U.S. Department Of The Interior: Administrative Judge, Interior Board of Indian Appeals (Arlington, VA)

Job Title: Administrative Judge, Interior Board of Indian Appeals

Department: Department Of The Interior

Agency:Office of the Secretary of the Interior

Job Announcement Number:OS-12-SL-MM672318


$119,554.00 to $165,300.00 / Per Year


Thursday, May 24, 2012 to Friday, June 15, 2012




Full Time – Permanent


1 vacancy(s) – Arlington, VA United StatesView Map


United States Citizens


 Are you interested in joining -
–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:

* Conducts government-to-government relations with 566 federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native tribes and provides supporting services to those tribes and their members.
* Serves as trustee of over 55 million surface acres and 57 million acres of subsurface estates, and related natural resources, owned by Indian tribes or individual Indians.
* 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.


  • 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 in good standing is required.
  • Applicants must separately address the Mandatory Qualifications.


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

The incumbent of this position serves as an Administrative Judge on the Interior Board of Indian Appeals (IBIA), part of the Department’s Office of Hearings and Appeals.  The Board 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 decision of Departmental officials involving Indian matters.

The Board exercises independent review authority over decisions of the Bureau of Indian Affairs and other Departmental officials arising from the Department’s relationship with individual Indians and Indian tribes.  The Board 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 Board considers and decides any other matter pertaining to Indian affairs which may be specially referred to it by the Secretary or the Director, Office of Hearings and Appeals.

As a member of the IBIA, the incumbent is an authorized representative of the Secretary for the purpose of reviewing and determining appeals where a right of appeal is provided in regulations.  The incumbent will prepare appellate decisions in Indian cases involving a wide variety of statutes and regulations pertaining to Indian law.



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 demonstrates 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.

Each applicant is required to submit a comprehensive narrative statement addressing each mandatory qualifications individually.  The narrative must demonstrate the necessary level of skills, characteristics, qualities, specialized knowledge, and technical competence that would indicate successful performance in this Senior Level position.  This evidence must include clear and concise examples that emphasize the applicant’s level of responsibilities, scope, and complexity of assignments, program accomplishments, policy initiatives, and level of contacts.  Applicants who fail to provide this narrative statement in the format requested will not be considered.  EACH MANDATORY QUALIFICATION MUST BE ADDRESSED SEPARATELY and must not exceed two pages each.  IF YOU EXCEED THIS LIMIT, YOU WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED. 


1.  Broad legal knowledge and understanding of Indian law and administrative law, including relevant statutes, regulations, and case law, and demonstrated ability to quickly develop a specialized knowledge of unfamiliar substantive areas.

2.  Superior interpersonal skills in communication, negotiation, and consensus building that have been used in high-level consultative or collaborative situations.

3.  Superior ability to write clearly, concisely, and persuasively, for a broad audience that includes persons with and without legal training or experience.

4.  Superior skills in managing a significant caseload, analyzing and synthesizing voluminous and technically complex evidentiary materials, and researching, considering, and correctly applying case law to decide cases.

5.  Superior ability to provide effective direction and project oversight to other in achieving organizational goals and objectives. 


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

Veterans’ Preference: If you are entitled to veterans’ preference, you should indicate the type of veterans’ preference you are claiming on your résumé.  Your veterans’ preference entitlement will be verified by the employing agency.

  • For 5-point veterans’ preference, please provide your DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty), official statement of service from your command if you are currently on active duty, or other official documentation (e.g., copy of military orders, campaign documents as: or expeditionary award citation, etc.) that proves your military service was performed under honorable conditions.
  • For 10-point veterans’ preference, you must submit a Standard Form (SF) 15Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference and all other required documentation.



Pay is only part of the compensation you will earn working for the Federal Government. We offer a broad array of benefits programs and family friendly flexibilities to meet the needs of you and your family. Here are some highlights. Look for additional information along with links to pages that spell out the details below at http://www.opm.gov/retire/retire_jobseekers.asp.

