Portfolio Manager (South Asia)


Kansas City, MO, United States 🇺🇸

About Water.org

844 million people – about one in nine – lack access to safe water. 2.3 billion people don’t have access to a toilet. We are working every day to change this. We are Water.org. We’re here to bring water and sanitation to the world. We want to make it safe, accessible and cost-effective because we believe that water is the way to empowering a better life that we can all share in, worldwide. We are an international nonprofit organization based in Kansas City, Missouri that has positively transformed millions of lives around the world through access to safe water and sanitation. Founded by Gary White and Matt Damon, we have been pioneering market-driven financial solutions to the global water crisis for more than 25 years, giving women hope, children health and communities a future.


Joining the South Asia team at a critical inflection point for both water and sanitation solutions, the Portfolio Manager will be responsible for overseeing and supporting existing programs and engagements in-country while also helping create new solutions, channels and partnerships (both financial and non-financial) which help us to address the challenge more effectively and efficiently.   The Portfolio Manager will also execute initiatives funded by major donors, assist in exploring new geographies, develop an ongoing pipeline of new projects, including in emerging areas such as digital finance, and participate in evaluation, learning, and capacity development activities. This full-time position will be based in Kansas City, MO (headquarters).

The Portfolio Manager will report to the Senior Regional Manager of South Asia and work closely with the regional staff in countries with Water.org programs. He/she will also work closely with other members of the Water.org International Programs team and other US-based teams.

The ideal candidate for this position will possess business experience in one or more of the following: development finance, frontier/emerging markets, social enterprise development, supply chain development for water supply and sanitation in addition to the following skills and qualifications.

Key responsibilities

Manage and monitor Water.org programs and engagements implemented with local partner organizations (financial institutions and water/sanitation service providers)
  • Oversee implementation of programs/engagements in collaboration with local country office staff, including delivery of funding, technical assistance and strategic and tactical support. 
  • Develop and manage contracts with and provide support to consultants hired to supplement Water.org’s programmatic work.
  • Ensure optimal operational and financial performance of on-going programs through a combination of in-country support, monitoring, and technical assistance to address implementation challenges.
  • Maintain databases and track partners’ WaterCredit loan performance and financial expenditure on a regular basis.
  • In collaboration with international staff, ensure execution of in-country program monitoring visits of partner organizations.
Execute and manage agreements with institutional donors
  • Assist in research and proposal writing to institutional donors, and support foundation requests.
  • Facilitate execution of overall initiative and program/engagement-specific deliverables.
  • Oversee initiative revenues, expenditures, and budgets in collaboration with Finance team.
  • Write technical, financial, and narrative progress reports.
  • Respond to requests and serve as program knowledge base externally for donors and internally for the Development team.
  • Assist in the organization of donor visits to countries, working closely with international staff to develop visit itineraries and arrange logistics.
Support development of new programs and initiatives
  • Assist in identification and certification of new partner organizations, including financial and non-financial institutions and social enterprises.
  • Help support in-country teams in their wider stakeholder engagement and advocacy efforts in the region with local government and non-government, international and multilateral actors.
  • Solicit and evaluate new program proposals from partner organizations.
  • Support the design and launch new partnerships and models in conjunction with regional office staff and local partners, including supporting project management, designing program goals, budgets, activities, and deliverables.
  • Contribute to development of new partnership models and innovative approaches to delivering financing solutions to those at the Base of the Pyramid.
Assist in exploring new geographies and types of partnerships as needed
  • Support geographic and channel-specific (including digital) market assessments executed in conjunction with third Parties.
  • Provide input into development of new strategies and approaches for new geographies and types of partnerships in collaboration with other International Programs team members. 
  • Help design and pilot new models to support the development of new programs and initiatives.
Participate in evaluation, learning, and capacity development activities
  • Support capacity development activities pertaining to partner organizations and internally within Water.org.
  • Facilitate evaluation-related activities of programs/engagements in conjunction with the International Programs regional staff, Monitoring & Evaluation team, and third-party Consultants.
  • Assist in the organization of WaterCredit forums/stakeholder engagement forums and partners meetings in order to share knowledge and collaborate with stakeholders.
  • Provide input into and facilitate learning/dissemination of Water.org and partners’ implementation experience and best practices.
Other key activities
  • Serve as a knowledge base for Water.org, and represent Water.org at public events and in written publications to advance Water.org’s mission.
  • Collaborate with the Development, Finance, Marketing, and Office of the CEO teams on projects as required.
Management Responsibility
  • Individual contributor with no subordinates.

