$106,243 - $172,500 (CL 30)*

$124,971 - $172,500 (CL 31)*

San Francisco, CA, or an alternative duty station within the Ninth Circuit.

About the Office

The Office of the Circuit Executive (OCE) serves the 9th Judicial Circuit of United States. It is the largest federal circuit in the country, comprising nine western states and two territories. The Office serves the Court of Appeals as well as the District Courts, Bankruptcy Courts, Probation and Pretrial Offices, and Federal Public Defenders.

The OCE was created by statute to provide professional administrative staffing to circuit councils, which are composed primarily of judges engaged full-time in deciding cases. The OCE provides administrative support to the Judicial Council of the Ninth Circuit and its various committees. It also provides direct services to all the judicial court units in the Circuit. All OCE responsibilities flow from directives of the Judicial Council or the Chief Judge of the Ninth Circuit. The OCE is organized around the council’s core functions.

The OCE is committed to providing professional support to the judicial council and courts of the Ninth Circuit and ensuring the highest level of public trust in the administration of justice. This support includes identifying needs, conducting studies, proactively developing and implementing innovative policies, providing training, public information and human resources support, coordinating building and IT projects, and advising the council on procedural and ethical matters.

We aspire to create an environment of mutual respect and collaboration, and to cultivate a culture of acceptance and connectedness that honors the diverse backgrounds of the people who live in the Ninth Circuit.

About the Role

The Assistant Circuit Executive (ACE) for Court Operations, Policy, and Legal Affairs keeps abreast of court operations, case processing, and management to effectively evaluate and make recommendations related to judgeships, judge positions, and court unit staffing. Manages multiple projects concurrently related to legal procedures and administrative processes as applied to the Ninth Circuit Judicial Council and court units in the Ninth Circuit. The Legal Affairs and Court Policy and Administration Units are headed by the ACE, who also serves as a senior policy advisor to the Chief Circuit Judge, circuit judges, Circuit Executive (CE), and other judges and leaders within the 9th Circuit.

The ACE serves as an expert on a wide range of legal and operational subject areas, including personnel, judicial administration, ethics, appropriations, government contracting, and statutory interpretation. The ACE attends senior-level meetings and council committee meetings.

Representative duties include:

  • Providing leadership, management, supervision, and coordination to attorneys, professional staff, paralegals, and support staff.
  • Responding to legal inquiries from the CE, judges, court officers, and others.
  • Conduct legal research and provide procedural and substantive advice on legal policy matters applicable to the OCE, the Circuit Council of the 9th Circuit and its committees.
  • Analyze and interpret federal statutes and regulations, Administrative Office of the United States Courts directives, policies and procedures, and court rules and orders affecting the operation and work of the OCE.
  • Provide staff support for the 9th Circuit Judicial Council.
  • Serving on committees, panels, and other ad hoc groups to assist the CE and Circuit Council.
  • Assess and use data analytics to forecast factors affecting federal case filings, trends, and work load by using a variety of analytical techniques related to environmental, statistical, operational, and case weight data. Analyze caseload and workload trends to assess the need for current and future judicial resources related to obtaining and retaining judgeships.
  • Oversee the maintenance of OCE databases on Article III judgeship vacancies, nominations, hearings, and confirmations, and information related to processes involving senior judge certification, the appointment and reappointment of bankruptcy judges, and the recall of bankruptcy and magistrate judges.
  • Coordinate the designation of visiting judges, temporary chambers staff, and other resources. Propose, administer, and evaluate effectiveness and cost of such programs.
  • Manage the Council's judicial misconduct procedures in compliance with 28 USC § 351-364, the Rules of the Ninth Circuit Judicial Council Governing Complaints of Judicial Misconduct and Disability, court rulings, and other legal standards. Investigates complaints, advising the Chief Circuit Judge and the Council on appropriate courses of action. Conducts fact-finding hearings before special investigative committees as needed. Implements Council findings and communicates with judicial officers, complainants, and members of the public as required.
  • Manages provisions of the Ethics Reform Act on behalf of the Chief Circuit Judge.
  • Prepares responses to requests for assistance from the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, other clerk’s offices, or as directed regarding proposed amendments to policies, codes, rules, and official forms. Responds to surveys and requests for information relating to court procedures and provides editorial review of manuals and other information upon request.
  • Monitors proposals before committees of the United States Judicial Conference and its committees for changes or impact upon Circuit operations and matters that impact the Circuit and the Courts within the 9th Circuit.
  • Monitors legislative proposals before the U.S. House and Senate Judiciary Committees in order to identity changes or impact upon Circuit operations. Drafts testimony for judges appearing before congressional committees, upon request.
  • Fulfills procurement and contracting responsibilities, such as drafting and reviewing contracts and purchase orders as required by procurement guidance advanced by the Administrative Office representatives in February 2004.
  • Other Duties as assigned.

