Director of Project Development, Power & Climate (Nairobi) at The Rockefeller Foundation
The Rockefeller Foundation has a unique opportunity to play a central role in fixing food loss-an eminently fixable problem. Just as we deployed resources to increase production when there simply was not enough food to feed humanity, we now have an opportunity-and an imperative-to ensure that the food that is grown is consumed. This is why the Rockefeller Foundation launched the YieldWise Initiative in January 2016.
We have the opportunity to rapidly accelerate the pace of electrification by leveraging the full potential that distributed renewable energy offers to the world’s poorest populations. Dramatic price reductions and performance improvements resulting from technological innovation and scale have disrupted the traditional energy system. The greatest impact of this disruption could be to power transformational development opportunities for the world’s energy poor communities with clean, reliable, and distributed energy resources. The Rockefeller Foundation is uniquely positioned to lead the development of large-scale, innovative partnerships that break down the silos between traditional utilities and these disruptive new technologies and unleash a new wave of last-mile electrification that better directs public investments and crowds-in private players.
Accountable to the Executive Director (ED), Smart Power Africa (SPA) for refining in country and operation strategy, leading in-country teams, and building institutional capacity to execute on SPA’s goals. This includes identifying feasible opportunities that offer potential to develop and build new partnerships in line with SPA’s objectives.
Working with colleagues, governments, multilateral donors, and private sector players, the Director of Project Development will identify and manage partnerships that accelerate the pace of electrification on the continent.
Principal Duties and Responsibilities
Responsible for the planning and management of SPA’s in country and operation in coordination with senior management strategy and implementation by:
- Lead the in country project development and deal origination work in DRE.
- Refining in country and operational strategy, translating vision and ambition into clear narratives and impactful programs which respond to local context while driving scale.
- Driving to keep strategies up-to-date and responsive to the needs of evolving sectors, in each of the priority countries.
- Identifying key partners in priority countries, including government actors and development partners, private sector players and building relationships.
- Leading country-level planning and defining engagements, deploying tools such as technical assistance, data analytics, influence, or grants.
- Creating collaborative initiatives that will ensure long term sustainability and scalability of these programs.
- Hiring and overseeing teams in priority countries to execute the agreed plans and deliver on SPA’s vision.
- Assessing existing programs and identifying opportunities for leveraging SPA’s philanthropic capital to amplify and accelerate progress in the sector.
- Identifying investable deals that SPA’s colleagues can evaluate for investment.
- Maintaining strong partnerships with key stakeholders in the international DRE space to ensure visibility and execution on opportunities as they emerge.
- Working with SPA leadership to strengthen institutional capacity and build high-performing teams, putting in place the organizational culture, systems, and processes that will allow people to thrive and teams to do their best work.
- Creating and maintaining strong stakeholder relationships, drawing on the contributions of the ED and other senior parties as may be needed.
Education, Experience, and Skills
- A bachelor’s degree in Engineering or a related field is preferred.
- Minimum of 7 years of energy sector experience, preferably with a focus on distributed energy resources.
- Must have previous work experience in a complex, fast-paced and highly professional role and global organization with multiple offices and with a strong mission and focus on people or a related role in a not-for-profit organization focused on a highly dynamic, evolving organization and work environment.
- Demonstrated proactive problem-solving skills with strong decision-making capability.
- Work effectively both independently, as well as, in a team-oriented, collaborative and collegial environment.
- Has the ability to identify, prioritize and manage project development and partnership opportunities.
- Has excellent interpersonal, written and verbal communication skills and is effective in developing positive and productive relationships with partners.
- Proven experience working effectively as part of a team and autonomously.
- Proven excellent project management and organizational skills with a demonstrated ability to deliver high quality, accurate work on time.
- Has experience within a highly collaborative, dynamic organization and in an entrepreneurial environment where building policies, program and processes are necessary.
- Demonstrated technical proficiency with Microsoft Word, Excel and Power Point.
Qualifications and Competencies
- Project Development Experience: Strong experience identifying, assessing, and proposing potential project development opportunities.
- Partnership development: Strong experience developing partnerships with governments, multilateral and private sector players.
- Entrepreneurial mindset: Ability to identify opportunities that would support the Foundation, our partners and our investees in meeting the goals and ambition of the power team.
- Strategy: Highly strategic mindset with ability to identify and prioritize what’s important in any project, demonstrates innovative approaches to work, ability to organize chaos into coherent plan.
- Project Management: High operational and project management ability; proactive. Sound, mature judgment, integrity, and respect for others.
- Decision-Making: Analytical and strong problem-solving abilities, takes initiative, drives for results, ability to prioritize work, communicates problems and proposes solutions, as appropriate.
- Execution: Strong project management skills; meets deadlines; ability to multi-task and work under pressure; detail oriented. Sense of urgency and responsibility, flexible work style; a self-started who can work independently as well as in and across teams.
- Passion and Optimism: Deep enthusiasm for the mission and people of the Foundation; entrepreneurial energy around connecting an engaged staff with the overall impact of the Foundation’s work.
- Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: You’re committed to the mission of the Foundation, to inclusion, equity and diversity in every aspect of your work, and to challenging conventional wisdom through evidence, reason, and amplifying dissenting, unconventional, and marginalized voices.
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