Legal & Policy Internship Program

Interns will assist Russian Riverkeeper’s Staff Attorney and Executive Director in advocating for the health and protection of the Russian River Watershed, while working remotely. Projects will include researching issues for potential litigation and advocating through policy work to help further watershed governance.

The position is designed to provide a wide range of policy, legal, programmatic, and administrative experience relating to environmental issues of state and national significance, as well as issues relating to 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations.

Interns will be expected to provide detailed legal research, writing, and general support for our ongoing advocacy work. The internship program covers a diverse range of issues affecting our watershed, from the public trust doctrine to the Clean Water Act (CWA), and is a wonderful opportunity for law students dedicated to environmental law and policy to get hands-on experience at a small, environmental non-profit.

Both part-time and full-time internships are available with opportunity for pay. Part-time internships will primarily be offered in the Spring & Fall, with 15-20hrs expected each week for approximately 15 weeks. Full-time internships will primarily be offered in the Summer, with 32-40hrs expected each week for approximately 12 weeks. All internships will coincide with the academic calendar and exact dates will be discussed during the interview process.

Learning Experiences

If chosen to intern with Russian Riverkeeper, you will become engaged in a variety of watershed issues and learn how on-the-ground advocacy is used to effect environmental change. Some ways you will learn and gain new experience is through:

  • Practical experience working at a well-established environmental non-profit
  • First-hand interaction and knowledge from working with local and regional agencies
  • Experience in researching and writing internal legal & policy memos for a variety of timely water-related issues
  • Experience writing newsletter articles about complex water issues in lay terms, and communicating ideas to a variety of audiences
  • Opportunity to provide oral comments before local and state water agencies, as well as other local governments
  • Opportunity to provide written comments to regional and state water boards for key CWA permits and other programs
  • Opportunity to meet other environmental lawyers that Russian Riverkeeper sometimes works with on cases

Application Process

Interested candidates should apply by submitting the following documents to Tamara Evans, Bookkeeper, at with the subject line: RRK Internship Program. Please submit cover letter, unofficial transcript and legal writing sample in .pdf format with the following naming convention: last name_file type_current year. For example, Ginsburg_writing sample_2021.

In cover letter, be sure to include things like: Why are you interested in interning with Russian Riverkeeper? What past experience and knowledge do you have that may be useful to your interning with Russian Riverkeeper? What is your desired intern time period (i.e. Spring, Fall, or Summer)? and contact information (i.e. email & phone number).

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis until positions are filled, with early applications preferred. All applications will be anonymized before review by the Staff Attorney and Executive Director. Only once potential candidates have been selected for an interview will any identifying information be revealed. Those chosen for interviews will be contacted to set up a date and time for a zoom meeting.

Required Qualifications

Open to any LLM or law student currently in good-standing at their school.

Qualified candidates should possess strong writing, research, legal analysis, and communication skills.

Demonstrated commitment to environmental conservation and other experience relevant to Russian Riverkeeper’s mission is preferable.

Ability to perform obligations remotely, in a timely and efficient manner.