This description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required. Some duties, responsibilities and activities may change or be assigned at any time with or without notice.

Skills and competencies

  • Customer Focus – Building strong customer relationships and delivering customer-centric solutions.
  • Nimble Learning – Actively learning through experimentation when talking new problems, using both successes and failures as learning fodder.
  • Drives Results – Consistently achieving results, even under tough circumstances.
  • Collaborates – Building partnerships and working collaboratively with others to meet shared objectives.
  • Self-development – Actively seeking new ways to grow and be challenged using other formal and informal development channels.
  • Optimize Work Processes – Knowing the most effective and efficient processes to get things done, with a focus on continuous improvement.
  • Manages Ambiguity – Manages ambiguity by operating effectively, even when things are not certain or the way forward is not clear.
  • Instills Trust – Gaining the confidence and trust of others through honesty, integrity, and authenticity.
  • Financial Stewardship – Demonstrates fiscally responsible decision making as applicable to one’s role.
  • Strategic Mindset – Seeing ahead to future possibilities and translating them into breakthrough strategies.
  • Sectoral Knowledge – Sound and up-to-date knowledge of concepts, methodologies and techniques including demonstrated expertise in at least one specialty area within finance, Water and Sanitation Solutions, Water and Sanitation supply chain development, and/or social enterprise development.


  • Master’s degree in related field required. Additional relevant certifications, trainings and coursework also considered and preferred.
  • At least five years of project and program management experience required.
  • A minimum of five years of relevant experience within the finance, WSS, management consultancy and/or international development sectors with increasing levels of experience and responsibility.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in facilitation and capacity building to ensure collaboration and linkages between staff, donors, partners and stakeholders.
  • Strong networking skills; including confidence and ability to develop relationships with senior representatives of local financial institutions (e.g. microfinance institutions, commercial banks, mobile network operators, cooperatives, etc.), relevant local and national governmental institutions, the local development sector, the WSS sector, and other relevant stakeholders.
  • Demonstrated ability to identify new opportunities, establish cross-sector partnerships and design programs that are creative and leverage different stakeholders’ capacities.
  • Demonstrated skill with managing a project lifecycle, overseeing the implementation of several related projects, mitigating risk, and handing multiple unrelated projects and activities at one time.
  • Proficient in the use of effective communication techniques, particularly across a variety of constituencies and stakeholder groups.
  • Skilled at cross-cultural communication and collaboration. Ability to communicate fluently and effectively in English, with expertise in local language(s) in the region a plus.
  • Clear understanding of issues related to gender and inequality in development and demonstrated commitment to promoting gender equality and pro-poor strategies within the organization and in program work. Innovative mind-set oriented toward constructive problem-solving, proactive strategic development and thought leadership.

Travel Requirement

  • Up to 30% of travel.

Salary and benefits

This position offers full-time benefits, including medical/dental insurance, life and disability insurance, retirement program and periodic review for merit and incentive pay based on organizational and personal achievement. Salary will be based on education and experience, and will coincide with similar nonprofit organizations in international development. 

Water.org is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to providing an inclusive environment. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender expression, gender identity, age, national origin, ancestry, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, pregnancy status, military and veteran status, genetic information, and any other status protected by law.  We provide qualified applicants and employees reasonable accommodation, when necessary, to enable individuals to complete the application process and/or perform the essential functions of the job.