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Vice President, Africa

Conservation International Ventures

Conservation International Ventures

Johannesburg, South Africa · Cape Town, South Africa
Posted on Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Vice President, Africa

Conservation International protects nature for the benefit of humanity. Through science, policy, fieldwork, and finance, we spotlight and secure the most important places in nature for the climate, biodiversity, and for people. With offices in 30 countries and projects in more than 100 countries, Conservation International partners with governments, companies, civil society, Indigenous peoples, and local communities to help people and nature thrive together.

POSITION SUMMARY - This position is based in Kenya, South Africa, Liberia, Botswana or Madagascar

Reporting to the Senior Vice President (SVP), the Vice President (VP) for the Africa Field Division assumes a pivotal role in providing strategic direction, leadership, and oversight for CI's Field Programs across Africa. With a focus on achieving high-impact results within CI's established business model and the framework of "healthy sustainable societies," the VP collaborates closely with the SVP to steer and manage the Africa Field Division.

As a vital member of the Division's Senior Management Team, the VP is entrusted with driving impactful and high-quality outcomes across all country and regional program initiatives. This entails cultivating robust connections between country-level programs and overarching regional and global strategies and objectives. The role encompasses the execution of conservation strategies for terrestrial and marine priority areas, fostering sustainable production and consumption mechanisms, and pioneering innovative approaches for distributing nature's benefits.

Beyond programmatic leadership, the VP ensures excellence in administrative, financial, and staff management matters, contributing to the overall strength of the division.


Strategy Implementation:

  • Ensure effective delivery of the Division’s Programme Strategies, with emphasis on working with AfFD and Arlington-based Division-Heads to ensure coordination and alignment with CI’s strategies.
  • Ensure an efficient and integrated programme approach that demonstrates impact and reflects CI’s initiatives and projects as appropriate to local conditions.
  • Actively engage cultivate and manage internal and external relationships to ensure traction for CI’s programmes and projects.
  • Work closely with Country Directors and collaborate with Senior Vice President in implementing the organization's strategic plan and policies to ensure strategy and plans align with the overall goal of the organization.

Program Delivery:

  • Support country directors and senior director delivery to ensure successful execution of conservation programs and initiatives across Africa Field Division.
  • Monitor program outcomes, evaluate their effectiveness, and make data-driven decisions to optimize impact.

Fundraising and Partnerships:

  • Collaborate with the Division’s Management Team, Country Directors, and other senior leaders within CI Global, in the development of relationships with partners in the public and private sectors that are key to CI’s success; develop proposals and project concepts to mobilize programmatic financing from public/private sources, foundations and other partners or secure pro-bono services for programme efforts.
  • Lead identification and development of strategic partnerships with local, regional, and global organizations and translate them to managed programs with demonstrable benefits to the conservation agenda.
  • Represent CI and promote the organization's interest in various sectors, national, regional, and global forums, and in conversations with government and other influential stakeholders.

People and Programme Management:

  • Provision of oversight supervision of relevant staff, programmes, and budgets; focus on ensuring high-impact and high-quality conservation outcomes, capacity building, and programme quality control; ensuring knowledge sharing between programme staff across the Division.
  • Coordinate support from regional and global actors who are partners and stakeholders in the conservation field.
  • Implementing and managing changes and interventions to ensure program goals are achieved.
  • Planning and designing programs and proactively monitoring it's progress, resolving issues, and initiating appropriate corrective action through the program managers
  • Oversee Operations and employee productivity, building a highly inclusive culture that ensures team members can thrive and organizational objectives are met.
  • Ensure country teams and regional technical teams meet the short-term and long-term range plans, and budgets based on defined goals and growth objectives.

People and Resource Management Responsibilities:

  • Directly supervise program and project staff, including overseeing the work of external partners.
  • Manage the AFD budget and finances.
  • Manage public or private funds; ensure compliance with donor requirements and CI policies.

Other duties as assigned by supervisor.


  • Local and/or international travel of 30% or more, often in difficult travel conditions.
  • Ability to work in remote locations or under difficult working conditions.
  • This position follows a hybrid work structure, working some days from the office and some remotely. Guidance will be shared during the interview process.



  • Advanced degree (MSc or PhD) in a related field and a minimum of 15+ years of experience leading humanitarian/conservation/development efforts in Africa at the country and continental scales.
  • 5 or more years of experience managing teams of professional employees.
  • Demonstrated track record of strategy innovation and program implementation.
  • Senior-level program or project management experience, preferably in the global conservation, NGO, advocacy, or related for-profit arena.
  • Proven ability to formulate and execute results utilizing strong analytical, critical decision-making, and strategic planning skills.
  • Clear and concise verbal and written communication skills.
  • Proven financial management and analytical skills, including experience with planning and managing complex budgets.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, personal and professional confidence, and presence, and the ability to effectively build strong relationships both internally and externally with individuals across disciplines, cultures, and backgrounds to achieve shared goals.
  • A record of success in influencing and partnering with key stakeholders and raising funds.
  • Proven ability to multitask and meet priorities. Comfortable working in a fast-paced environment with changing priorities and under minimal supervision.
  • Fluency in English.


  • Demonstrated technical experience in one or more of CI’s key areas of intervention including agriculture/ agribusiness sector (especially palm oil) or experience in marine and coastal conservation.
  • Able to speak at least one of the two most important languages in Africa (French or Portuguese).

To apply for this position please submit a resume and cover letter.

See all Conservation International Career Opportunities HERE

Conservation International is an equal opportunity, affirmative action, and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility-committed employer. We are proud to have a diverse, global workforce where employment decisions are based on qualifications, experience, position requirements, business needs, market conditions, merit, and other legitimate nondiscriminatory factors.

As a science-based organization, CI follows CDC recommendations for COVID-19 and other vaccines. Accordingly, for the health and safety of our employees, their families, and our community, subject to applicable local law, all Conservation International staff are expected to be vaccinated against COVID-19. However, vaccination is no longer a mandate or condition of employment and employees are not required to provide proof of vaccination. This means we will not require an individual to be vaccinated to enter a CI office, attend CI events or travel on CI-related trips. This applies for our community partners as well. This vaccine expectation applies to all team members working remotely, in a hybrid work arrangement, and on-site. Job applicants are NOT required to state their COVID-19 vaccine status in their application.