  • Our health insurance program is a nationally recognized model that offers you choice and flexibility along with a substantial employer contribution to premiums. And you can pay your share of premiums as well as your out-of-pocket costs with pre-tax dollars.
  • Our leave policy provides ample time off to take care of your personal, your recreational and your health care needs. In addition to 10 paid holidays every year, you will accumulate 13 days of sick leave each year along with 26 vacation days.

In addition to these programs that we know will be of interest to you right now, the Federal Government recognizes the need for income replacement and income support benefits down the road.

  • Our 3-part retirement program includes a social security benefit, a 401(k) type plan, and a defined benefit component based on years of employment and salary history.
  • In addition to retiree health insurance benefits under the Federal Employees Health Benefit Program, you also will be eligible for Medicare.
  • You will be able to choose among several options for life insurance coverage for both you and your family members.
  • We offer the largest group long-term care insurance program in the country. As a new employee, you may be eligible to enroll by answering just a few simple questions. And you can tailor your benefits package to your own needs.


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.


Your complete application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (ET) on Friday, June 15, 2012

Note for certain applicants:

Effective January 1, 2010, OPM must authorize any employment offers we make to current or former (within the last 5 years) political Schedule A, Schedule C, or Non-career SES (political) employees in the executive branch.  If you are currently, or have been within the last 5 years, a political Schedule A, Schedule C, or Non-career SES employee in the executive branch, you must disclose that to the Human Resources Office.

For all applicants:

To apply for this position, you must provide a complete application package which includes:

1.  REQUIRED Your resume – it must contain information sufficient to make a valid determination that you fully meet the specialized experience requirements as stated in this vacancy announcement.  Insufficient information will result in a not qualified rating.  It is recommended that you include the following information:

- Full name, mailing address, and day and evening telephone numbers
- Educational information, including the name, city and state of colleges or universities you attended, as well as the type and year of any degrees received
- Information about your paid and nonpaid work experience related to this position including:
**Job title (include series and grade if Federal job)
**Duties and accomplishments
**Employer’s name and address
**Supervisor’s name and phone number
**Starting and ending dates of employment (month and year)
**Indicate if we may contact your current supervisor
**Information about honors, awards, and special accomplishments

2.  REQUIRED A narrative statement addressing each of the Mandatory Qualifications – experience (paid and unpaid), education, training, awards, and/or self-development activities as related to each.  Each Mandatory Qualification must be addressed separately.  Narrative statements must not exceed 2 pages for each individual Mandatory Qualification.  IF YOU EXCEED THESE LIMITS, YOU WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED.

3.  REQUIRED Proof of J.D. or LL.B. degree and current Bar membership that is in good standing.

4.  REQUIRED If you are a current Federal employee, a copy of a recent SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action, that indicates Federal status, grade, tenure, and type of service.  Please redact your social security number and date of birth.

5. REQUIRED IF APPLICABLE  If you wish to have your status as a veteran considered, you must submit the appropriate documentation, such as a DD-214, SF-15 with appropriate supporting documentation and/or your last official statement from the Department of Veteran’s Affairs, if you have a service connected disability.

6.  HIGHLY RECOMMENDED A copy of your most recent annual performance appraisal (from either the Federal or private sector).  Please remove your social security number.

7.  HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Candidates are requested to complete the DI-1935, Applicant Background Survey, on a voluntary basis.  Information will be used solely to review compliance with Federal law.  Failure to complete this form will not affect consideration.  The form can be found online at http://www.doi.gov/diversity/di1935.htm.

To begin, click the Apply Online button near the bottom (or right) of this screen and follow the prompts to register, answer a few questions, and submit all required documents.  To return to your saved application, log in to your USAJOBS account at http://www.usajobs.opm.gov and click on “My Applications”.  Click on the position title, and then select Apply Online to continue.

We strongly encourage you to apply online: http://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/317614100.  If you cannot apply online, you may FAX your resume, narrative statement and other supporting documents to 1-478-757-3144 and use the official FAX coversheet found here http://staffing.opm.gov/pdf/usascover.pdf



Executive Applications
Phone: (202)208-6702
Agency Information:
Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement
Division of Human Resources
381 Elden Street
MS 2400
Herndon, VA


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.  You will be notified of the outcome after completion of the selection process