Office of the Secretary of the Interior Administrative Judge, Interior Board of Indian Appeals in Arlington, Virginia

Office of the Secretary of the Interior
1 vacancy in the following location:
  • Arlington, VA
Work Schedule is Full Time - Excepted Service - Permanent

Opened Friday 10/14/2016 (12 day(s) ago)

** Closes Monday 11/14/2016 (19 day(s) away)

Job Overview

About the Agency

Are you interested in joining -

  • An agency whose mission includes protecting and preserving America’s special places, such as the Statue of Liberty, Yellowstone National Park, or the Grand Canyon?

  • An agency whose responsibilities touch the lives of all Americans, and contributes to the Nation’s environmental quality, economic vitality, and the well-being of communities, including those of Native Americans, Alaska Natives and affiliated Islanders? The Department of the Interior has a multifaceted mission that combines natural resource protection, recreation, natural resource use, services to communities and individuals, and biological and earth sciences. We are seeking individuals who share a passion for our country’s most valuable resources and a commitment to obtaining, training, and retaining a highly skilled and diverse workforce needed to accomplish our exciting and challenging mission.

The Department of the Interior:

  • Manages one in every five acres of land in the United States.

  • Operates more than 800 dams and irrigation facilities.

  • Oversees water projects that irrigate lands generating 60 percent of our Nation’s vegetables.

  • Manages lands and waters that generate one-third of the Nation’s domestic energy supply.

  • Undertakes research and provides scientific information to advance our knowledge of our surroundings.

  • Serves American Indians, Alaska Natives, and affiliated island communities.

  • Works with States to restore abandoned mine land sites and protects communities.

  • Manages 388 national park units and 542 wildlife refuges.

  • Employs over 75,000 individuals at approximately 2,400 locations across the United States, Puerto Rico, U.S. territories, and freely associated states who work with thousands of state, local, and public interest groups to help cities and towns address their natural resource needs.


NOTE: Special requirements for current and former political appointees. See How to Apply section for more information.

The incumbent of this position will serve as an Administrative Judge on the Interior Board of Indian Appeals (IBIA). The IBIA is an appellate review body that acts as the authorized representative of the Secretary of the Interior for considering and determining as fully and finally as might the Secretary, appeals from decisions of the Departmental officials involving Indian matters. The IBIA is located in the Department's Office of Hearing and Appeals, and exercises independent review authority over decisions of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and in some cases decisions of the Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs and other Departmental officials, arising from the Department's relationship and dealing with individual Indians and Indian Tribes. The IBIA also considers and determines appeals from decisions rendered by Administrative Law Judges and Indian Probate Judges regarding the inheritance of Indian trust property. In addition, the IBIA may consider and decide any other matter pertaining to Indian affairs which may be specially referred to it by the Secretary or the Director, Office of Hearing and Appeals. As a member of the IBIA, the incumbent is assigned to participate in a panel of judges through which the IBIA, as the authorized representative of the Secretary, reviews and decides appeals where a right of appeal is provided by regulation. The incumbent will prepare decisions on appeals in Indian cases involving a wide variety of statutes and regulations pertaining to Indian law.

Travel Required
  • Occasional Travel
  • Less than 10%
Relocation Authorized
  • No
Job Requirements
Key Requirements
  • You must be a U.S. citizen to qualify for this position.
  • Participation in direct deposit is required.
  • A J.D. or LL.B. degree is required.
  • Bar Membership: Active and in good standing is required.
  • Applicants must separately address the Mandatory Qualifications.
  • This is a high risk position and requires a BI level investigation.


  1. Broad legal knowledge and understanding of Federal Indian law; administrative law; and land and natural resources law or environment law, including relevant statutes, regulations, and case law.
  2. Ability to quickly develop a specialized knowledge of unfamiliar substantive areas of law.
  3. Ability to manage a significant personal caseload and to produce a high volume of quality work in a timely manner.
  4. Ability to analyze and synthesize voluminous and technically complex evidentiary materials or administrative records and conduct legal research.
  5. Experience in writing Departmental-level decisional documents, appellate briefs in administrative or judicial proceedings, or equivalent written products.
  6. Skills in oral and written communications, especially the ability to write clearly, concisely, and persuasively.
  7. Skills in consensus-building.
  8. Ability to work with colleagues and coworkers, at all organizational levels, in a collaborative and congenial manner.

Applicants who meet all the Mandatory Qualifications may be evaluated by a panel of experts to determine the degree to which they possess each of the listed qualifications. This evaluation will determine which applicants are best qualified. Total background, including experience, education, awards, self-development, and training will be reviewed. This information will be obtained from the application package, including the* required* narrative statement for the Mandatory Qualifications described above.**

Note regarding application of Veterans' Preference:There is no formal rating system for applying veterans' preference to attorney appointments in the excepted service; however, the Department of the Interior considers veterans' preference eligibility as a positive factor in attorney hiring. Applicants claiming veteran’s preference must submit supporting documentation (e.g., DD 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, and any other supporting documentation) which verifies their eligibility for preference. It is also recommended that you include this information in your cover letter or resume. Additional information on veterans' preference is available in the* Vet Guide*.

Applicants must have a J.D. or LL.B. degree and be current members in good standing of a bar of a State, the District of Columbia, or a territory or commonwealth of the United States. YOU MUST PROVIDE PROOF THAT YOU MEET THIS REQUIREMENT.

Additionally, applicants must have at least seven years of progressively responsible professional legal experience. Qualifying experience must be of a type and level sufficient to demonstrate the applicant’s ability to render final decisions in appeals covering a wide range of complex, highly contested issues in an efficient and timely manner.

As a basic requirement, applicants must demonstrate progressively responsible leadership experience that is indicative of senior level managerial capability and directly related to the skills and abilities outlined under Mandatory Qualifications below. Typically, experience of this nature will have been gained at or above the GS-14/15 grade level in the Federal service or its equivalent with state or local government, the private sector, or nongovernmental organizations. Failure to meet basic qualification requirements and all mandatory qualifications listed automatically disqualifies an applicant.

Security Clearance

Public Trust - Background Investigation

Additional Information
What To Expect Next

We will conduct a qualifications evaluation of applicants who supply all requested material. Qualified applicants will be rated and ranked by a panel. Best qualified candidates will be referred to the selecting official for further consideration and possible interview. A writing sample may be requested. You will be notified of the outcome after completion of the selection process.


Review our benefits

Other Information

The applicant selected for this position will be required to file a Financial Disclosure Report, SF-278, and the supplemental form, Confidential Statement of Employment and Financial Interest, DI-278. All forms must be filed within 30 days after the selection for this position.

The sensitivity level of the position requires completion of a successful background investigation of the selectee. Prior to appointment, all applicants tentatively selected for this position may be required to submit to urinalysis to screen for illegal drug use.

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, martial status, disability, age, membership in an employee organization, or other non-merit factor.

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process should contact the hiring authority directly. Determination on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Privacy Act -Privacy Act Notice (P.L. 93-579): The information requested here is used to determine qualifications for employment and is authorized under Title 5 U.S.C. 3302 and 3361.

Selective Service- If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959 you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law.

Salary Range: $123,175.00 to $185,100.00 / Per Year

Series & Grade: SL-0905-00/00

Promotion Potential: 00

Supervisory Status: No

Who May Apply: United States Citizens

Control Number: 453288700

Job Announcement Number: OS-6080-16-EJW-218 (SL)