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Job Posting: Senior Regional Technical Director (Africa)

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Quinn Harvey

Senior Program Manager

Normal user

12 Oct 2021, 21:10

Position: Senior Regional Technical Director, Africa

Company: The Vitamin Angel Alliance, Inc. (VA)

Contract Type: Independent Contractor

Location: Remote, Africa


Role or Purpose of Position

The role of the Senior Regional Technical Director (Africa) is to work in collaboration with the Senior Vice President for Nutrition on developing, planning, implementing, and evaluating special initiatives related to the introduction or strengthening of public health nutrition interventions, using an implementation science approach. The major duties of the Senior Regional Technical Director are to: i) provide real time technical advice, guidance, and expertise to VA’s program staff and country program advisors with a focus on VA country programs in Africa; ii) represent VA as directed by the Senior Vice President for Nutrition to advocate for our cause, advance country programs including governmental relationships important to our country programs, and further relationships with technical counterpart agencies.

The initial focus of the position will be to support VA’s global program to accelerate the uptake and use of multiple micronutrient supplementation (MMS) for pregnant women. Other of VA’s programs may be included over time. The immediate areas in which the Senior Regional Technical Director can begin to apply his/her expertise include support and collaboration to national governments pertaining to:

  • Creating an enabling environment for antenatal MMS introduction by engaging in efforts to raise awareness, build consensus, and advocate for the creation of policies and programs for MMS
  • Designing and testing implementation strategies to optimize implementation outcomes (i.e., uptake, adherence, feasibility, sustainability, equity, etc.)
  • Raising awareness through and among stakeholders for the investment of domestic resources to support antenatal MMS scale-up

Senior Regional Technical Director (Africa) applies expertise in all aspects of Program Division technical operations while working to promote, exemplify and further the mission[1], values, and culture of VA.

Major Duties and Illustrative Responsibilities

  1. Serve as an authoritative technical resource for information pertaining to MMS to VA’s country program advisors, national governments/stakeholders, national influencers/champions, and large NGO health systems.
  2. Assist in developing and refining VA's implementation science approach, including technical input to support the creation of resources (e.g., manuals, tools, etc.) to systematize the approach across regions and countries.  
  3. Support VA in identifying, onboarding, and managing short-term consultants in the Africa region to support the execution of introduction and scaling activities.
  4. In coordination with VA’s Regional Technical Director (Asia) for global coordination efforts, and VA’s country program advisors for more country-centric coordination, identify areas of collaboration between VA and national MMS stakeholders in Africa to introduce and scale MMS using VA’s implementation science approach.
  5. Provide technical support to national MMS stakeholders to advance their efforts to raise awareness to MMS, generate a consensus on the available scientific information (and gaps), advocate for effective adoption of an MMS policy and implementation plan.
  6. Support the planning and implementation of specific activities lead by national stakeholders to advance the enabling environment for adoption of an MMS policy and implementation plan.
  7. Provide technical support to national MMS stakeholders to advance their efforts to design and test implementation strategies.
  8. Provide technical support to national MMS stakeholders to advance activities (shaped and informed by implementation research) that support scaling of MMS in any given national setting.
  9. Work with the Senior Vice President for Nutrition to craft proposals for funding agencies to support investigation of issues that can inform programming decision making across VA’s global efforts to introduce and scale MMS.

Level of Decision-Making

Within the bounds of VA’s mission, values and policies, and sound professional practices, the Senior Regional Technical Director (Africa) provides day-to-day technical guidance and advice to Program Division staff/operations. S/he is free to manage his/her activities in whatever way best serves VA clients, partners and employees. Specific authorities and implementation procedures will be determined in conjunction with the Senior Vice President for Nutrition and outlined in an Independent Consultant contract.

Organizational Relationships

VA operates under a collaborative, matrix management model. The Senior Vice President for Nutrition assigns responsibilities and special initiatives to the Senior Regional Technical Director and monitors and supervises his/her overall performance. The Senior Regional Technical Director establishes his/her daily work priorities and ensures that all responsibilities are conducted consistent with accepted best practices, sound professional judgment and within established schedule and budget.

Reports to: Senior Vice President for Nutrition 

Supervises: None

Primary working relationships:

  • Senior Vice President for Nutrition
  • Associate Director of Program Operations
  • Sr. Nutrition Scientist
  • Regional Technical Director, Asia
  • Country Program Advisors and their staff
  • Unit Managers and their staff
  • Staff of counterpart technical agencies
  • Vendors

Travel required: Yes (roughly 25% time)

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (Required and Desired)

Required:

  • Minimum doctoral degree (e.g., PhD or doctor of public health or a related discipline) from an accredited university with significant experience in managing the introduction and scaling of public health programs informed by implementation research in an LMIC,
  • Minimum 8-10 years technical experience associated with performing program/project development, execution and management with an international non-profit organization,
  • Minimum 5-years’ experience working in an LMIC,
  • Computer literacy,
  • Superior written and oral communications skills,
  • Superior interpersonal skills, and
  • Superior organizational skills.

Highly desirable:

  • Fluency in a second language, and
  • Degree in Nutritional Science

Challenges of the Position

The special challenges for the Senior Regional Technical Director are multi-fold. He/she must: i) function effectively in an organization under continuing transformation and growth, ii) recognize and thrive in a non-profit organization driven by an unusual primary revenue generation model – cause marketing promotions in association with retail products and Corporate Social Responsibility programs, iii) be comfortable with an organization that seeks to apply, as feasible, market and business oriented solutions to its non-profit work, iv) function within a working environment that demands entrepreneurial orientation, self-initiative and collaboration among many team members both internal and external to VA, v) possess an ability to work effectively/efficiently and thrive in an environment in which many VA team members both internal and external to the Program Division are situated in multiple time zones and accessible only by phone, email, or videoconferencing software, and vi) be compatible with a passionate, high energy/highly committed staff with an already developed “culture”.

Application

To apply, interested persons should submit a cover letter; resume or curriculum vitae to: programs@vitaminangels.org.

[1] Our mission is to help at-risk populations in need – specifically pregnant women, new mothers, and children under five – gain access to life changing vitamins and minerals.

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