Deputy Director, Strategy and Technical Leadership

Democracy International, Inc.
  • Location
    Bethesda, Maryland
  • Sector
  • Experience
    Mid Career / Advanced
  • Posted
    Oct 30

Position description

Democracy International (DI) is seeking to hire a full-time Deputy Director, Strategy and Technical Leadership. As a member of the Strategy and Technical Leadership Team, this role will be based in DI's home office at Bethesda, Maryland. S/He may be expected to travel between 15 and 25% of their time, depending on business needs. Due to the ongoing global pandemic, work assignments are temporarily done remotely.


The ideal candidate must be a dynamic, experienced, highly motivated professional with a demonstrable record of success and proven enthusiasm for designing and implementing international development programs, preferably for democracy, human rights, and governance programs, and/or conflict transformation and peacebuilding programs, funded by USAID or the Department of State. S/he will provide expertise and lead cross-discipline and cross-functional teams in the development and execution of successful strategies to expand DI’s technical work, including through managing DI’s processes for identifying and tracking opportunities, developing proposals, and refining DI’s business development systems and procedures to ensure the highest quality standards and competitiveness. S/he will also contribute to and support internal learning processes that improve DI’s business development, enhance the company’s value propositions, and leverage innovative, evidence-based results into new programming and revenue. S/he is expected to be a mentor and to be open to learning and applying new concepts and ideas to address development challenges. The successful applicant will bring an excitement for the development of innovative programs and a willingness to engage with complex social and behavioral science concepts and their application to program design for democracy, human rights, governance, resilience, and conflict transformation. S/he will also bring a willingness to contribute to all aspects of program design to ensure and uphold DI’s commitment to quality.


Essential Responsibilities: 


The Deputy Director of Strategy and Technical Leadership will oversee strategic business development. As a member of the Strategy and Technical Leadership Team, s/he is expected to bring expertise in one or more of DI’s practice areas (politics, peace and resilience, governance, or monitoring, evaluation, and learning). Among other responsibilities, the Deputy Director will:


  • Work closely with the executive team, lead development and implementation of DI strategies for winning new work, development of new lines of work, and efforts to secure work from current and new clients;
  • Apply sectoral expertise to program design, including through leading design sessions for complex, multi-year international development programs; working closely with team members to support their successful program designs; and leading technical discussions regarding the application of innovative approaches to addressing democracy and development challenges;
  • Oversee successful deployment of DI processes working closely with DI strategy staff members, ensuring that team goals, objectives, and requirements are met and within budget;
  • Liaise with other teams, field offices, and senior leadership to bring technical, communications, and other resources to support business development;
  • Research, track, and analyze new business opportunities, competitive intelligence, and DI’s competitive positioning within the marketplace for USG and other donor grants and contracts;
  • Oversee accurate business pipeline and performance database to inform business development decisions and processes;
  • Manage design and implementation of business development plans for proposals and applications;
  • Provide business development expertise in positioning, capture planning, and proposal preparation for specific opportunities;
  • As necessary, serve as proposal manager, technical writer, or in another lead role on a proposal team, and participate in bid analysis and proposal review panels;
  • Coordinate processes and communicate across DI teams to ensure timely submission of high-quality proposals that are responsive to donor requirements and applicable regulations;
  • Ensure quality control across all proposals submitted to USAID and other funders;
  • Represent DI with USAID in written and verbal correspondence as required, including to submit bids;
  • Work with appropriate staff members to maintain data on past performance and corporate capacity, in order to provide timely information for proposal submissions worldwide;
  • Contribute to, share, and model the use of standardized business development processes and resources (training/capacity-building materials, guidelines, tools and templates, and online information);
  • Support and actively contribute to other corporate goals and priorities, as needed, including in thought leadership, innovation, and project management;
  • Manage DI outreach to existing and new partners, funders, and clients to maintain business relationships and build new relationships in support of business development efforts;
  • Support Company compliance with applicable contractual requirements, laws, regulations, policies and procedures at the procurement and contract award stage;
  • Represent DI externally at meetings with government and nongovernmental stakeholders;
  • Recruit and train DI Bethesda-based staff as needed.


  • Master’s degree in social sciences, such as international affairs, political science, conflict resolution, or related field;
  • Eight to 12 years of relevant professional experience;
  • Demonstrated experience writing proposals and/or applications for international development programs, preferably funded by USAID or the U.S. Department of State;
  • Excellent interpersonal, oral and written communication and negotiation skills;
  • Demonstrated experience collaborating with and leading teams to produce deliverables under tight deadlines and of outstanding quality;
  • Strong analytical skills; and
  • Experience in democracy, human rights, governance, conflict-mitigation, resilience, crime prevention, and/or similar programming.
  • Experience and familiarity with technical and cost application requirements of U.S. Government RFAs and RFPs and funding mechanisms of non-USG funders highly desirable;


Reporting and Supervision:

  • This position reports to the Senior Director, Strategy and Technical Leadership
  • Direct reports may include: the S&O Program Officer and Program Assistant


Environmental Conditions:

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Moderate noise (i.e. business office with computers, phone, printers, and moderate traffic).
  • Ability to work in a confined office space/area.
  • Ability to sit and/or stand at a computer desk for an extended period of time.
  • Ability to travel on long plane flights across several time zones and at irregular hours.


Physical Requirements Required to Perform Essential Responsibilities:

While performing the duties of this job the employee is regularly required to;

  • Stand, sit; talk, hear, use of hands and fingers, and perform repetitive motions to operate a computer and telephone keyboard.
  • Reach, stoop, or kneel, to adjust computer and/or telephone equipment.
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision requirements due to computer work.
  • Hearing abilities required due to telephone.
  • Light to moderate lifting is possible.
  • Travel will require moderate lifting, sitting for extended periods of time, overnight flights across multiple time zones;
  • Regular, predictable attendance is required; as business demands dictate.

Application instructions

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