Legal Director

Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness


Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness (the “Friends”) is seeking a full-time attorney to serve as our Legal Director. In this role, the Legal Director will help set, manage, and implement a legal strategy that furthers the Friends’ mission of protecting, preserving, and restoring the wilderness character of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (“Boundary Waters”) and the Quetico-Superior ecosystem.

A major focus of the Friends is to protect this ecosystem from threats posed by proposed copper-sulfide mines such as PolyMet and Twin Metals. This position provides oversight of our outside legal counsel and works with coalition partners to set legal strategies for these topics. This position also identifies emerging legal and conservation issues facing the ecosystem and develops legal regulatory, administrative, and litigation strategies to address these issues. In addition, this position manages real estate, employment, intellectual property, reporting and compliance, and other legal issues relating to the operation of a nonprofit organization.

Primary Relationships

  • The Legal Director will report directly to the Executive Director.
  • Works effectively with other departments within the Friends, with our outside legal counsel, and with Board of Directors advisors.


  • Manages the Friends’ ongoing federal and state litigation involving the Twin Metals and PolyMet copper-sulfide mines, including working closely with the Friends’ outside legal counsel and co-counsel from other nonprofit organizations to set litigation strategies relating to these mining projects.
  • Assists in writing comments in response to mining plans
  • Provides guidance on legal issues and drafts legal documents relating to real estate transactions
  • Manages legal issues relating to the operation of a nonprofit organization, including employment, cybersecurity, intellectual property, and reporting and compliance requirements
  • Builds and participates in collaborative relationships with the Friends’ nonprofit partners 


  • Juris Doctorate degree.
  • A minimum of five years of environmental, related practice, or legal advocacy experience.
  • Licensed to practice law in good standing in Minnesota or be able to become licensed
  • Excellent litigation and legal advocacy skills, including legal research, writing and oral advocacy skills.
  • Initiative, good judgment, and a strong work ethic.
  • Ability to work independently and in collaboration with staff and outside partners.
  • Passion for preserving the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
  • Public Policy experience is a plus 

Compensation and Benefits

  • $80,000 – $100,000 per year salary
  • Paid vacation and sick leave, health insurance, and a 403(b) retirement plan.
  • In addition to paid vacation and sick leave, the Friends provides a $300 stipend and five additional paid vacation days to each employee to take time off and recharge in the Boundary Waters.
  • Flexible working hours
  • $50 per month transportation allowance for public transit or parking.
  • We encourage life-long learning and ongoing professional development. 

To Apply

Please submit a cover letter, resume, references and two writing samples to:

Ms. Bree Sikorski
Operations Director
Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness
2250 University Ave W
Suite 180S
Saint Paul, MN 55114

In the subject line of any electronic communication, please put “Legal Director Position.”

Applications will be accepted until September 13, 2021.

At the Friends, we have a clear vision to be the place where a diverse mix of talented people want to come, to stay, and do their best work. The Friends is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age or veteran status.