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General Counsel

ClientEarth is Europe's leading public interest environmental law organisation with over 70 qualified lawyers and more than 100 staff in total, working from headquarters in London and offices in Berlin, Brussels, Warsaw and New York City. Bringing together law, science and policy, ClientEarth creates practical and impactful solutions to some of society’s most pressing environmental challenges. It was Britain's first public interest law organisation when it was founded in 2007, and is now internationally recognised as a significant force within the environmental movement.

Due to ClientEarth’s significant growth, the role of General Counsel was created to shape overall programme direction to build ClientEarth’s successful public interest law practice across Europe and beyond. The General Counsel’s would also to build ClientEarth’s profile globally on policy and legal matters, working in close partnership with the Founder Chief Executive, the Board and Senior Management Team.

ClientEarth engaged Prospectus to carry out the international executive search for this critical role. We were looking for individuals with substantial experience of legal practice and litigation, and in particular of using the law creatively to achieve change, and significant experience of leading large, high performing teams. In addition, it was critical that candidates could evidence in-depth understanding of international legal frameworks and a keen interest in environmental issues.

Douglas Ruley was appointed and joined ClientEarth as General Counsel in October 2017. He brings 30 years of experience in environmental law and litigation in the United States, which have included serving as a staff attorney for Earthjustice in Alaska, as managing attorney for the Asheville office of the Southern Environmental Law Center, as the Director of the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic at Vermont Law School, and as counsel to a private law firm.  He has litigated many cases involving forests and biodiversity, marine resources, endangered species, transportation and land use, and air and water pollution. Pursuant to a Fulbright Fellowship, Doug also taught at the University of Ljubljana law school in 2010-11. He graduated from Harvard Law School magna cum laude in 1987.