Development Finance Advisor

Category: Full-time
Reports to: Senior Strategist, Enabler Partnerships
Location: Washington, D.C.
Effective: June 26, 2018

About Water.org

844 million people – about one in nine – lack access to safe water. 2.3 billion people don’t have access to a toilet. We are working every day to change this. We are Water.org. We’re here to bring water and sanitation to the world. We want to make it safe, accessible and cost-effective because we believe that water is the way to empowering a better life that we can all share in, worldwide. We are an international nonprofit organization based in Kansas City, Missouri that has positively transformed millions of lives around the world through access to safe water and sanitation. Founded by Gary White and Matt Damon, we have been pioneering market-driven financial solutions to the global water crisis for more than 25 years, giving women hope, children health and communities a future. 


Summary

The primary purpose of the newly formed Development Finance Advisor (DFA) role at Water.org is to strengthen and support the strategic vision of the International Programs team, and thus the organization, by securing, managing and partnering with global Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) to fuel organizational goals to reduce risk and mobilize capital into the Water & Sanitation Sector. Reporting into the practice area Enabler Partnerships (EP) Senior Strategist, the Development Finance Advisor will enable EP to track, optimize and leverage development finance flows, finance structuring expertise and development finance networks to address water and sanitation financing constraints from reaching Base of the Economic Pyramid communities, households and enterprises. The Development Finance Advisor will take on the responsibility for managing EP’s global DFI portfolio and pipeline, will foster partnerships, build coalitions, facilitate financing guarantees, introduce new blended finance models, and increase awareness of and use of innovative WSS finance models in the sector.

The Development Finance Advisor plays a pivotal and strategic role in identifying, building and managing multi-lateral and bi-lateral relationships at the global level as well as facilitating relationships at the local level which inform and serve into Water.org country plans. 

This is a highly visible and collaborative role within the Water.org team and will frequently work alongside the in-country leadership, International Programs team members, Strategic Development Officers, and our President and Co-founders.

Key responsibilities 

Strategy: Advance Water and Sanitation Financing through Relationships with Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) (60%)

Oversee development, execution, and sustained growth of key partnerships and priorities for impact globally and in regions, as requested. Key activities include, but are not limited to:

  • Play influential leadership role developing strategic global/local relationships including brokering investment into the sector, developing a pipeline of new instruments, guarantees and enhancements designed to remove barriers and unlock WSS finance.
  • Develop deep understanding of WSS strategy and programs (objectives, sub-sectors, geographies), including current investment portfolios and operating structures within DFIs relevant to Water.org priority geographies and global strategic engagement
  • Identify and further joint policy and practice opportunities with DFIs in common priority countries and regions.
  • Leverage DFI expertise, relationships network, and in-depth understanding of policy and practices to inform Water.org’s global and country capital mobilization strategies.
  • Participate in Water.org’s internal Capital Mobilization Team.
  • Present at key global and national WSS and DFI conferences

DFI Engagement Strategies (40%)

Demonstrate a personal drive for and embodiment of Water.org’s mission and leadership values that motivates and mobilizes effort to rapidly scale impact. Key activities include, but are not limited to:

  • Set annual fiscal year global DFI engagement strategies, milestones and management priorities; coordinate, collaborate and support country teams’ DFI strategies and relationships.
  • Lead regular multi-lateral and bi-lateral meetings as necessary to meet performance objectives.
  • Play a leadership role in conceiving, driving and advancing Water.org’s external conversations on strategies for capital mobilization through high level presentations and publishing.
  • Partner closely with internal country and headquarter teams to implement specific plans and financing deals. Support teams in close collaboration with finance, legal and other colleagues, including initial screening, investment structuring, due diligence and financial reviews.
  • Collaborate with the Chief Programs Officer and EP Senior Strategist to strengthen IP staff capability with respect to development finance concepts, tools, systems, and terminology. Ensure relevance & resonance in WO of DFI sector players/influencers to enable country teams to deliver against country goals. 

Management responsibility 

  • Individual contributor with no subordinates. Acts in capacity of a “lead expert.”  

This description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required. Some duties, responsibilities and activities may change or be assigned at any time with or without notice.

Skills and competencies 

  • Business Insight – Applying knowledge of business and the marketplace to advance the organization’s goals.
  • Communicates Effectively – Developing and delivering multi-mode communications that convey a clear understanding of the unique needs of different audiences.
  • Customer Focus – Building strong customer relationships and delivering customer-centric solutions.
  • Nimble Learning – Actively learning through experimentation when talking new problems, using both successes and failures as learning fodder.
  • Drives Results – Consistently achieving results, even under tough circumstances.
  • Collaborates – Building partnerships and working collaboratively with others to meet shared objectives.
  • Self-development – Actively seeking new ways to grow and be challenged using other formal and informal development channels.
  • Optimize Work Processes – Knowing the most effective and efficient processes to get things done, with a focus on continuous improvement.
  • Manages Ambiguity - Manages ambiguity by operating effectively, even when things are not certain or the way forward is not clear.
  • Instills Trust – Gaining the confidence and trust of others through honesty, integrity, and authenticity.
  • Financial Stewardship - Demonstrates fiscally responsible decision making as applicable to one’s role.
  • Strategic Mindset – Seeing ahead to future possibilities and translating them into breakthrough strategies

Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree required in relevant discipline; Master’s degree strongly preferred.
  • 10+ year of experience in structuring investments and developing partnerships for DFIs.
  • Thorough knowledge of strategy, operations, and priority setting mechanisms of one or more DFIs.
  • Knowledge of various loan, equity and guaranty structures
  • A mindset that guides and motivates the organization to explore new approaches and partners; and take risks that accelerate our organization’s strategy and initiatives.
  • Brokering negotiations expertise involving complex institutional relationships, financial transactions, public-private partnerships, and national and sub-national governments.
  • Work experience requiring effective support of a highly skilled and demanding client base, serving as counselor on ground-breaking, emerging strategic and financial issues in a complex and evolving policy environment.
  • Demonstrated ability to structure and lead institutional relationships, influence cross functional teams and distributed network of colleagues to gain the respect of others.
  • Demonstrated passion for the organization’s values with commitment to deliver results against the organization’s strategy and mission.
  • Ability to work with flexibility, efficiency, enthusiasm, and diplomacy both individually and as part of a team effort.

Travel Requirement 

  • This role has the expected travel requirement of approximately 40%, quarterly domestic travel with majority of travel being international.

Salary and benefits 

This position offers full-time benefits, including medical/dental insurance, life and disability insurance, retirement program and periodic review for merit and incentive pay based on organizational and personal achievement. 

Water.org is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to providing an inclusive environment. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender expression, gender identity, age, national origin, ancestry, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, pregnancy status, military and veteran status, genetic information, and any other status protected by law.  We provide qualified applicants and employees reasonable accommodation, when necessary, to enable individuals to complete the application process and/or perform the essential functions of the job.