Food and Freshwater Systems Lead

The Nature Conservancy (TNC)

São Paulo, Brazil 🇧🇷

Job ID: 52736

Location: Brazil

Full/Part Time: Full-Time

Regular/Temporary: Regular


São Paulo, Brasil


The mission of The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is to conserve the lands and waters upon which all life depends. As a science-based organization, we develop innovative, on-the-ground solutions to the world’s toughest environmental challenges so that people and nature can thrive. Our work is guided by our values, which include a commitment to diversity and respect for people, communities, and cultures. From a rewarding mission to career development and flexible schedules, there are many reasons to love life #insideTNC. Want to know more? Check out our TNC Talent playlist on YouTube   to hear stories from staff or visit  Glassdoor.

One of TNC’s primary goals is to cultivate an inclusive work environment so that employees around the globe have a sense of belonging and feel that their unique contributions are valued. We know we’ll only achieve our mission by hiring and engaging a diverse staff that reflects the communities in which we work. Recognizing that people bring talent and skills that have been developed outside the scope of a job, we take a holistic approach to recruitment that considers life experience in addition to the professional requirements listed in our postings. Please apply – we’d love to hear from you. To quote a popular saying at TNC, “you’ll join for the mission, and you’ll stay for the people.”


The Food and Freshwater Systems Lead is responsible for designing, planning, oversighting, and supporting the implementation of the Freshwater and Regenerative Agriculture Strategies in the Brazil BU. The position will lead a diverse team of specialists, that in partnership with the Science and Policy teams, will build the transformative theory of change, KPI’s, and programmatic planning to a tiered implementation approach at Local, National and Regional/Global levels. She/He will guide and support the Conservancy’s conservation work in the Iconic Places, in close coordination with national, regional, and global conservation priorities and major initiatives. This function will report to the Brazil Conservation Director. 


The Food and Freshwater Systems Lead will establish the Conservancy as a driver of system transformation, innovation and a reference regarding the role of nature-based solutions and sustainable agriculture in protecting nature in Brazil.  S/he will provide servant leadership for the multi-functional teams that will deliver conservation outcomes in the Iconic Places with appropriate levers to drive impact at scale, in close coordination with Iconic Place Directors and other Conservation Strategy Leads. S/he may play a leading role in donor identification, cultivation, and stewardship for the Water and Agri Strategies and Iconic Places. The Food and Freshwater Systems Lead disseminates best practices, provides training and analyses to best implement organizational measures of success, and develop key partnerships with public & private organizations in order to identify and resolve technical issues and to widely communicate solutions, innovative scientific methods, analysis, tools and frameworks to address the natural system needs. S/he establishes the Conservancy as a major conservation partner within the water, food production and agriculture contexts, define conservation priorities, guides team(s) which supports and improves conservation efforts, and builds strategic, scientific, and technical capacity in the field. S/he engages local community support for local conservation efforts, negotiate complex and innovative solutions with government agencies and landowners to conserve and protect natural communities, and develop and implement conservation strategies. The Food and Freshwater Systems Lead will build and manage technical capacity in close coordination with policy and science teams to provide guidance to conservation implementation teams. The Food and Freshwater Systems Lead will work closely with the marketing team to support effective communication of the strategies and their implementation at scale and may be a key media spokesperson. 

Responsibilities and scope include
•    Proactively follow and promote our Code of Conduct both internally and externally, continuously and consistently demonstrating alignment with our values.
•    Lead the Brazil Freshwater and Regenerative Agriculture strategies, coordinating the necessary support from other Conservation Strategies, Marketing, Science, Policy and Development teams under the guidance of the Brazil Conservation Director. 
•    Build the theory of change for the Water and Agri Strategies, in close coordination with the Iconic Place Directors, to support the delivery of effective impact in the Landscapes (Tier 1) and through leverage (Tier 2 and 3) approaches, incorporating and contributing with regional and global teams.
•    Ensure the Water and Agri Strategies are efficiently described, reported on and adaptively managed internally through the conservation hub and related processes including supporting Science in the definition, monitoring and evaluation of management and impact indicators.
•    Lead by influence the staff responsible to deliver impact in the Landscapes contributing to adaptive management through the strategy team’s participation in monthly meetings and in response to specific requests.
•    Recruit, retain and manage high quality and effective multi-disciplinary staff with responsibility for their performance management, training and career development. 
•    Manages for leveraging across differences
•    Cultivate and develops constructive and effective relationships and liaison inside and outside the Conservancy.
•    Communicate professionally with a wide variety of people of diverse cultural professional and economic backgrounds for the purpose of developing, negotiating and/or implementing programs and projects.
•    Works closely with the marketing team acts as lead spokesperson for Water and Agri thematics including presenting and representing the program and TNC’s vision in a compelling, engaging manner to internal and external audiences including media
•    Ensure the strategy team connect with Freshwater and Agriculture best practices across TNC, across Brazil and internationally to ensure the Brazil program is effective and innovative and contributes its experience to other interested parties.
•    May require frequent travel domestically and/or internationally.
•    Direct, prepare, present and/or participates in negotiations of project proposals with governmental, bilateral and/or multilateral agencies. 
•    Work well in complex environments, demonstrating resilience.
•    Decisions may affect organization’s public image.
•    TNC has an occupational safety policy that aims to protect employees, partners and the communities where it operates and serves. COVID-19 vaccine is a minimum requirement for all positions. Where applicable, as far as possible.


