Memphis Area Legal Services Seeks CEO


Position: Chief Executive Officer

Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS) is the primary provider of civil legal representation for low income individuals and families in Fayette, Lauderdale, Shelby, and Tipton counties in Tennessee who are facing critical, sometimes life-threatening situations. Legal assistance is provided through advice and counsel, representation in court and administrative proceeding, and community education and outreach to vulnerable residents. Since 1970, MALS has grown to become a multi-faceted community law firm guided by values and principles that embody its commitment to equal access to justice for all.

MALS has an annual budget of approximately $4.5M million with funding from the Legal Services Corporation, as well as various federal, state, and local sources of grant funding and private donations. 


Basic Function

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) will lead a strong, client-centered law firm with an experienced and dedicated team of attorneys and support staff located in offices in Memphis and Covington.  The CEO will bring leadership, administrative, and litigation experience to build on MALS’s extensive collaborative relationships with the courts, state and local bar associations, and other legal and social service providers.  The CEO reports directly to the MALS Board of Directors.  The CEO will work collaboratively with the Board to develop the organization’s vision and strategic direction of the organization. The CEO will directly supervise the senior management team and the Executive Assistant. 



  • Serve as the public face of MALS in its relationships with clients, funders, bar associations, courts, other legal providers, human services organizations, private donors and businesses.
  • Facilitate communication and collaboration within MALS’s Board, volunteers, and staff.
  • Develop, maintain, and support a strong Board of Directors; serve as ex-officio of each committee, seek and build board involvement with strategic direction for ongoing operations.
  • Lead, coach, develop and retain MALS’ high-performance senior management team.
  • Ensure effective systems to track scaling progress, and regularly evaluate program components so as to measure successes that can be effectively communicated to the Board, funders, and other constituents.
  • Lead MALS’ fundraising efforts and work with its Board and the Chief Development Officer to support and expand MALS’ fundraising.
  • Assures an effective fund development program and guides the Board in actively participating in the solicitation of funds and giving to the organization.
  • Oversee MALS’ operational and fiscal systems to insure that MALS fulfills its obligations and responsibilities under its multiple grants and contracts and complies with all applicable requirements and regulations.
  • Oversees the fiscal activities of the organization including budgeting, forecasting, reporting and audit.
  • Collaborate with other legal aid and legal services programs in the state in the coordination of the delivery of services to clients.
  • Acts as an advocate within the public and private sectors on issues relevant to MALS, its services and constituencies.



The CEO is a highly energetic individual with proven leadership, coaching and relationship management experience. Licensed attorney in Tennessee or have the ability to become licensed by reciprocity. In depth knowledge and understanding of issues that impact low income persons and commitment to the legal rights of low income and other vulnerable individuals. At least ten (10) years of management experience preferred, including supervision of staff, financial management, budget development, compliance with grant and contract requirements, and grant reporting.



Salary DOE w/excellent benefits, including 401(K).



For a full description of the position and to apply, please visit our website at:


Applications for the position should include a cover letter, detailing the candidate’s qualifications for the position, a resume, a writing sample, contact information for three professional references, and salary requirements. Applications should be e-mailed to: HR@ in Word or PDF format.


Inquiries regarding this position may be directed to Elaine St. Clemmons, Chief Operations Officer at


MALS is an E.O.E.