Vice President (Government Affairs)
World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the world's leading conservation organization, seeks a Vice President for Government Affairs in our Washington, DC office. The Vice President leads the organization’s engagement with the Executive and Congressional branches of the US Government (USG) in support of a WWF strategy which targets the five overarching goals of: developing transformational partnerships, securing funds, achieving conservation results in places, engaging the public, and contributing to the success of our integrated strategy. The latter focuses on the relationship of USG policies and programs to WWF’s strategic plan and its emphasis on addressing key threats or “drivers” impacting WWF’s priority ecoregions. As part of our public outreach, the Vice President will work closely with communications, advocacy, and social media teams to drive the strategies that engage both influencers and the broad WWF activist community. The Vice President is also responsible for developing and implementing a strategy to secure grants and contracts from USG agencies. The Vice President manages a team which serves as overall relationship managers for government agencies as well as our principal point of contact with the Non-Governmental Organizations (“NGO”) community on matters related to policies and programs undertaken by USG agencies and the US Congress.
Strategic vision: The Vice President leads the organization in developing and implementing a strategy to influence US Executive and Congressional branches to pursue policy and funding to ensure significant environmental and sustainable development outcomes.
Creativity & innovation: Identifies and creates solutions to the political, social, scientific, and management issues that confront WWF in achieving its goals. Solves problems and makes things happen under complex circumstances.
Negotiations and partnering: Key USG entities with whom the Vice President is expected to develop effective working relationships include: the Department of State, the Agency for International Development, the Office of Management and Budget, the Department of the Interior, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Science Foundation, the US Geologic Service, the Congressional authorities and appropriate communities with conservation jurisdiction and key members of Congress and Congressional staff who impact international conservation. Negotiates agreements that incorporate the conditions necessary for success. Represents the US desire for dramatic conservation outcomes while collaborating with WWF network partners to build a mutually agreeable strategy and work plan. Ensures positive working alliances with various stakeholders.
Communications and fundraising: Within this context, the Vice President is responsible for developing and implementing a strategy for ensuring that WWF-US is securing funds from USG sources to support environmental and sustainable development outcomes. Serves as the champion for the effort to raise funds from the USG and globally, as appropriate. Leads major fundraising efforts in conjunction with other relevant staff. Engages policymakers and institutions in building public awareness and commitment through comprehensive campaigns. Accountable for annual fundraising goals and commitments.
Team building and management: Builds and leads a team across the organization that manages WWF-US’s relationships with USG Executive and Legislative Branch entities and state and local entities, as appropriate. Leads the team to execute the strategy for engaging with a particular institution or set of institutions. Sets goals and expectations, drives to achieve success, measures and communicates progress on an ongoing basis. Develops and maintains WWF operations and systems which track the status of potential and actual contracts, grants, and authorized and appropriated funds related to WWF activities. Creates opportunities for recognition and development. Provides feedback, counseling & coaching.
Legislative relations: Supervises legislative and government relations team which is responsible for maintaining relations with the Congress and Executive Branch agencies; advocates for WWF-US interests in legislation, including appropriations for conservation activities by USG agencies and international organizations; identifies and pursues USG funding opportunities; assumes a key leadership role with other NGOs on critical policy matters of high interest to WWF.
Other: Performs other duties as assigned.
A Bachelor’s degree is required; Master’s degree in a related field is strongly preferred. Candidates should have fifteen years of work experience in the relevant nonprofit, public and private sector. The ideal candidate will have the following skills sets:
Experience in developing and implementing strategies to influence US government conservation policies and to secure financial support from US government entities (agencies and legislative branch)
Experience in administering, leading, and managing professionals engaged in development of policy and securing of government funding
Experience on the Hill in conservation programs, policies and appropriations
Experience administering US government programs which support domestic and international conservation
Experience working with NGOs engaged in the development of conservation policy and programs
Experience with both the Legislative and Executive Branches, the broader NGO community, and with global organizations.
Fluency in English is required. Proficiency in other languages is an advantage.
Strong written and verbal communications skills.
Excellent organizational skills with an emphasis on program and project management.
A high-level of interpersonal skills is required. Especially relationship management skills and the ability to work as part of a high-level international team.
Negotiation and facilitation skills are key to this position.
The ability to effectively prioritize and work accurately under time constraints.
National and international travel required.