Deputy County Counsel I, II, & III

County of Sonoma

Deputy County Counsel I, II, & III
$8,299 - $12,748/Monthly*

Join the Sonoma County Counsel and make a difference!
What makes Sonoma County a great choice?

Working at the County of Sonoma offers expansive opportunities for growth and development, the ability to be a part of a challenging and rewarding work environment, and the satisfaction of knowing you're working to better our communities. You can also look forward to a competitive total compensation package* including:
  • An annual Staff Development/Wellness Benefit allowance up to $1,700 and ongoing education/training opportunities
  • Competitive vacation and sick leave accruals, 12 paid holidays, and an additional 8 floating holiday hours per year
  • Significant portion of health care premiums paid by the County and access to several health plan options
  • County contribution to a Health Reimbursement Arrangement to help fund post-retirement employee health insurance/benefits
  • Retirement fully integrated with Social Security
  • May be eligible for up to 8 weeks (320 hours) of Paid Parental Leave after 12 months of County employment
  • Eligibility for a salary increase after 1,040 hours (6 months when working full-time) for good work performance; eligibility for a salary increase for good performance every year thereafter, until reaching the top of the salary range


The Deputy County Counsel position represents a great opportunity to work in beautiful Sonoma wine country and join a collegial team of attorneys and staff committed to public service and quality of life. In this exciting role, you will provide legal counsel to a variety of departments within the County. The successful candidate will regularly: 
  • Draft legal documents such as memoranda, briefs, writs, and appeals
  • Appear in court on review calendars and contested hearing calendars
  • Participate in settlement conferences
  • Work collaboratively with other team members
  • Study and apply new case law, statutory law, and legislative changes
  • Attend trainings, and in turn, may train other attorneys 

The Deputy County Counsel may assist with other work performed by attorneys in County Counsel's areas of responsibility. Interested candidates should be able to perform the following essential functions:
  • Provide legal counsel and representation to County departments, special districts, and the Board of Supervisors pertaining to their powers, duties and the law respecting the exercise of such power and duties
  • Study, analyze, interpret, and apply laws, court decisions, ordinances, and other legal authorities in order to advise County officers, department heads and political subdivisions on legal matters
  • Research, formulate, present, and support legal opinions, written and oral, pertaining to County government
  • Research, draft, and present legal briefs, petitions, ordinances, resolutions and/or court orders
  • Review and prepare contracts, leases, purchase agreements, and/or employee service agreements
  • Prepare and conduct litigation pertaining to County legal matters, including defending civil actions or proceedings involving the County, its officers and employees, or prosecuting litigation on behalf of the County and its agencies as plaintiff or petitioner
  • Assist County Counsel in the preparation of the more complex litigation pertaining to County legal matters
  • Provide guidance, instruction, and assistance to clerical support staff as necessary to secure an acceptable level of work product
  • Maintain correspondence with County departments and various other agencies in matters pertaining to assigned work


The Ideal Candidate will possess: 
  • Public law experience
  • Exceptional research and written communication skills
  • Courtroom experience including trial advocacy is highly desired
  • A demonstrated ability to creatively problem-solve
  • Experience with complex and fast-moving projects
  • The ability to effectively work independently and as part of a team
  • An excellent academic record is highly desired

IMPORTANT: The position will be filled at the I, II, or III level. If you are interested in applying at the I, II, and/or III level, you will need to apply to the separate, concurrent recruitment being conducted for those classifications.


The Sonoma County Counsel's Office is committed to providing the highest quality legal representation and advice, in a timely and responsive manner, to assist the County, its governing Board of Supervisors, and other clients to promote the public interest, achieve programmatic and strategic goals, and protect financial resources.

County Counsel is the primary provider of legal services to the Board of Supervisors, County departments, the Grand Jury, and over 25 special districts, including the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District, Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit District (SMART), Sonoma County Water Agency (SCWA), Sonoma County Employees' Retirement Association (SCERA), Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO), and Sonoma County Transportation Authority (SCTA). The Office provides legal staff to many County commissions, and its attorneys regularly provide counsel to the Board of Supervisors, Planning Commission, Civil Service Commission, and Board of Zoning Adjustments at public meetings and hearings.

County Counsel attorneys regularly appear in court on behalf of County departments and on such matters as juvenile dependency cases, code enforcement actions, bail recovery, and mental health competency hearings. County Counsel either directly handles, or coordinates outside counsel, in the defense of all claims filed against the County, and proactively works with departments to minimize risk and assist in policy development and implementation.

The Office of approximately 30 attorneys and 10 support staff places a high value on its collegial atmosphere and on its commitment to providing excellent legal services. It is structured into five practice groups: Health and Human Services; Infrastructure and Public Resources; Land Use; Litigation; and Natural Resources and Resiliency. Each Group is supervised by a Chief Deputy County Counsel and overall office supervision functions through the Assistant County Counsel and County Counsel. All staff is relied upon to work independently, meet client needs, and exercise sound judgment.

*Salary is negotiable and benefits described herein do not represent a contract and may be changed without notice. For more information, including minimum qualifications, & to apply, visit, or call 707-565-2331. EOE Apply by 10/26/20