Legal Director, Programs | ReliefWeb


Vital Strategies is a US-based international public health organization working in more than 70 countries to strengthen public health systems and address leading causes of morbidity and mortality.
Resolve to Save Lives is an initiative of Vital Strategies with a mission to prevent 100 million deaths from heart disease and to make the world safer from epidemics. We are led by Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Resolve to Save Lives is transitioning to an independent public health organization to maximize its global impact with speed, simplicity, and scale. Read more about our work at
We believe our programs are strengthened when they are developed and supported by individuals with diverse life experiences, whose understanding of social and cultural issues can help make our work and workforce more inclusive. We encourage people of all racial, economic, social, cultural, sexual orientation, and gender expressions to apply.

The Position
Resolve to Save Lives is seeking a Legal Director, Programs to support our core programs – Prevent Epidemics and Cardiovascular Health – with partnership, analysis, strategy and action to reduce legal and regulatory constraints preventing effective epidemic preparedness and fueling cardiovascular disease in low- and middle-income countries. The position will be part of a new Policy, Advocacy, and Legal unit and will report to the Vice President, Policy Advocacy and Legal and work closely with both program teams, including the Director of Nutrition Policy under the cardiovascular health team. The Legal Director, Programs will directly manage legal staff within our two program teams as well as support a number of legal advisors embedded in ministries of health Resolve partners with across Sub-Saharan Africa.

This role will set strategy and provide technical guidance and support for country teams to work effectively with stakeholders in introducing or amending key pieces of legislation related to International Health Regulations, health systems, and food policy, especially trans fat elimination regulations and policies to reduce sodium intake. This role will also be part of several global partnerships and working groups, including with the World Health Organization, helping to create technical packages, guidance, and tools to strengthen legal frameworks that support improved health outcomes.

This full-time position is currently remote. The incumbent will be expected to convene routinely for team meetings in NYC beginning in January 2022.

Main Responsibilities:

  • Work closely with Prevent Epidemics and Cardiovascular Health leadership on strategy for an enabling legal and regulatory environment for public health programs
  • Design and conduct analysis of relevant existing laws, regulations, policies, and procedures in countries in which Resolve to Save Lives is engaged in public health initiatives, and in particular cardiovascular health (including food policy) and epidemic preparedness work
  • Provide technical assistance to governments in legal/regulatory analysis and strategy including, in response to formal requests from national counterparts, overseeing the drafting or adaption of new legislation and policy related to Resolve’s mission
  • Contribute legal/regulatory perspective and input to Resolve program priorities including technical work and policy advocacy:
    • Provide supervision and technical assistance to Resolve priority programs in support of legal activities related to primary objectives of cardiovascular disease prevention (including food policy) and preventing epidemics (including International Health regulations)
    • Provide internal legal analysis to strengthen the short- and long-term impact of policy advocacy activities, including through ensuring appropriate timing, specific asks, and tactical approaches. As relevant, provide legal review of key policy, advocacy and related products/tools in the development phase
    • Liaise with other public health lawyers in this space, in particular WHO and US CDC, to collaborate and strategically divide the work and maximize impact
    • Contribute to examination of international framework documents to improve language to reflect Resolve’s policy priorities
    • Actively contribute to strategy development for Resolve’s programs and global partnerships related to legal, regulatory and policy advocacy actions
  • Supervise and coordinate the work of legal advisors and legal consultants
  • Develop tools for legal drafting, analysis and strategy for internal and external use
  • Identify new opportunities, and develop and contribute to project/funding proposals for such work

Required Experience and Skills:

  • JD, LLM or equivalent degree
  • Minimum 15 years of experience in relevant area(s) of work
  • Demonstrated experience in legal analysis and the drafting of laws and regulations
  • Prior experience working in or with the government ministries with a focus on public health
  • Experience working in low- and middle-income countries
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Experience in team management and staff supervision
  • ​​​​​​​Exceptional collaboration skills

Preferred Experience:

  • Experience working in food policy


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