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Executive Director at IFOAM OI Bonn - 19485

Job Title: 
Executive Director
Charles-de-Gaulle Str. 5 Germany
53113 Bonn ,
Job Type: 
Employment Type: 
Job Description: 

IFOAM – Organics International is looking for a new
Executive Director
as per November 1, 2023, or as mutually agreed.
In a world threatened by ecosystem and climate collapse, organic farming systems can be a real game changer. Practiced by millions of farmers and supported by hundreds of millions of consumers around the globe, it substantially contributes to the production of healthy, nutritious food and other natural products for a growing population, enables farmers to earn a fair living, regenerates and enhances soil fertility and biodiversity, safeguards and replenishes scarce water resources, mitigates climate change and helps negatively impacted people adapt to that change.
Recognized globally as part of the solution to the crises of food security, inequality, climate and loss of biodiversity, the task now is to upscale and further develop organic farming and food systems. This requires a new phase in IFOAM – Organics International, uniting members, staff and allies in building new partnerships, setting a global agenda and empowering our members to drive change around the world. We seek new leadership for this new chapter.

About IFOAM – Organics International
With more than 790 affiliates in about 120 countries, a network of regional and thematic bodies and a team of 20 dedicated staff, IFOAM – Organics International represents the global organic movement. Since its inception in 1972, it has developed from an ad hoc group to a driving force for the successful upscaling of organic farming and creation of shared global principles and standards as a basis for consumer trust, increased sales, farmer livelihoods and a healthier planet. Our goal is to grow the organic movement and sector while making it more sustainable, and to inspire mainstream agriculture.

In our new organizational strategy developed in dialogue with members and partners, IFOAM – Organics International has three objectives accelerating organic change on behalf of our membership:
a) Global leadership of the organic movement
b) Empowered organics worldwide
c) Financial and organisational stability

This challenging, full-time position is based at the organization’s international office in Bonn, Germany, in an attractive geographical and institutional setting and provides the opportunity for frequent international travel. Salary at the level of similar international non-profit organizations and commensurate with experience, skills, and performance.

Duties & Responsibilities: 

Key responsibilities
The Executive Director (ED) leads the organization, providing operational guidance and motivating the realization of our organizational strategy. Our new ED is responsible for the development and implementation of budgets, plans and programs as approved by the World Board. Our ED builds strategic external relationships and leads organizational development including the development of our financial and human resources as well as brand value.

Specific key duties are:
• Mission and strategy: Work with board, staff and network to ensure that the mission is fulfilled
through programs, strategic planning and partnerships. Operationalise goals and visions in concrete activities, organizational culture and a sound operational model. Value creation for our network and membership must be at the core of operation.
• Change management: Prepare and lead the organization for needed change, creating clear direction and implementing change management strategies and communication that unite staff and board behind organizational development, enhanced value creation for members and partners, and achievement of strategic goals.
• Strategic partnerships and collaboration: Identify and form strategic partnerships and nurture collaborative relations with allies and donors. Convene inclusive conversations on global challenges and enhance the organization’s image by being active and visible and by working closely with other organizations.
• Financial viability: Develop resources and operational models sufficient to ensure the financial health of the organization. Responsible for fiscal management within the approved budget, ensuring maximum resource utilization, transparent budget monitoring and strengthening the organization’s financial capacities.
• Governance: Support and ensure the smooth functioning of our internal democratic structures including the General Assembly and the World Board by ensuring transparent processes and by providing, in a timely and accurate manner, all information necessary to make informed decisions.
• Operations and Human resources: Responsible for effective operations of the organization, for the hiring and retention of competent, qualified staff, and for signing contractual agreements on behalf of the organization. Working collaboratively with the management team and staff, ensuring a positive team spirit and working culture, and living our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in all that we do.

Education & Experience: 

Qualifications and experience
• Five or more years of senior management experience with a demonstrated ability to oversee, motivate and collaborate well with staff.
• Experience in change management in organizations.
• Exceptional relationship-building and fundraising capabilities, which includes building donor relationships, partnership development and a drive to deliver on commitments.
• Experience in advocacy and/or public affairs is of added value.
• Open, transparent and high integrity leadership in a very diverse, intercultural environment, able to convey a clear vision of the organization’s strategic future to staff and allies, build team-spirit, welcome feedback and lead as an agent of change.
•Familiarity with the organic agriculture and food sector and its challenges globally, including in low-income countries, combined with a high level of commitment to and passion for true sustainability in agriculture.
• Sound organizational skills including planning, program development, coordinating, delegating and task facilitation.
• Solid financial management skills and experience, including budget preparation, analysis, decision-making and reporting. Experience from project-based organizations is valuable.
• Excellent social and intercultural communication skills, methodological competence for facilitating participatory processes, and strong public speaking ability in international settings.
• Fluency in spoken and written English. Knowledge of German is desirable and additional languages are an advantage
•Ability and willingness to travel frequently.

Application Instructions: 

Please submit your completed ED Application Form converted into PDF format to

Any special requests regarding working conditions should be specified. References of current employers will only be contacted in consultation with the candidate. Applications shall be addressed to Karen Mapusua, the President of IFOAM – Organics International.

We aim to fill the position as soon as possible and therefore encourage early application for this role.
Shortlisted candidates will be interviewed by video call.