Humanitarian & DRR Program Director

The Nature Conservancy (TNC)
Arlington, VA, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
NGO/Civil Society
Experience Level: 
5-7 Years
Degree Required: 
Bachelor's (Or Equivalent)


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Founded in 1951, the Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable.  One of our core values is our commitment to diversity. Therefore, we strive for a globally diverse and culturally competent workforce. Working in 72 countries, including all 50 United States, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit or follow @nature_press on Twitter.
The Nature Conservancy offers competitive compensation, 401k or savings-plan matching for eligible employees, excellent benefits, flexible work policies and a collaborative work environment. We also provide professional development opportunities and promote from within. As a result, you will find a culture that supports and inspires conservation achievement and personal development, both within the workplace and beyond.




The Coastal Risk and Resilience (CRR) Team leads a cutting-edge program that aims to conserve and restore coastal habitats for the protection they provide to people against the physical impacts of severe weather and climate change. The CRR team develops and applies innovative coastal resilience approaches, science and tools, including the use of insurance, risk modeling and community vulnerability assessments, to enhance the design, financing and implementation of nature-based solutions to coastal risk. Key partners include international and U.S. government agencies, academia and other NGO’s working in coastal resilience and climate risk, members of the insurance industry and other private sector organizations, and humanitarian organizations such as the International Federation of the Red Cross/Red Crescent and others. 
The Humanitarian and Disaster Risk Reduction Program Director oversees TNC’s engagement with the humanitarian and disaster risk reduction (DRR) sector as well as our work with coastal communities. This position supports The Nature Conservancy’s Oceans team and regional units by building strategic, scientific, and technical capacity in the field and managing key partnerships to advance nature-based solutions to coastal risk. This position reports directly to the Director of Global Coastal Risk & Resilience and will be based in our World Office in Arlington, VA. Qualified applicants must provide proof of eligibility to work in the U.S. 




The Humanitarian and Disaster Risk Reduction Program Director provides strategic leadership and management, expertise, fundraising support and donor identification and conservation service delivery and works closely with the global, regional and field teams and within the CRR team. S/he may lead teams/projects in non-reporting relationships. The Director leads or oversees the implementation of key projects and manages key partnerships and serves as the principal contact with humanitarian, development and DRR sectors and other relevant organizations, specifically, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Cross country societies. S/he is experienced in managing public/US Government and private donor organizations and the projects they fund. S/he represents TNC at relevant conferences and policy fora and may serve as a principal contact to other conservation organizations, foundations, strategic partners and/or the academic community. The Director will work with existing CRR project teams in key geographies and supervise staff as needed. S/he establishes the Conservancy as a major conservation partner within this area, defines priorities, leads and manages team(s) which supports and improves conservation efforts, and builds strategic, scientific, and technical capacity in the field. 




  • Build, lead and implement TNC’s nature-based humanitarian and disaster risk reduction strategy.
  • Liaise with the CRR and other Field Teams to maximize success.
  • Global, regional and local level focus on providing strategic leadership and support to launch new projects, programs and initiatives.
  • Manages projects that may be complex involving multiple partners, funders and geographies.  Leads project/s funded by US government agencies.
  • Build and utilize high performing partnerships to achieve strategy goals and metrics.
  • Mentors teams and individuals to improve the Conservancy’s strategies and impact.
  • Prepares funding and strategy proposals, presentations and/or strategic work plans.
  • Advances technology as part of reaching our humanitarian and development goals.
  • Makes independent strategic decisions frequently based on analysis, ambiguous information, experience and context.
  • May require frequent travel domestically and/or internationally and evening and weekend hours.
  • May work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain, and under physically demanding circumstances.




  • BA/BS degree and 7 years’ experience in humanitarian and disaster risk reduction field or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Fundraising experience, including identifying donor prospects and donor cultivation.
  • Experience managing complex or multiple projects, including publicly funded projects, managing finances and coordinating the work of other professionals and partners.
  • Supervisory experience, including motivating, leading, setting objectives and managing performance.
  • Experience in partnership development with non-profit partners, community groups, corporations and/or government agencies.
  • Experience negotiating.


  • Multi-lingual and multi-cultural or cross-cultural experience appreciated.
  • 7-10 years’ experience in conservation practice or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • A strong network with the International Federation of the Red Cross/Red Crescent.
  • Experience conceiving and implementing strategic and creative initiatives.
  • Management and leadership experience at a humanitarian organization.
  • Demonstrated experience influencing, developing and implementing conservation policy and plans.
  • Knowledge of current trends and practices in CRR, DRR and with the humanitarian sector.
  • Global network of relevant people and organizations, particularly in TNC key countries of operation.
  • Experience developing practical applications of field and service delivery concepts and technical innovations for conservation purposes.
  • Communicating clearly via written, spoken, and graphical means in English and other relevant languages.
  • Demonstrated leadership and visionary qualities and ability to work effectively with and through others in a decentralized and geographically dispersed organization.
  • Politically savvy and experienced in partnership development with non-profit partners, community groups, private sector companies and/or government agencies.




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