Job Opportunity (deadline Nov22): ED & General Counsel Canadian Civil Liberties Association

The CCLA is hiring a combined ED/GC ("consideration will be given to splitting the roles"). Accessing the page at the search firm is a little tricky - click here, and choose Ontario and Legal as your filters.  The ad is copied below. 

"The Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA) is a non-profit organization in Canada devoted to the defence of civil liberties and constitutional rights. CCLA is a human rights and national civil liberties organization committed to defending the rights, dignity, safety, and freedoms of all people in Canada. Founded in 1964, CCLA is the pre-eminent voice advocating for the rights and freedoms of all Canadians and all persons living in Canada, working in the courts, before legislative committees, in the classrooms, and in the streets, protecting the dignity and rights of Canadians.

CCLA participates in public interest litigation as a party and as an intervenor; testifies before federal and provincial legislative bodies and before public inquiries; conducts surveys of people’s experiences with various laws; publishes articles and appears regularly in the mass media. Through the Canadian Civil Liberties Education Trust (CCLET), a non-profit research and educational organization created by CCLA, they provide workshops, seminars, and in-class sessions for schools, school boards, faculties of education, and community groups and nonprofit agencies, educating people in Canada about their rights and freedoms.. CCLA raises funds from the general public and private donors. To maintain independence, CCLA does not accept money from the government. The lawyers retained by CCLA do so on a pro bono basis.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion are key to the work of the CCLA. In order to reflect a thorough and inclusive process candidates from equity seeking groups are encouraged to apply and consider their lived experience as well as their professional skills and attributes when assessing their suitability.


CCLA has doubled in size over the past few years in both revenues and staff, and anticipates significant growth over the next 3-5 years as the current human rights and civil liberties issues continue to emerge and evolve, and as CCLA seeks to expand its education programs.

The Executive Director and General Counsel will lead the CCLA through this growth, applying its strategic advancement plan, building a base of major donors to support growth, raising public consciousness while extending reach nationally and into new communities, and will build, develop, and support the team to meet the organization’s goals as set out in its strategic plan. You will steward donors and lead major gift appeals and campaigns, working with a senior director of advancement. With responsibility for day-to-day leadership and operations, you will lead a team of approximately 15 skilled and passionate team members committed to defending the rights, dignity, and freedoms of all people in Canada; you will manage the charity’s operation and compliance and its budget, with quarterly financial and HR reports and annual audit.

To date, CCLA has combined the roles of Executive Director and General Counsel, but consideration will be given to splitting the roles into two positions. Please indicate if you see your application as suited to one, the other, or both roles.

The ideal candidate for this role is an excellent leader, manager, and fundraiser, with a commitment to civil liberties and human rights. Diverse life experiences support your dedication to the social justice sector and engagement in being a part of the strategic change of fundamental rights and freedoms issues in Canada. Legal and/or public advocacy experience in a field related to civil liberties and human rights is a strong asset.

Comfortable dealing with ambiguity, and as the face of the organization, you are charismatic, professional, respectful of the team’s expertise, have an excellent sense of judgment and inspire trust and confidence. The ideal candidate brings knowledge about the industry, the organization, and its partners.

This is an outstanding opportunity to have an impact across Canada - to lead a charity but, more importantly, to lead the effort to defend Canadian rights.

Applications are encouraged immediately and should be submitted online below by November 22nd, 2021. For more information, please contact Margaret Vanwyck of Odgers Berndtson at [email protected]. We thank all those who express an interest, however only those chosen for further development will be contacted.



Canadian Civil Liberties Association is an equal opportunity employer. In accordance with the Accessible Canada Act, 2019 and all applicable provincial accessibility standards, upon request, accommodation will be provided by both Odgers Berndtson and Canadian Civil Liberties Association throughout the recruitment, selection and/or assessment process to applicants with disabilities.



Odgers Berndtson is deeply committed to diversity, equity and inclusion in all our work. As part of our efforts to better understand our ability to reach as broad a pool of candidates as pos-sible for our searches, our DEI team would like to encourage you to take a moment and access our Self-Declaration Form.


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