Regional Director, Central America and Hispaniola

CHAI - Clinton Health Access Initiative

Panama City, Panama

Overview of role:

CHAI is seeking a highly motivated individual to work as Regional Director in support of its regional team in Central America and Hispaniola. This team currently works across six countries in the region to rapidly re-orient national malaria programs toward elimination by providing technical support to governments and actively preparing the region for sustainable elimination by 2020. This position will provide operational, strategic, and administrative leadership to the regional malaria team while working closely with staff across all levels of the organization, including CHAI’s Boston-based operations teams. The Regional Operations Director will help to open new CHAI country offices, set up the necessary operational systems and processes to facilitate programmatic activities, guide recruiting for 10-15 new staff members, oversee the effective functioning of country offices, and support successful program implementation.

A successful candidate will be highly motivated and hard working with exceptional organizational, problem-solving, and communication skills. The Regional Director will understand the importance of working with tact, diplomacy, and discernment. CHAI places great value on relevant personal qualities including resourcefulness, responsibility, tenacity, humility, independence, energy, and strong work ethic. This position will report to CHAI’s Chief Operating Officer and will be part of CHAI’s global country operations report structure, while collaborating closely with regional technical staff and senior leadership of the Global Malaria team, including the Senior Director, the Director of Operations, and the Director of Elimination.

Placement location may change to another Central American country based on leadership approval.


  • Oversee all operations in the Central America and Hispaniola region to facilitate optimal efficiency and effectiveness of the malaria program;
  • Build and maintain a trusted relationship with government partners based on a track record of delivering results that exceed expectations in speed and quality;
  • Build and leverage strong relationships with key partners and stakeholders;
  • Work with the global malaria program to manage the program’s performance against key grant deliverables as well as ensure successful implementation;
  • In partnership with the global recruitment team, develop a successful recruitment strategy for hiring new staff members in the region and guide recruitment efforts;
  • Provide day-to-day management of approximately 20 staff working across multiple countries;
  • Partnering with CHAI’s Boston office, manage the registration and MoU processes in new countries in the region; this will require coordination with government officials and local legal counsel;
  • Manage relationships with local legal counsel on all compliance-related initiatives;
  • Guide processes related to work permits including legal compliance, in collaboration with CHAI’s Human Resources team in Boston;
  • Develop and manage contracts with consultants/subcontractors and partners, including coordination of follow-up, reporting, invoicing, and payment, in collaboration with CHAI’s Contracts and Finance teams in Boston;
  • Manage processes and tools for planning, budgeting and programmatic and financial reporting;
  • Provide oversight for office operations in the region, including human resource management, finance, IT, and administration;
  • Liaise with the CHAI’s Safety & Security team to ensure proper safety processes and tools are in place and correct duty of care procedures are followed;
  • Strategize to identify gaps in routine operations processes and develop solutions in a timely manner;
  • Work closely with CHAI’s Boston office on key operational initiatives.


  • Strong work ethic, integrity, credibility, and passion for CHAI’s mission of saving lives;
  • Bachelor’s degree required; MBA, MPH, MPP or related degree strongly preferred;
  • Minimum 8 years of professional experience with at least 5 years at a managerial level;
  • Proven experience in operations management;
  • Experience working in an international context and/or entrepreneurial environment;
  • Exceptional written, oral, interpersonal and organizational skills and the ability to effectively interface with senior management and staff;
  • Broad experience with the full range of business functions and systems, including strategic planning, organizational development, finance, information systems, and human resources;
  • Excellent judgement and creative problem solving skills;
  • Ability to think strategically and anticipate future consequences and trends;
  • Ability to work well both independently and as part of a multidisciplinary team;
  • Ability to be effective, calm, and flexible in high-pressure situations, to handle multiple tasks simultaneously and to effectively prioritize;
  • Ability to communicate effectively with people of varied professional and cultural backgrounds;
  • Proven ability to function in a fast-paced work environment;
  • Demonstrated ability to work with a sense of urgency and timeliness;
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook);
  • Spanish and English language fluency (written and oral);
  • Willingness to travel 25-50%.

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