Supervisory Attorney Advisor (FOIA/PA)

FOIA and Privacy Act Unit
Washington, DC 20530
United States
About the Office: 

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Privacy Act (PA) Unit of the Civil Division is seeking a Supervisory Attorney-Adviser (organizationally titled Chief, FOIA and PA Unit) to play an important role in implementing legally and procedurally strategic approaches to FOIA and privacy, developing strategies to meet priorities, and working closely with staff to respond to the growing number of information requests from the public.

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Privacy Act (PA) Unit is an innovative team charged with implementing legally and procedurally strategic approaches to FOIA, PA, and privacy compliance requirements. The FOIA/PA staff receives, reviews, and processes all FOIA and PA information requests received by the Division, prepares quarterly and annual reports, supports litigation when the Division is sued under the FOIA or PA, and serves as a liaison with other divisions and agencies on both FOIA and PA matters. The FOIA/PA Unit creates or reviews privacy compliance products, such as Initial Privacy Assessments, Privacy Impact Assessments, and System of Records Notices.

As the federal agency whose mission is to ensure the fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans, the Department of Justice is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive work environment. To build and retain a workforce that reflects the diverse experiences and perspectives of the American people, we welcome applicants from the many communities, identities, races, ethnicities, backgrounds, abilities, religions, and cultures of the United States who share our commitment to public service.

Job Description: 

The Supervisory Attorney-Adviser oversees the processing of FOIA and PA requests. The incumbent ensures that FOIA requests are handled in accordance with the applicable statutory requirements and policy guidance. The Supervisory Attorney Advisor creates or reviews privacy compliance products, such as Initial Privacy Assessments, Privacy Impact Assessments, and System of Records Notices.

As a GS-0905-15 Supervisory Attorney Advisor, your typical work assignments may include the following:

  • Supervising the day-to-day activities of the FOIA and PA staff, including contractors, by assigning projects, adjusting workloads, and providing feedback on staff performance and work product.
  • Collecting detailed information from various components and organizations to prepare detailed reports and correspondence in a timely manner.
  • Providing advice and interpretation of the FOIA and PA used for response to inquiries from the public.
  • Providing legal guidance to the Civil Division (Division) on the PA and privacy compliance requirements.
  • Providing advice to the supervisor and other Division officials and/or their designees on the legal implications of FOIA, PA, and associated legislation and regulation (e.g., Data Protection Act and Environmental Information Regulations) relating to the disclosure of information to members of the public, Congress, and other agencies.
  • Advising, coordinating, and training the staff and the Division on the legal and technical requirements of FOIA and PA policies and practices.
  • Working with the supervisor and other Division officials, and/or their designees, collabating with Division and Department leadership and attorneys involved in the Department's records and FOIA, e-Discovery, and Litigation Support initiatives to develop and implement Division and Department policies and procedures.

Applicants must have a J.D. degree earned through graduation from a full course of study in a School of Law accredited by the American Bar Association and be a member in good standing of the bar of a state, territory of the United States, the District of Columbia, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

Applicants must possess a J.D. degree, be an active member of the bar (any jurisdiction) and have at least four years of post J.D. experience to qualify at the GS-15 level.

You must also be a U.S. citizen.

Applicants must demonstrate knowledge of, and experience in, both legal and technical FOIA and Privacy Act disciplines. Applicants should have excellent writing, negotiation, and interpersonal skills; and exhibit good judgment.

155,700.00 - 183,500.00
Occasional Travel may be required for this position.
Application Process: 

To apply for this position, you must submit a cover letter, resume, and writing sample (not more than 10 pages in length). If you are claiming veterans preference, you must also submit your DD-214, and/or other documentation that you may have.

Applicants are encouraged to submit their materials by email to: and enter Supervisory Attorney Advisor in the subject line of the email.

No telephone calls, please.

Applicants should familiarize themselves and comply with the relevant rules of professional conduct regarding any possible conflicts of interest in connection with their applications. In particular, please notify this Office if you currently represent clients or adjudicate matters in which this Office is involved and/or you have a family member who is representing clients or adjudicating matters in which this Office is involved so that we can evaluate any potential conflict of interest or disqualification issue that may need to be addressed under those circumstances.

