Deputy General Counsel

Department of Fire Services - added 3 weeks ago


The Department of Fire Services’ Office of General Counsel is seeking to hire a Deputy General Counsel to provide legal support to the agency and its divisions.  The Deputy General Counsel will report to and work under the direction of the General Counsel who advises the State Fire Marshal, Deputy State Fire Marshal and DFS Division Directors relative to legal matters which impact their function.

The Department of Fire Services (DFS) provides training for firefighters, fire prevention, fire code enforcement, education to the general public, hazardous materials and emergency response and oversees fire investigations through the Office of the State Fire Marshal. We support the fire service in the protection of life and property, promote and enhance firefighter safety, and provide fire service leadership through policy and legislation.

Legal support provided by the General Counsel’s Office and the Deputy General Counsel consists, in general, but is not limited to:

  • Providing legal guidance for DFS related Boards and/or Commissions including: The Board of Fire Prevention Regulations; the Fire Prevention Regulations Appeals Board; Hazardous Materials Mitigation Emergency Release Response Advisory Board; Massachusetts Fire Service Commission; Massachusetts Fire Safety Commission and Automatic Sprinkler Appeals Board; Massachusetts Fire Training Council; the Board of Boiler Rules; and the Technical Rescue Coordinating Council.
  • Assisting Board members in carrying out functions, including the drafting of written adjudicatory decisions, legal interpretations, regulations for adoption and coordination of Board/Commission actions in accordance with the strict requirements of M.G.L. c. 30A, relative to open meeting laws, regulatory promulgation, adjudications and hearings.
  • Conducting administrative appeals of determinations of the head of the fire department based upon the Mass. Comprehensive Fire Safety Code, Automatic Sprinkler Appeals Board and the Board of Boiler Rules.  Also facilitates and coordinates administrative hearings and other adjudicatory activities associated with 14 different types of licenses/certifications issued by the State Fire Marshal.
  • Developing policy and drafting legal interpretations and regulations for adoption and promulgation into the Code of Massachusetts Regulations (CMR’s).
  • Assisting in rendering informal opinions and advice to municipal fire departments throughout the state relative to fire laws and regulations.  Provides informal opinions and advice to DFS staff and its divisions regarding administrative laws, open meeting law, public records law, records retention, CORI laws and ethical considerations. 
  • Advising Department managers and supervisors on issues regarding employment/labor law. Regularly reviewing new and existing Department policies and procedures and recommend changes regarding employee/labor law issues. In addition, reviewing and assisting with all personnel investigations, disciplinary actions and/or corrective action plans for employees.
  • Jointly responsible with the General Counsel for the processing of and response to all public records requests and subpoenas in accordance with applicable laws and regulations.
  • Conducting legal research, prepares legal briefs, memoranda of law, assembling and organizing supportive documentation as well as engaging in negotiations with the parties for all tort claims filed against the Department under the Massachusetts Tort Claims Act, MGL Ch. 258.
  • Reviewing and/or drafting proposed legislation that impacts areas within the scope of Department of Fire Services’ functions or the Massachusetts fire service

Preferred Qualifications

  • The successful candidate will have some or all of the following:
  • A graduate of an accredited law school.
  • A member for five (5) years in good standing with the Massachusetts Bar.
  • Knowledge of M.G.L. Chapter 148 (Massachusetts Fire Safety Laws); M.G.L. Chapter 30A (State Administrative Procedures Act); M.G.L. Chapter 66 Section 10 (Public Records Law); M.G.L. Chapter 268A (State Ethics Laws) and 527 CMR 1.00 (Massachusetts State Fire Code).
  • Ability to communicate in a professional, diplomatic manner, respecting the varied views and opinions of Board members, other government personnel and members of the general public
  • Ability to conduct public hearings
  • Ability to draft laws, codified regulations and policies
  • Ability to develop and conduct training
  • Ability to supervise and manage an office
  • Ability to write and defend appeal decisions
  • Knowledge of legal research methods
  • Knowledge of theory, principles and practices of law
  • Knowledge of terminology, symbols and standard abbreviations used in legal practice
  • Knowledge of investigative techniques and procedures
  • Knowledge of general and technical report writing




Applicants must have at least (A) five (5) years of full-time or, equivalent part-time, professional, administrative, supervisory, or managerial experience in a particular specialty (i.e. scientific, professional, or technical) and must possess current license and/or registration requirements established for the performance of the position, of which (B) at least one (1) year must have been in a project management, supervisory or managerial capacity or (C) any equivalent combination of the required experience and substitutions below.



I. A certificate in a relevant or related field may be substituted for one (1) year of the required (A) experience.

II. A Bachelor’s degree in a related field may be substituted for two (2) years of the required (A) experience.

III. A Graduate degree in a related field may be substituted for three (3) years of the (A) required experience.

IV. A Doctorate degree in a related field may be substituted for four (4) years of the (A) required experience.


Comprehensive Benefits

When you embark on a career with the Commonwealth, you are offered an outstanding suite of employee benefits that add to the overall value of your compensation package. We take pride in providing a work experience that supports you, your loved ones, and your future.

Want the specifics? Explore our Employee Benefits and Rewards!

The primary work location for this role will be at the DFS Stow MA campus.   Where appropriate, DFS offers a hybrid work model, consisting of in-office and telework to further enhance the work/life balance of its employees.  The successful candidate would be required to work primarily on site during initial training and orientation period before telework may be offered and/or for certain positions, telework may not be appropriate.


Executive Order #595: As a condition of employment, successful applicants will be required to have received COVID-19 vaccination or an approved exemption as of their start date. Details relating to demonstrating compliance with this requirement will be provided to applicants selected for employment. Applicants who receive an offer of employment who can provide documentation that the vaccine is medically contraindicated or who object to vaccination due to a sincerely held religious belief may make a request for exemption.

An Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action Employer.  Females, minorities, veterans, and persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

The Commonwealth is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, disability, national origin, veteran status, or any other basis covered by appropriate law.  Research suggests that qualified women, Black, Indigenous, and Persons of Color (BIPOC) may self-select out of opportunities if they don't meet 100% of the job requirements.  We encourage individuals who believe they have the skills necessary to thrive to apply for this role.


Official Title: Program Manager Specialist VI

Primary Location: United States-Massachusetts-Stow-State Road

Job: Legal Services

Agency: Department of Fire Services

Schedule: Full-time

Shift: Day

Job Posting: Jan 6, 2023, 11:58:57 AM

Number of Openings: 1

Salary: 81,529.95 - 115,000.00 Yearly

If you have Diversity, Affirmative Action or Equal Employment Opportunity questions or need a Reasonable Accommodation, please contact Diversity Officer / ADA Coordinator: Mary Travers - 9785673145

Bargaining Unit: M99-Managers (EXE)

Confidential: No

Hybrid Work Eligible: Yes