Country Director Libya
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, the IRC offers lifesaving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster. At work today in over 40 countries and 22 U.S. cities, we restore safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted by conflict and disaster. The IRC leads the way from harm to home.
The IRC launched an emergency health response in Libya in 2016 as the humanitarian situation in the country deteriorated following the 2014 civil war. Since then, and despite continued instability and conflict, the IRC has extended its presence throughout the country, implementing a diverse, integrated program of health, protection, and governance programs. These programs prioritize local partnerships with both public institutions and civil society, and span humanitarian, recovery, and development modalities, while serving vulnerable Libyans including IDPs and Returnees, Migrants and Refugees, Women, Children, and Youth.
The IRC Country Director sets the vision and strategic direction for operations in Libya and oversees all programs under development in Tunisia. The Country Director will maintain the continuity of humanitarian, development, stabilization, and peacebuilding support in Libya in alignment with relevant Libyan government authorities, Libyan civil society, and in alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework for Libya and IRC’s Strategy 100, our organization’s strategic plan to guide our work as we approach the 100th anniversary of IRC’s founding in 1933.
The Country Director is responsible for the overall leadership and supervisory management of IRC’s 200 staff as well as all programming, and operations, including program quality and accountability, stewardship of resources, staff safety and security, performance management, and external representation. The Country Director is IRC’s principal representative on behalf of the Libya country program to government officials, non-governmental actors, Libya civil society, donors, international organizations, and the media.
Success in this position requires an individual with exemplary, demonstrated leadership abilities who deploys strong communications and interpersonal skills effectively, both internally and externally. The successful candidate will enjoy contextual analytical skills with an ability to translate the impact of geopolitical events to our day-to-day operations. They will build a network of partnerships and diversify program resources. They will be directly responsible for the overall coordination and strategic direction of the country program; providing oversight and coaching for directly supervised senior managers; leading country program teams to identify, design and deliver responsive, high-quality programs; ensuring efficient management of public grants and private funds for results, compliance, and focused, timely reporting; and oversight of financial management and compliance systems.
Leadership and Representation
• Develop a vision and carry out strategies that result in contextualized high-quality programs that meet the identified needs of clients.
• Lead the country program by maintaining open and professional relations with colleagues, promoting a strong team spirit and providing guidance, oversight and resources to enable staff to perform successfully.
• Initiate and sustain strong, mutually beneficial, and authentic partnerships with Libyan organizations.
• Ensure that the IRC remains a partner of choice for major international (institutional and non-institutional) donors.
• Seek out and pursue opportunities to raise the profile of the work of the IRC and its partners, as well as the lives and the needs of the people IRC seeks to serve.
• Play a leadership role in efforts to improve humanitarian response coordination in Libya.
Staff Management, Learning and Development
• Supervise and mentor direct-report staff, including communicating clear expectations, setting performance objectives and providing regular and timely performance feedback.
• As part of a succession plan, identify, train, and develop the capability and capacity of staff to successfully transition roles and responsibilities, by end of the assignment.
• Promote and monitor staff care and well-being. Model healthy work-life balance practices.
Stewardship and Operational Management
• Drive operational excellence to achieve optimal efficiency and cost-effectiveness in all functions and operations of the country program.
• Oversee the development, deployment and utilization of financial and operational policies, procedures, and systems to deliver compliance with IRC and donor requirements.
• Ensure responsiveness and appropriate levels of in-person and remote support to all offices, especially in the areas of HR, finance, and supply chain.
• Provide timely and effective oversight of the Libya country program’s financial position.
• Maintain effective and coordinated budget monitoring processes for grant funds and discretionary funds.
• Model and encourage active practice of the principles of the “IRC Way – Global Standards for Professional Conduct” throughout the Libya country program.
• Maintain a healthy and empowering office environment that encourages open, honest, and productive communication among IRC staff and with partner organizations.
• Maintain open communication with regional management staff and technical advisors, and HQ departmental staff.
Key Working Relationships:
Position Reports to: Regional Vice-President - MENA
Position directly Supervises: A senior management team responsible for programs, operations, finance, HR, and security
Key Internal Contacts:
Country Program: All staff
Region: Middle East and North Africa Regional Team
HQ: Crisis Response and Recovery Department (CRRD), Ethics & Compliance, Operations and Strategy, Finance, Global Philanthropy & Partnerships, Technical Excellence and General Counsel
Key External Contacts:
Host country government officials
Public and private donor agencies
International and national NGOs
Education and Work Experience:
• A university degree in a relevant field and/or 12 years of progressively responsible international work experience, including leadership at the Country Director level of multi-site, multi-sectoral operations in a complex operating environment.
• Experience working in conflict/post-conflict or disaster response situations.
Demonstrated Technical Skills:
• Superior communication skills, verbal and written, in English, Arabic is preferred.
• Experience in managing security in a complex and rapidly changing security context.
• Proven ability to negotiate and work with partner organizations.
• Strong budget and fiscal oversight capacities.
• Extensive representation and fundraising success, including prior experience with European, US, and other international donors.
• Established capacity to handle stressful situations in a healthy, constructive manner.
• Ability to respond to multiple priorities in a timely manner, producing high-quality outcomes.
• Prior work experience and a keen understanding of political complexities in the Middle East and North Africa region is preferred.
Demonstrated Managerial/Leadership Competencies:
• Demonstrated successful leadership and management experience with a multi-disciplinary team in cross-cultural settings, including active mentoring and coaching.
• Effective in developing high-potential staff to achieve career growth and maximum contribution.
• Proven experience in managing high-quality programming that meets the needs of clients.
• Proven experience delivering appropriate levels of oversight of a portfolio consisting of a variety of complex, high-value donor-funded projects.
• Experience building personal networks at a senior level, resulting in securing new opportunities for the organization.
• Opportunity-awareness. A successful innovative approach to unpredictable programming, operational, and funding contexts.
• Ability to dispassionately represent program context, constraints, and successes to media, government, and other senior audiences.
• Professional fluency in written and spoken English.
• Arabic language skills are a definite advantage.
Computer/Other Tech Requirements:
• Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite, especially Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.
• Working knowledge of file sharing protocols such as Dropbox, SharePoint, etc., an advantage.
Ability to Travel: approximately 25% within and outside the region for workshops, representation, and conferences
Professional Standards: IRC staff must adhere to the values and principles outlined in IRC Way – Global Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, Accountability and Equality. In accordance with these values, IRC operates and carries out policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti-Workplace Harassment, Respect at Work Fiscal Integrity, and Anti-Retaliation.
Returning National Candidates: We strongly encourage national or returning national candidates to apply for this position. If you are a citizen of the Country in which this position is based and are currently located outside of your home country and possess over two years of international work experience, the Middle East Region has introduced an attractive remuneration package. The package includes competitive compensation, return flight to post, shipping allowance, temporary housing, and a relocation allowance. Certain restrictions may apply. IRC strives to attract, motivate, and retain qualified national staff in our programs.
Gender Equality: IRC is committed to narrowing the gender gap in leadership positions. We offer benefits that provide an enabling environment for women to participate in our workforce including parental leave, gender-sensitive security protocols and other supportive benefits and allowances.
Diversity and Inclusion: at IRC MENA, we are passionate about creating an inclusive workplace that promotes and values diversity. Organizations that are diverse in age, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, ethnicity, nationality, and perspective are validated to be better organizations. More importantly, creating a safe workspace environment where everyone, from any background, can do their best is the right thing to do. So, bring your whole self to work.