Chief of Party - FIRST

  • Senior-level, Full-time staff position
  • Posted on 13 May 2020

Job Description

Job Summary

The 5-year, USAID-funded Rwanda Facilitate Investment Required for Sustainable Export (FIRST) Activity, aims to increase agricultural exports through 1) facilitation of inclusive policy reforms using evidence-based analysis and strengthened advocacy capacity of the private sector organizations; and 2) support local actors (government and private sector) to attract, mobilize and direct public and private financing resources towards productive priority projects.

The Chief of Party (COP) will be responsible for providing overall management and direction to the FIRST Activity and will supervise all key personnel. She holds the primary responsibility for overall performance and compliance.

The COP and project team will be based in Kigali, Rwanda, and the position is contingent upon project award to Abt Associates.

Key Roles and Responsibilities

  • Responsible for the Activity’s overall performance and compliance. Responsible for meeting contractual obligations, producing deliverables and targets, meeting objectives, and achieving results as specified by USAID, in full compliance with Abt policies and procedures and USAID rules and regulations.
  • Oversee and lead the activity team in program implementation, performance management, monitoring evaluation and learning (MEL), reporting, deliverable submissions, strategic communication, and partner/subcontractor coordination.
  • Lead annual work plan development process and supervise the project’s technical assistance team to ensure a focus on core results, achievements of annual work plan and targets, and timely/effective implementation.
  • Assume final authority for technical, management, resource, and personnel decisions.
  • Lead integration of collaboration, learning, and adaptation (CLA), knowledge management, and advocacy strategies into the activity.
  • Serve as key liaison with USAID, government counterparts, and local partners/stakeholders, and as principle representative of the activity.
  • Monitor the progress and pace of implementation, ensuring that the full potential of the program is realized through the promotion of high quality work and internal control.
  • Clarify roles, delegate responsibilities to senior staff, and communicate expectations for work and contribution to project activities.
  • Direct the activities of the Abt Security Focal Points and/or Country Risk Manager and collaborate with the Global Security Office in the implementation and application of the Global Security Policy.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in business administration, finance, economics, agribusiness or related field
  • Minimum 10 years of relevant professional experience managing and implementing trade and investment projects specifically focusing on high value agricultural export crops
  • Minimum of 5 years of demonstrated experience in building, managing and supervising a team including substantial experience managing development programs of similar size
  • Chief of Party experience preferred
  • Demonstrated experience working effectively with government agencies, inter-governmental or government representatives, private sector and industry leaders, civil society counterparts, and other stakeholders, particularly at the regional level
  • Must have demonstrated experience addressing the regional agricultural development issues facing the greater East African region including a commitment to addressing gender equality in regional integration, trade, and nongovernment organizations
  • Sub-Saharan Africa/East African work experience required, Rwanda experience preferred
  • Understanding of and/or skills in CLA and/or using adaptive management techniques is a plus
  • Prior experience managing a USG activity of similar size and complexity, preferably for USAID, required
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Fluency in English required. Command of French preferred

About the Organization

Abt Associates is a global leader in research, evaluation and program implementation; driving innovation and measurable impact for more than 50 years. What sets us apart is our evidence-based and multi-disciplinary approach to solving tough challenges in health, social and environmental policy and international development.

Specific areas we work in include:

  • Health
  • Education and workforce development
  • Climate change and the environment
  • Food security and agriculture
  • Housing and communities
  • Survey and data collection


Abt is a mission-driven company with a staff of 2,600. Our focus is on using evidence and cutting-edge methods to improve the lives and economic well-being of people worldwide.

Similar Jobs