•    Bachelor’s degree and experience as a leader in the conservation arena, with special focus on the Water and Agriculture contexts in the non-profit sector.
•    Fundraising experience, including identifying donor prospects and donor cultivation.
•    Experience directing a major program or project of strategic importance, including management/supervision of multi-disciplinary teams and meeting deadlines.
•    Experience in dealing with private sector, non-government, agribusiness community and community-based organizations and public authorities.
•    Supervisory experience, including motivating, leading, setting objectives and managing performance.                                 
•    Experience negotiating.                                                
•    Experience influencing, developing and implementing conservation policy and plans at the state or country level. 
•    Experience with financial management of a large program.
•    Portuguese and English fluent verbal and written skills.
•    Well organized and self-directed; politically savvy and a team player
•    An effective servant leader that distributes leadership through the team
•    Experience communicating with and presenting to diverse audiences including donors, board members, employees, outside partners, or equivalent.
•    Experience with communicating through diverse media channels

•    Professional experience, including proven experience effectively leading environmental and conservation issues, in large and complex programs and with measurable results in Brasil in non-governmental, private or public organizations.
•    Experience in implementing a systemic approach to complex problems: Thinks and acts from a broad perspective with a long-term view and an understanding of 1) the dynamic nature of large-scale challenges and 2) the need for integrating five key practices: skillfully engaging appropriate people; providing a clear process for change; taking a holistic view of situations; focusing on a small number of strategic actions, while learning from and adapting them over time; and being aware of how one’s own thinking or patterns of behavior may be limiting change.
•    High energy, forward thinking, creative individual with high ethical standards.
•    Proven managerial talent in budgeting, staffing, and performance management.
•    Proven technical skills, analytical ability, good judgment, and strong operational focus.  
•    Superb communication and presentation skills required.
•    Ability to make wise and timely decisions.
•    Successful experience in marketing or fund raising desired.  
•    Multi- lingual and multi-cultural or cross-cultural experience appreciated.


Since 1951, TNC has been doing work you can believe in. Through grassroots action, we have grown from a small non-profit into one of the most effective and wide-reaching environmental organizations in the world. Thanks to more than 1 million members, over 400 scientists, and the dedicated efforts of our diverse staff and partners, we impact conservation around the world! 

TNC offers competitive and comprehensive benefits packages tailored to the individual countries where we work. These may include health care benefits, retirement benefits, parental leave, paid time off, life insurance, and disability coverage as well as an employee assistance program and other life and well-being benefits. Learn more about our benefits on our Culture Tab on 

We’re proud to offer a flexible work environment that supports the health and well-being of the people we employ.


To apply for job ID 52736, submit your materials online by using the Apply Now button at by 11:59 PM EST on January 4th, 2022. Need help applying? Visit our recruitment page or contact

The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs and culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.

Do you have military experience? Visit our U.S. Military Skills Translator to match your military experience with our current job openings!

TNC is committed to offering accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application process. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, please send a note to with Request for Accommodation in the subject line.

Where legally permissible, TNC requires all new employees to be fully vaccinated and willing to keep up to date with vaccines that protect against COVID-19.   By accepting an offer of employment, you agree to comply with this requirement, unless you are entitled to a legally mandated exemption.

An attractive salary and benefits package is part of TNC’s value proposition to our employees. TNC strives to provide competitive pay and bases salaries on the geographic location of the role committing to being equitable across groups and providing hiring salary ranges when possible.

Since we support flexible and remote work for our employees, many positions have a flexible location within countries where we’re registered as a Non-government Organization and established as an employer. This may mean we’re unable to provide a hiring salary range in the posting for some of our positions. However, candidates invited to be part of our interview process will be provided their location specific range upon request.






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