Deadline:  August 21, 2020 5:00 pm

The Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) is an international organization created by Canada, Mexico and the United States (Parties) under the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC) and continued under the new Trade Agreement1 and the parallel Environmental Cooperation Agreement (ECA). The CEC’s mission is to facilitate cooperation and public participation to foster conservation, protection and enhancement of the North American environment for the benefit of present and future generations, in the context of increasing economic trade and social links between the new trade agreement partners. The Secretariat of the CEC is headquartered in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

This is a full-time two-year position with the possibility of renewal, based at the CEC Secretariat in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

The new Trade Agreement provides for a process allowing a person or entity to make a written assertion (“submission’) that one of the countries (a “Party” to the Agreement) is failing to effectively enforce its environmental law(s). Known as the Submissions on Enforcement Matters (SEM) process, this mechanism was established to provide the North American public with timely and relevant information regarding the enforcement of domestic environmental laws.

The Director of Legal Affairs and Submissions on Enforcement Matters manages the SEM process and is responsible for ensuring the timely receipt, analysis, and administration of individual submissions and for the preparation and submission to the CEC Council2 of any required determinations or resulting factual records.

In addition, the Director provides legal advice in the following areas:

  •  The operations of an international organization, including matters related to contracts, personnel, grants, ethics and human resources.
  • Advice, as needed, to the Executive Director and other Secretariat personnel in relation to the cooperative work program of the Parties under the ECA.
  • Issues relating to the privileges, immunities and independence of the CEC Secretariat under the new Trade Agreement, the ECA, and Canadian or international law.


In the case of US and Canadian citizens, the candidate must possess a law degree from an accredited law school and be a member of a bar of a jurisdiction within those countries. In the case of Mexican citizens, the candidate must possess a law degree from an accredited law school and a certification (cédula profesional) issued by the competent authority in Mexico.

The candidate must be a citizen of one of the Parties.

The candidate must be able to speak and write in English, and preferably in at least one of the other official languages of the Commission (Spanish or French).

Professional Experience and Knowledge

Substantial practical experience (i.e., at least 10 years) in environmental law, with considerable managerial experience. Varied legal experience in undertaking legal research and drafting complex legal opinions and possessing knowledge regarding North American environmental issues at the national and the subnational level are required, along with excellent analytical and communication skills. Strong case-management skills are a must, including a proven ability to deliver work products in a timely fashion while managing multiple complex legal files.

The successful applicant will have had professional experience in a government agency, a law firm, a nongovernmental organization, or have had judicial experience. Knowledge of international law and experience at an international organization is also highly desirable.

The ideal candidate will be expected to achieve the following;

  • Develop and maintain close working relationships with experts in environmental law, distinguished professors, and attorneys from the three Parties.
  • Administer the division’s budget and evaluate and report on progress, identifying modifications, as appropriate.
  • Provide leadership of SEM staff and resources.
  • Engage, motivate and enable SEM staff to achieve the goals and objectives of the CEC and its work program.
  • Enhance the overall capacity of the CEC Secretariat to achieve its goals through participation in the management team.
  • Assist the CEC executive director in communicating the work of the SEM division to the Parties and external stakeholders, including established public, governmental and national advisory committees, policy makers, NGOs, the business community, universities, and the media.

This position is categorized as a senior official of the CEC and the incumbent receives applicable privileges and immunities under Canada’s Foreign Mission and International Organizations Act.

The salary for this position will be determined based on professional qualifications. An employee benefits package is included.

The Commission for Environmental Cooperation promotes employment equity and encourages diversity. Please submit your resume by 21 August 2020. No phone calls or email message inquiries. Please follow the instructions and apply on-line.

Frantz Bernard
Commission for Environmental Cooperation
700 De la Gauchetière St. West, Suite 1620
Montreal, Quebec, Canada, H3B 5M2

We appreciate your interest in the CEC and wish to inform you that only short-listed candidates will be contacted. All resumes will be kept on file for a six-month period and taken into consideration for any suitable vacancies during that time.

1 The new trade agreement is referred to in Canada as CUSMA (Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement), in Mexico as T-MEC (Tratado entre México, Estados Unidos y Canadá), and in the US as USMCA (the United States, Mexico, Canada Agreement).
2 The Council is the CEC’s governing body and is composed of the highest federal-level environmental authorities (cabinet level or equivalent) from Canada, Mexico, and the United States.