Chief Program Officer

from Invisible Children
Closing date: 21 Nov 2019

Invisible Children is seeking a dynamic, highly organized, and self-motivated Chief Program Officer. The Chief Program Officer (CPO) will serve as a critical member of the organization’s executive management team. The CPO will oversee Invisible Children’s field-based programs and related operations; evaluate the effectiveness of programs; provide input into the organization’s development strategy; raise the organization’s profile through external communications; provide mentoring, guidance, supervision, and professional development to field-based leadership.


The Chief Program Officer will be based out of Invisible Children’s headquarters in Washington, D.C., and will spend a significant amount of time at Invisible Children field offices and project sites, currently located in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Central African Republic (CAR), and South Sudan.


+ In partnership with the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and global leadership team, play a key role in the overall strategy, program design, and project and program management of the programs across multiple field locations and teams;

+ Collaboration with the CEO and country directors to identify and pursue new donor and programmatic partnerships that align with the organization’s strategic priorities;

+ Directly supervise field-based senior leadership (including country directors) and headquarters-based program coordinators; working closely with senior program staff to build their skills and confidence so that they can mentor, encourage, and motivate all staff. Provide assistance and guidance on how to troubleshoot program and staff performance challenges. Mentor directors, project leaders, and program coordinators on how to proactively engage in planning to improve program management;

+ When needed, back-fill field-based senior leadership functions;

+ Advise and support country directors and other relevant field leadership to ensure safe and effective field-based operations, including security management;

+ Identify and manage major organizational and programmatic risks; provide relevant and timely information to the CEO to enable effective decision-making

+ Model Invisible Children’s culture and values, fostering an environment of team-work, accountability, creativity, and innovation;

+ Ensure that evidence-based and data-driven decision-making are adopted into regular practices and strategic choices;

+ Maintain ultimate responsibility for planning and delivery against the programs’ strategies, annual plans, and budgets;

+ Effectively use data for decision-making, leveraging data to continuously improve upon and inform key program and operational decisions;

+ Engage and communicate the organization’s mission and vision internally and externally, including with current and future partners and other key stakeholders.

Who We’re Looking For:

Invisible Children seeks a dynamic leader to build upon and enhance its field-based programmatic initiatives. The ideal candidate will have a strong commitment to the organization’s mission and thrive in an entrepreneurial environment.


+ Proficient in French with 8+ years of experience;

+ Expert in program development, management, and evaluation. Proven experience in managing large scale government-funded projects. Able to identify the structure, tools, and resourcing needed to deliver these programs at exceptional quality;

+ Strong relationship-builder with the ability to find common ground, build consensus, and strengthen collaboration among diverse stakeholders;

+ Talented people manager, with a proven track record of successfully enabling high performance from a diverse array of direct reports including highly technical staff. This should include the ability to synthesize and process technical information in order to serve as a thought partner to technical leads;

+ Experience with program management in conflict zones, preferably with USAID- or other government-funded programs in conflict zones;

+ Strong problem-solving and analytical skills. The CPO will be comfortable with data for decision-making, and planning within ambiguous, fluctuating conditions;

+ Strong interpersonal and negotiation skills. The CPO will be highly effective in building relationships with donors and partners, and in engaging collaboratively and effectively across a matrixed structure;

+ Strong alignment with core Invisible Children’s values, and ability to lead and thrive in a fast-paced, rapidly growing organization;

+ An advanced degree in International Development or another relevant field.

About Invisible Children

Headquartered in Washington, D.C., Invisible Children (IC) is an international non-profit organization working to end violent conflict and exploitation facing our world’s most isolated and unprotected communities. We partner with local visionaries in volatile conflict zones to build community-led initiatives and drive global policy change to end violent conflict and ensure communities have the safety they deserve. When Invisible Children was founded in 2004, our primary aim was to hasten an end to the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) crisis in central Africa and support the lasting recovery of communities in the region targeted by the LRA and other armed groups. Our comprehensive approach to the LRA crisis has integrated every level of intervention, from direct partnerships with local communities to advocacy campaigns targeting international policymakers.

Over the course of 12 years working with remote communities in central Africa, we have contributed to significant progress in ending the LRA crisis, while refining and adapting our programs to address other drivers of violent conflict in the central Africa region. IC’s current work focuses on developing innovative and sustainable solutions to regional insecurity and armed group violence. In recent years, this has included the exploration of community-based initiatives and conflict analysis to address the intersection of human security and wildlife trafficking in the central Africa region.

How to apply:

To apply for the position of Chief Program Officer, please submit a cover letter and resume via email to Please include “Chief Program Officer” in the subject of your email.

Invisible Children will consider applications on a rolling basis.