the basis of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, age (over 40), sexual orientation, military and veteran status, arrest or conviction record, and any other basis prohibited by law. The organization also provides reasonable accommodations for qualified applicants and employees with disabilities. This equal employment opportunity policy applies to all aspects of employment, including recruitment, selection, advancement, training, problem resolution, and separation from employment. Through this policy, the ACLU-NC strives to establish and maintain an equitable and accessible work environment that is supportive and free from discrimination.

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