The goal of the Legal Recruitment Bureau is to provide the Office with a well-qualified legal staff whose diverse backgrounds reflect an ability to relate to the community as well as strong interest and achievement in the fields of criminal law and public service. To achieve this goal, the unit supervises and coordinates the application and hiring process for all new assistant district attorneys in the Bronx.
The Office hires new attorneys each year. Some of these new prosecutors are practicing lawyers who are appointed as vacancies develop. Most vacancies, however, are filled from the ranks of more than 1,000 third-year law students who complete a three-tier interview process both on law school campuses and within our Office.
First-round interviews are conducted by selected individual assistant district attorneys and are generally conducted from August through October. Upon successful completion of the first interview, the applicant may be invited to return for a panel interview, generally conducted in October and November. The final interview is with District Attorney Johnson in December.
Assistant district attorneys begin employment during the subsequent year and are considered part of a recruitment "Class." Those who were recruited and offered positions in 2011 are considered part of the Class of 2012, reflecting the year during which their employment begins.
In 2012, approximately 1,100 individuals from 96 law schools applied for the position of Bronx assistant district attorney for the Class of 2013. Of these applicants, 687 (62%) had first-round interviews, 375 (34%) had second (panel) interviews, and 122 (11%) were interviewed by the District Attorney. Mr. Johnson appointed 80 (7%) of the original applicants as assistant district attorneys for the Class of 2013.
The Recruitment Unit makes a special effort to attract applications from qualified women, people of color and others from diverse backgrounds. As a result, minority representation on the legal staff of the Office has increased over the years. In 1989, 24% of the legal staff were people of color. In December of 2012, there were 109 Bronx assistant district attorneys who were people of color, 27% of the legal staff. Furthermore, 29 of the 52 assistant district attorneys hired in 2011 for the Class of 2012 were women, bringing the total number of women represented to 57% of the legal staff as of December 31, 2012. In addition, 54% of the assistants hired in 2012 for the Class of 2013 were women, and 47% were minorities.
Law school students interested in applying for assistant district attorney positions must apply by October 20th of their last year of study. Lateral attorneys are considered for positions as openings develop.
All prospective candidates should send the following items to the Legal Recruitment Bureau:
- Cover Letter
- Completed Employment Application (including a Statement of Interest and Conditions of Employment form)
- Law School Transcript (it can be unofficial initially)
- Writing Sample
- Three Letters of Reference (should be received prior to panel interview)
- Passport-Size Photograph (may be brought to panel interview)
The District Attorney requires that each applicant read and agree to comply with various Conditions of Employment. These conditions include a three-year written commitment of service to the Office; a New York State residency requirement; and readiness to work varying shifts, which include nights, holidays and weekends.
Applicants selected as assistant district attorneys are normally scheduled to start work in early October, shortly after taking the New York State Bar Examination. They are hired at an annual salary of $55,500 and are eligible for pension, health, dental and insurance benefits. New Assistant District Attorneys are generally assigned to the Criminal Court, Appeals, Investigations, or Domestic Violence Bureaus prosecuting misdemeanor offenses.
During the fall and spring semesters, the District Attorney provides opportunities for law students to work as interns in the Office for academic credit. These interns help assistant district attorneys prepare cases for trial and conduct legal research.
Additionally, each summer the Office conducts an eight-week internship program for approximately 20 law students and 5 college students. The interns in this program may receive a small stipend, the amount of which is determined by available resources. The summer internship program commences in June and terminates in July. Applications, consisting of a cover letter and resume, must be submitted to the address in Legal Employment Inquiries no later than February 15.
All inquiries regarding legal employment should be addressed to:
Bronx County District Attorney's Office
198 East 161st Street
Bronx, New York 10451
Attn: Maria T. Rivero
Executive Assistant District Attorney
(718) 590-6477 Fax
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*The Office of the Bronx County District Attorney is an Equal Opportunity Employer and opposes all forms of discrimination.*