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Country Director, Colombia

Reference   (Please mention Stopdodo/Environment Jobs in your application)
Sectors Landscape, Arboriculture, Horticulture
Type Fixed Term and Permanent Roles
Status Full Time
Level Senior Level
Company Name Wildlife Conservation Society
Contact Name Recruitment - Global
Telephone 718-220-5886
Website Further Details / Applications
Wildlife Conservation Society logo
Directory Entry : The Wildlife Conservation Society, founded in 1895, has the clear mission to save wildlife and wild places across the globe.
Also Listing:

The Wildlife Conservation Society saves wildlife and wild lands through careful science, international conservation, education, and the management of the world’s largest system of urban wildlife parks. These activities change attitudes toward nature and help people imagine wildlife and humans living in sustainable interaction on both a local and a global scale. WCS is committed to this work because we believe it essential to the integrity of life on Earth.

WCS has contributed for over 25 years to the conservation of biodiversity in Colombia, and currently focuses on bridging the gap between conservation and development, to ensure that improving the well-being of all Colombians also contributes to the long-term sustainability of wildlife and wild landscapes. The work of WCS’s work in Colombia is guided by the organization’s global strategic principles of WCS: discover, protect and inspire, and comprises six main axes.  On one hand, Species Conservation, the Management of Protected Areas, and the promotion of Sustainable Productive Landscapes, seek to significantly increase the impact of WCS projects WCS has conducted over the years in Colombia. On the other hand, supporting the establishment of New Protected Areas, working on the relationship between Business and Biodiversity, and Inspiring people to value Nature, aim to respond to priorities of national order and support public policies in which WCS can make a significant contribution.

Job Opportunity:

Job Title: Country Director, Colombia 

Location: Bogotá, Colombia   

Reports to: Andes, Amazon, Orinoco Regional Director       


Position Summary:

The Colombia Country Director manages all WCS activities in Colombia, ensuring the organization significantly and effectively contributes to the long-term conservation of the country’s unique biodiversity. He or she will be based in Bogotá, and reports to WCS’s AAO Regional Director. As part of the senior team of the AAO Global Priority Region, he or she is also expected to help shape the regional strategy and engage in programs that extend beyond national borders. The Director will advance the overarching strategic vision of the Colombia program and lead its implementation using a results-based approach, building and maintaining strong public and private partnerships and multi-stakeholder coalitions. He or she must have: the capacity to strategize based on a thorough analysis of technical and political risks and opportunities; the ability and experience to foster relationships and alliances with the government, private sector and civil society; the drive to develop innovative conservation approaches; the leadership to manage a multidisciplinary team; and, the personality to inspire and foster change. The Colombia Country Director will be based in Bogotá, with significant travel time between cities, in the field, visiting WCS’s headquarters, and representing the program regionally.


Key Responsibilities:

In consultation and coordination with the Andes, Amazon, Orinoco Regional Director will:

  • Build and update the strategic vision for WCS’s work in Colombia.
  • Direct international attention to conservation of important sites and species in Colombia, and influence policies that promote their long-term persistence.
  • Promote wildlife conservation in Colombia, and represent WCS, in national and international forums and key venues.
  • Maintain, strengthen and establish new partnerships and coalitions with governmental entities, key civil society partners, private sector and donors.
  • Manage and convene the Advisory Council of WCS Colombia, promoting an active engagement of its members.
  • Develop projects and initiatives that generate conservation impact at meaningful scales.
  • Serve as the legal representative of WCS Colombia, and ensure the Colombia program complies with all rules, regulations and best practices issued by the Colombian Government and governing bodies of WCS.
  • Oversee the implementation of current projects and initiatives, and ensure quality technical and budget execution.
  • Provide leadership, promote teamwork and provide feedback to staff.
  • Serve as a member of the Andes, Amazon, Orinoco regional team, helping to shape the regional strategy, promoting cross-border collaborations within regional initiatives such as Amazon Waters, and facilitating learning and cross-pollination between programs.


Specifically, the Director will:

  • Keep all relevant departments of WCS informed about developments in the WCS Colombia Program, and the political and conservation context of the country.
  • Develop innovative funding mechanisms, and fundraise for the program from bilateral and multilateral cooperation agencies, foundations, private donors, and corporate funders. Oversee preparation of funding proposals in coordination with other relevant departments in WCS.
  • Establish a control, monitoring, and evaluation system that ensures high-quality and efficient implementation of strategic plans, and general and project specific implementation plans and budgets. Oversee the production of reports and other required documents, including WCS internal reports and reports to donors or partners.
  • Supervise the financial management of the program, including accepting overall fiduciary responsibility. Work with the Financial Manager, Project Directors, and New York office to develop and stay within an annual budget and work plan.
  • Assess and update the organizational structure to ensure its pertinence, including regular review of positions and job descriptions, line management, performance evaluations, merit salary increases, internal coordination policies, communication policies, etc. Establish internal policies that foster staff motivation, high-quality performance, and a harmonic organizational culture.
  • Manage and mentor senior staff, including: recruiting and professional development, supporting senior staff in their responsibilities and projects, and providing both formal and informal evaluation and advice. 
  • Contribute to, enlarge and uphold WCS’s policies towards Equal Employment Opportunities for women, minorities, the handicapped, and other protected groups.


Experience and Skills:

  • Applicants should have a PhD or Master’s degree and extensive equivalent experience in leading and overseeing projects in fields related to environmental management, preferably in Colombia
  • At least 5 years of proven experience working in or with Colombian government institutions, NGOs, private sector or local communities
  • Knowledge of conservation issues and sociopolitical context of Colombia
  • At least 8 years of management experience in large environmental programs
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Excellent team leader, ability to manage and inspire a team, to build capacities within the team, and to mentor
  • Ability to foster teamwork and build capacity within the program
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
  • Ability to work in a range of cultural contexts
  • Analytical thinking and decisive judgment
    • Drive for results
    • Willingness to travel
  • Significant and diverse fundraising experience
  • Excellent spoken and written English and Spanish language skills


Physical Demands:


The physical demands described hare are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


Specific vision abilities require by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and abilities to adjust focus.


Work Environment:


The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

WCS is an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from diversity candidates.

Please apply on-line at http://www.wcs.org/about-us/careers. In addition to applying on-line, please 

send your resume and cover letter in English or Spanish to wcslatinamerica@wcs.org and postulaciones@gestiontalento.com with Ref: Country Director Colombia. Please include at least two references and your salary expectations.


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