Required Qualifications

  • An undergraduate degree in public administration, business administration, or comparable program is required.
  • At least five years of specialized experience in court administration including statistical and policy analysis.
  • At least four years of supervisory experience.
  • Familiarity with the federal courts and the regulations and policies of the executive and/or judicial branch of the federal government is desirable. Appropriate educational substitutions may be credited as one year of experience.
  • Juris Doctor degree from an ABA-approved law school.
  • Admission to practice before the highest court of any American state, commonwealth, territory, or possession.

Preferred Qualifications

  • An advanced degree in public administration.
  • Thorough knowledge of civil litigation and the federal rules of civil and appellate procedure.
  • Superior writing, speaking, listening, and presentation skills.
  • Advanced ability to think critically and strategically, and to develop and implement innovative programs and practices.
  • Exceptional emotional intelligence and track record of building strong relationships.

Position Details

  • Location: Position is based in the architectural landmark courthouse at Mission and 7th Street in San Francisco, where court staff is headquartered. Occasional travel within the 9th Circuit may be required.
  • Reports to: Deputy Circuit Executive.
  • Collaborates with: Judges, court executives, and managers.
  • Supervises: The Operations and Policy Unit and the Legal Unit including, lawyers, professional, and support staff.
  • Serves: About 500 employees, including judges and chambers staff as well as professional and administrative staff in the Court of Appeals, Office of the Circuit Executive, and Circuit Library. As needed, advises other judges and leaders in the Circuit.

Rewards & Perks

*Salary: $106,243 to $172,500 (CL 30 and CL 31), depending on qualifications and experience.

Time off: 10 paid holidays, 13 vacation days, and 13 sick leave days per year. After three years, vacation days accrue at a higher rate.


  • Federal pension plan and optional employer-matching Thrift Savings Plan (similar to a 401K).
  • Choice of a variety of employer-subsidized federal health and life insurance plans. Optional dental, vision, and long-term care coverage.
  • Flexible spending account to pay out-of-pocket health and dependent care expenses with tax-free dollars.
  • Other Perks: Telework opportunities; public transit subsidy; alternate work schedules; reasonable work hours; on-site gym and café.

How to Apply

Please submit your application through the Career Portal that includes: 1) a cover letter directly addressing this position, and 2) an up-to-date resume. Only applications with a cover letter and resume will be considered.

Next Steps

• Priority given to applications received by April 5, 2021

• Tentative interview dates:

  • Initial interviews: week of April 5, 2021. [Video conference interviews available],
  • Final interviews: the week of April 12, 2021.

• Anticipated start date: May 2020.

• Position open until filled.

Conditions of Employment

Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in the process of applying for citizenship. Successful applicants are provisionally hired pending results of background investigation and fingerprinting. Positions with the U.S. Courts are at-will, excepted service appointments, and may be terminated with or without cause by the Court. Employees are required to adhere to the Code of Conduct for Judicial Employees. Direct deposit of pay required.

The Court reserves the right to modify the conditions of this job announcement, or to withdraw the announcement, for any reason including, but not limited to, budgetary issues. Said modifications may occur without prior written or other notice.

Equity Focused Employer

We value diversity and are committed to equity and inclusion in our workplace. The OCE encourages applications from all qualified individuals and seeks a diverse pool of applicants in terms of race, ethnicity, national origin, sex, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, age, languages spoken, veteran’s status, disability, religion, and socio-economic circumstance.