The Ford Foundation, created in 1936, is a US-based philanthropic organization and private international donor focusing on social justice.
It has ten offices across the world in Africa, Asia and Latin America, as well as in the US. The Director oversees the Foundation’s activities in West Africa providing overall leadership to the Foundation’s strategy and grant making programs, managing the office and team in Lagos, and representing the Foundation to government, business, nonprofit leaders, the media and the donor community.
The Director reports to the Vice President for International Programs.
The Director is the Foundation’s ambassador in the region to many important constituencies. Specifically, the Director assesses local political, social, cultural and economic developments and helps shape the Foundation’s strategy in the region and guides its programming and grant-making priorities in alignment with the Foundation’s mission, values and goals.
and promotes a collaborative working environment in the office and across areas of expertise that maximize the diverse backgrounds, perspectives and skills of staff to accomplish Foundation goals.
The Director manages, coaches, galvanizes and works closely with a small team of program staff in developing, monitoring and evaluating integrated grant programs and projects in support of regional goals.
The Foundation’s programs in West Africa strive to confront exclusion and expand justice to ensure all people are able to participate in a democracy in which underrepresented groups see their rights protected, and the advantages of progress are available to all.
The work of the West Africa office specifically focuses on Gender Racial and Ethnic Justice (GREJ), in particular addressing gender based violence, and Natural Resources and Climate Change (NRCC) focusing on the governance of natural resources and ensuring the benefits of its extraction are extended to the poor and marginalized.
The Director will ensure the grants and activities supported under its GREJ and NRCC programs in West Africa contribute to this goal.
The Director also partners with Ford’s International Program Directors for GREJ and NRCC to ensure the grant making in West Africa is aligned with the larger global vision for these two areas.
The Director maintains effective ties and promotes strategic partnerships with local leaders, governmental agencies and non-governmental organizations, the media and other donors to leverage new resources, scale impact, and advance the goals of the office.
The Director also collaborates with staff in the Foundation’s New York headquarters to oversee all workforce needs and legal matters, ensures that the Foundation complies with all relevant local laws and statutory obligations in a timely manner, maintains constructive working relations with government.
Additionally, the Director manages the office’s $10 million annual grant budget and an additional $4 million in funding to strengthen institutions and networks.
They also prepare and manage an administrative budget and staff with responsibilities for accounting, grants administration and general services functions.
The Director also works closely with senior management staff from around the world, including Regional and Program Directors from Ford’s offices in 11 countries in helping shape and integrate various aspects of the Foundation’s work regionally and globally.
Primary Duties and Responsibilities
Specifically, the Director will :
Be accountable to Ford Foundation senior leadership and through them to the Foundation’s Board of Trustees for implementation of the West Africa office strategy, and in communicating progress to them.
Assess local political, social, cultural and economic developments and help shape the Foundation’s strategy in the region and guide its programming and grant-making priorities in alignment with the Foundation’s mission and values and the goals of the International GREJ and NRCC programs.
Provide intellectual leadership inside and outside the Foundation.
Represent the Foundation externally; and, initiate / foster strategic partnerships collaborating broadly with international scholars and practitioners, government agencies, non-governmental organizations, the private sector and other donors on issues of common program concern.
Lead / conduct annual reviews of strategy and propose changes to ensure greatest impact
establishing annual performance delivery goals for the team and direct reports; and planning and implementing talent management strategies.
Prepare and manage the West Africa office annual grant and administrative budget.
Incorporate a rights-based and gender focus in the work and advance initiatives focused on youth and people with disabilities.
Establish learning goals for the West Africa team, including working with Ford strategy and learning colleagues to build a monitoring framework to assess impact and synthesize learning.
Communicate with the team, senior Foundation leadership and external partners clearly and consistently in a transparent, timely and respectful manner, and enabling them to be strategic and achieve impact.
CRITERIA FOR SUCCESS :
A passion for social justice and reducing inequality as well as commitment to Ford’s mission and core values of equity and fairness, diversity, voice and participation, knowledge and creativity, humility and respect, and honesty and integrity.
REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS :
The successful candidate will have the following minimum qualifications and experience :
A graduate level degree in a relevant field of study or BA and equivalent experience
10+ years of experience leading strategies, people and teams
Ability to travel extensively on behalf of the Foundation
Creativity, energy and non-traditional thinking capacity
Written and oral fluency in English.
LOCATION : Lagos, Nigeria
PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS / TRAVEL :
This position is primarily a sedentary role. However, the person in this position may need to occasionally move about inside the office to liaise with internal staff, access files, office machinery and a copy machine / printer.
Additionally, domestic / international travel will be expected, approximately 25% ; some travel is directly related to grantmaking, but also to attend team conferences, retreats and meetings and may occasionally include travel to rural or remote places with difficult conditions.
The Ford Foundation is committed to providing access, equal opportunity and reasonable accommodation for individuals with disabilities in employment, its programs, and operations.
As part of this commitment, the Foundation will ensure that persons with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodations.
If a reasonable accommodation is needed to participate in the job application process, please contact talentacquisitionhr fordfoundation.
org or call (212) 573-4627.
Start Date : First Quarter 2021 (preferred).
Alignment to Culture and Values
born into family or adopted)