Employment Opportunity – Deputy Executive Director, Canadian Environmental Law Association

The Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA) is a non-profit, public interest organization established in 1970 to use existing laws to protect the environment and to advocate for environmental law reforms. Funded by Legal Aid Ontario, CELA is one of 76 community legal clinics located across Ontario, 18 of which offer services in specialized areas of the law.  CELA’s strategic priorities include access to environmental justice, and prevention of harm from pollution on behalf of low income and vulnerable communities.  CELA is also prioritizing reaching diverse communities who are historically underserved in access to justice.  CELA also delivers projects funded by Foundations and governments in the areas of environmental law and justice, and works with its sister organization the CELA Foundation on public legal education on environmental issues and providing an exceptional repository of environmental history and literature.

CELA seeks an exceptional candidate for the newly created position of Deputy Executive Director.

Employment Term:  Permanent full time
Reports to:  Executive Director


The following background and professional experience describe the ultimately successful candidate for this important position:

  • Several years of leadership experience.
  • Professional qualifications in law or another discipline related to the practice of environmental law.
  • A demonstrated commitment to equity and social justice.
  • Experience managing and supervising staff.
  • Experience in program or service delivery.
  • Experience with overseeing budgets, fundraising, and communications.
  • Ability to work in a complex environment, with competing priorities and deadlines.
  • Legal experience would be preferred.
  • Experience in the not-for-profit sector or legal aid clinic system would be an asset.
  • The successful candidate will be a strong team player who can inspire others and assist them in reaching their full potential in meeting the collective needs of the CELA client community.


The CELA Deputy ED will support the ED in providing executive oversight of the organization and delivering on CELA’s mandate.  Responsibilities will include acting as a member of CELA’s Management Committee, and supporting the CELA and the CELA Foundation Boards of Directors.

Working with the direction of the ED, these responsibilities will include:

  • Development and oversight of annual budgets, oversight and approval of expenditures and oversight of Contract Bookkeeper
  • Human Resources and Labour Relations (job descriptions, hiring, employment contracts, performance reviews for supervised positions, member of the employee-employer relations committee, implementation of Collective Agreement), bargaining and compensation review
  • Special Projects oversight (reviewing and approving; ensuring consistency with CELA mandate; ensuring deliverables and budgets)
  • Overseeing communications including websites, CELA Annual report, monthly e-bulletins, social media, media releases and implementation of the CELA communications strategy, tools and resources
  • Ensuring the systematic review and updating of CELA policies

The CELA Deputy ED will supervise all non-legal staff such as contract Senior Fundraiser, Engagement and Communications coordinator, Legal and Information Administrator, Office Manager, Contract Bookkeeper, and will ensure training of administrative team members in required competencies.

There is potential for responsibilities on clinic files or projects, depending on the successful candidate’s background and experience.

CELA will begin assessment of candidates for this important, newly created leadership position immediately.  Applications or inquiries should be addressed in strict confidence by email only to:

Theresa McClenaghan, Executive Director and Counsel


CELA encourages applicants from equity-seeking groups, including but not limited to individuals who are of Indigenous descent, members of LGBTQI2S, persons with disabilities, members of racialized communities and women.

Download a .pdf version of this posting here:  Deputy ED CELA Posting