Senior Director, Middle East & North Africa (MENA) Region - (Job #1755)

National Endowment for Democracy
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
  • Posted
    Oct 03

Position description


The National Endowment for Democracy (NED), a congressionally funded, private, nonprofit grant making organization that works to support freedom around the world, seeks a Senior Director for the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) regional program team. This position is based in Washington, D.C.


Position Summary:

The Senior Director, MENA serves as most senior institutional and recognized community-wide expert for the Middle East and North Africa region, which includes the Arabic speaking countries as well as Turkey, Iran and Afghanistan. Functions as the principal advisor to senior NED leadership and the regional board experts regarding strategies and programs for the region.  Responsible for the development and implementation of an institutional vision for the region that integrates key NED organizational and program goals, priorities, values and other factors. Applies exceptional political acumen as well as strong leadership and management skills.  Assesses, analyzes, acquires, and administers human, financial, material, and information resources in a manner that instills trust and accomplishes the Endowment’s mission in the assigned region. Develops a professional network with other organizations and identifies the internal and external politics that affect the work of the organization.



  • Develops and manages key relationships in the region and with other regional experts, both domestically and abroad.
  • Drives strategic planning for the region;
  • Oversees the development, assessment, and presentation of proposals for the region at quarterly Board meetings;
  • Conducts strategic field visits to the region;
  • Coordinates and oversees the regional staff’s interaction with NED’s core institutes;
  • Represents the region and occasionally the Endowment more broadly before the Board of Directors, the President, congressional committees, government agencies and other entities as needed;
  • Directs the work of the regional team, supervising and mentoring junior staff by providing guidance and advice on programmatic and administrative issues to include the development and maintenance of relationships with grantees, other organizations and individuals in the region;
  • Develops and implements strategic initiatives to further the Endowment’s mission.


  • Knowledge/Experience:
    • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field required, Master’s or Ph.D. preferred;
    • 15 to 20 years of applicable program experience;
    • 5-10 years at the NED Director level or external director equivalent preferred.


  • Other Qualifications: 
  • Recognized regional expertise on multiple countries within the region;
  • Fluency in Arabic required and facility with other local languages preferred;
  • In depth understanding of civil society issues and familiarity with civil society networks and individual activists in the region;
  • Proven record of accomplishment with respect to strengthening democratic institutions within the region to include in closed and/or post-conflict societies;
  • Authorized to work in the United States.


  • Competencies:
    • Excellent leadership, interpersonal, communication, and writing skills;
    • Superior political assessment skills;
    • Sound understanding of governmental and non-governmental relationships in Washington, D.C.;
    • Adept at managing relationships among diverse and at times competing groups centered on common goals;
    • Able to convey clear and convincing reasons for courses of action; listens effectively;
    • Possesses a firm grasp of domestic and regional policies and trends that affect the Endowment and its mission in assigned region;
    • Able to create consistently a positive, productive and collaborative work environment that fosters staff development.


Application instructions

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 To Apply:  Candidates must include a cover letter, resume, completed NED employment application, and contact information for three professional references.  Please send to [email protected], with Job #1755 – Sr Dir MENA - YOUR NAME in the subject line.  The NED is an Equal Opportunity Employer.  For more information, please visit our website at  Please, no phone call inquiries.



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