Application Deadline: 
Monday, September 25, 2023
Relocation Expenses: 
Relocation expenses will not be authorized.
Number of Positions: 
Updated September 22, 2023

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Department Policies

Equal Employment Opportunity:  The U.S. Department of Justice is an Equal Opportunity/Reasonable Accommodation Employer.  Except where otherwise provided by law, there will be no discrimination because of race, color, religion, national origin, sex - including gender identity, sexual orientation, or pregnancy status - or because of age (over 40), physical or mental disability, protected genetic information, parental status, marital status, political affiliation, or any other non-merit based factor.  The Department of Justice welcomes and encourages applications from persons with physical and mental disabilities. The Department is firmly committed to satisfying its affirmative obligations under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, to ensure that persons with disabilities have every opportunity to be hired and advanced on the basis of merit within the Department of Justice. For more information, please review our full EEO Statement.

Reasonable Accommodations:  This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the agency.  Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Outreach and Recruitment for Qualified Applicants with Disabilities:  The Department encourages qualified applicants with disabilities, including individuals with targeted/severe disabilities to apply in response to posted vacancy announcements.  Qualified applicants with targeted/severe disabilities may be eligible for direct hire, non-competitive appointment under Schedule A (5 C.F.R. § 213.3102(u)) hiring authority.  Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to contact one of the Department’s Disability Points of Contact (DPOC) to express an interest in being considered for a position. See list of DPOCs.   

Suitability and Citizenship:  It is the policy of the Department to achieve a drug-free workplace and persons selected for employment will be required to pass a drug test which screens for illegal drug use prior to final appointment.  Employment is also contingent upon the completion and satisfactory adjudication of a background investigation. Congress generally prohibits agencies from employing non-citizens within the United States, except for a few narrow exceptions as set forth in the annual Appropriations Act (see, Pursuant to DOJ component policies, only U.S. citizens are eligible for employment with the Executive Office for Immigration Review, U.S. Trustee’s Offices, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Unless otherwise indicated in a particular job advertisement, qualifying non-U.S. citizens meeting immigration and appropriations law criteria may apply for employment with other DOJ organizations. However, please be advised that the appointment of non-U.S. citizens is extremely rare; such appointments would be possible only if necessary to accomplish the Department's mission and would be subject to strict security requirements. Applicants who hold dual citizenship in the U.S. and another country will be considered on a case-by-case basis. All DOJ employees are subject to a residency requirement. Candidates must have lived in the United States for at least three of the past five years. The three-year period is cumulative, not necessarily consecutive. Federal or military employees, or dependents of federal or military employees serving overseas, are excepted from this requirement. This is a Department security requirement which is waived only for extreme circumstances and handled on a case-by-case basis.

Veterans:  There is no formal rating system for applying veterans' preference to attorney appointments in the excepted service; however, the Department of Justice considers veterans' preference eligibility as a positive factor in attorney hiring. Applicants eligible for veterans' preference must include that information in their cover letter or resume and attach supporting documentation (e.g., the DD 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty and other supporting documentation) to their submissions. Although the "point" system is not used, per se, applicants eligible to claim 10-point preference must submit Standard Form (SF) 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference, and submit the supporting documentation required for the specific type of preference claimed (visit the OPM website, for a copy of SF 15, which lists the types of 10-point preferences and the required supporting document(s). Applicants should note that SF 15 requires supporting documentation associated with service- connected disabilities or receipt of nonservice-connected disability pensions to be dated 1991 or later except in the case of service members submitting official statements or retirement orders from a branch of the Armed Forces showing that their retirement was due to a permanent service-connected disability or that they were transferred to the permanent disability retired list (the statement or retirement orders must indicate that the disability is 10% or more).

USAO Residency Requirement:  Assistant United States Attorneys must reside in the district to which appointed or within 25 miles thereof.  See 28 U.S.C. 545 for district specific information.

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This and other vacancy announcements can be found under Attorney Vacancies and Volunteer Legal Internships. The Department of Justice cannot control further dissemination and/or posting of information contained in this vacancy announcement. Such posting and/or dissemination is not an endorsement by the Department of the organization or group disseminating and/or posting the information.