Executive Director

Reporting to the Board of Directors, and working in close collaboration with its Chair, the Executive Director (ED) is responsible for the strategic and operational activities of IRRI. S/he will be responsible for overall day to day operations and management, program development and implementation and the public and donor relations of IRRI.

The Executive Director will be in charge of developing strategic orientations, ensuring the effective and sound financial management of the organisation, and promoting staff development. S/he will ensure that IRRI continuously adapts to its social, economic and political context and that its endeavours are consistent with its mission and vision. The Executive Director will also act as spokesperson for IRRI, keeping abreast of developments in refugee rights and the rights of excluded communities and working closely with local and international partners.

The ideal candidate will be a creative, visionary and courageous human rights activist with experience in the areas of refugee rights and forced migration, in addition to conflict analysis, citizenship, or preventing and responding to mass violence who has held senior positions, including leadership/management positions. S/he will have a strong grasp of international refugee rights, human rights and humanitarian law, with a deep practical experience of human rights analysis and advocacy including from the grassroots, and preferably within Africa. S/he will understand network and coalition building, including with excluded communities, and have an appreciation of how action-oriented research and new technologies can enhance capacity building for effective advocacy.

Responsibilities and Duties
Reporting to the Chair of the Board, the Executive Director is responsible for the following core areas:
1. Strategic and Programmatic Leadership
  • Monitor and analyse legal and political developments, relating to human rights and the rule of law internationally in IRRI's areas of focus and suggest goals, strategies, and objectives to the Board that ensure both appropriate institutional response and the long term sustainability and success of IRRI.
  • Oversee development and implementation of the evolving program plan to foster local regional and international strategies to change abusive laws, policies and practices.
  • Analyse and articulate IRRI’s message and role in the broader political, social and economic context. Determine funding priorities in consultation with the Board and the Senior Management Team.
  • Coordinate project development and oversee execution of program activities in collaboration with the Head of Programs.
  • Review and report regularly to the Board on overall progress and results against operating and financial objectives and address areas for improvement.
  • Keep the Board fully informed of all significant operational, physical, financial, and other matters relevant to IRRI, including legal, regulatory, and governmental policy developments.
  • Develop strategic partnerships.
2. Public Leadership
  • Ensure that effective communications and appropriate relationships are maintained with stakeholders such as donors, and business, public and civil society partners.
  • Develop/strengthen relationships with existing and new donors.
  • Represent IRRI externally, conducting advocacy with governments and inter-governmental organisations.
  • Coordinate the preparation of press releases, op-eds and other public outreach pieces, deliver public speeches and otherwise raise the public profile of IRRI.
3. Financial Oversight
  • Develop and monitor the annual operational budget, and ensure timely financial reporting to the Board, donors and relevant government authorities.
  • Ensure appropriate fiscal controls are carried out as required by donors and accepted standards and practices for NGOs.
  • Anticipate potential funding gaps, develop contingency plans, and closely monitor costs to ensure adequate cash flow and prevent uncovered program cost.
  • Supervise finance staff and the selection of auditors and audit implementation process.
4. Administrative Leadership
  • Arrange the meetings of the Board in consultation with the Chair and prepare the agenda and necessary reporting documentation for those meetings.
  • Take reasonable steps to ensure the safe, efficient operation of projects to ensure compliance with IRRI’s and donors’ policies, procedures, and practices.
  • Ensure that all operations and activities of IRRI are conducted in accordance with local laws, regulations, IRRI’s Code of Conduct, sound management practices, and the other policies and practices that may be applicable.
5. Personnel Management
  • Recruit, hire, orient and mentor professional and productive staff. Ensure staff are properly trained and performance expectations are clear. Review and adjust the organisational structure and job descriptions as needed to provide clear work expectations and adequate resources for achieving program goals.
  • Promote knowledge management and a learning environment in IRRI through leadership and personal example.
  • Conduct annual performance reviews and support staff in their ongoing professional development.
  • Ensure operating policies, procedures, and communication protocols are clear and consistent.
  • Ensure security protocols and procedures are followed and updated as needed.
6. Other Duties
  • Travel throughout Africa and internationally as required.
  • Other appropriate responsibilities as requested by the Chair of the Board.
Qualifications
Education:
  • An advanced degree in law, human rights, international relations/politics, conflict studies or a related field. A qualification in NGO management would be an asset.
Knowledge and experience
  • At least 10 years’ experience working in refugee/human rights , ideally in the areas of forced migration and conflict analysis, citizenship, and preventing and responding to mass violence, development and/or humanitarian response.
  • Minimum eight years of responsible staff, programme and financial management experience in a non-governmental organisation.
  • Applied knowledge of international refugee, human rights and humanitarian law
  • An understanding of campaigning and social justice movements, and of the functioning and relationships of key players in social change.
  • Excellent participatory leadership and management skills and a collaborative, result-oriented management style.
  • Excellent strategic thinking, process management and problem solving skills.
  • Strong analytical and organisational skills including strategy formation, process improvement and team building.
  • Proven communication, capacity building, advocacy and policy experience.
  • Proven experience of successful fundraising and financing strategies.
  • Knowledge of project planning and of log frame analysis and/or other project planning and monitoring tools.
  • Experience in dealing with a diverse Board.
  • Personal skills
  • Sound ethical and moral sense, great sensitivity towards and affinity with IRRI’s mission and values.
  • Broad and diverse professional network of contacts, ability to act as spokesperson and to communicate effectively with all levels of the organisation, including internal and external stakeholders, and to develop local, national and international partnerships.
  • Sound judgment with proven experience of dealing with hostile and complex security environment.
  • Creativity, natural curiosity and drive.
  • Adaptability to change, capacity to work under pressure and to take on several projects at once.
  • Ability to manage a diverse team effectively, balance the interests of different stakeholders, and provide excellent leadership by maintaining a constructive work environment and setting a positive example.
  • Personal and professional integrity.
To Apply
We encourage all qualified and interested applicants to submit an up-to-date CV and covering letter describing your suitability for each of the core competencies outlined in the job profile together with salary history and desired salary requirements and three professional references (including current/last employer).
Submit via email to recruitment@refugee-rights.org

IRRI provides equal opportunity and fair and equitable treatment in employment to all people without regard to race, colour, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status, or sexual orientation.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Applications must be received by 1st October, 2013 Only candidates who have been selected for an interview will be contacted.

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Executive Director
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