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Project Director, STOP Spillover

at DAI

Posted: 4/30/2020
Job Reference #: 5091

Job Description

DAI is an international development company. For more than 45 years, we have worked on the frontlines of international development, tackling fundamental social and economic development problems caused by inefficient markets, ineffective governance, and instability. Currently, DAI is delivering results that matter in some 80 countries. Our development solutions turn ideas into impact by bringing together fresh combinations of expertise and innovation across multiple disciplines. Our clients include international development agencies, international lending institutions, private corporations and philanthropies, and national governments.

United States

United States of America

Job Code:

STOP Spillover Project Director

DAI Global is seeking a Project Director for the anticipated five-year USAID-funded emerging zoonotic disease risk reduction project, STOP Spillover. The goal of the project is to reduce the vulnerability of select countries in Asia and Africa to emerging zoonotic diseases through strengthening capacities to (1) monitor prioritized emerging zoonotic disease threats as well as behaviors related to their spillover, amplification, and spread at high-risk animal-human interfaces; and (2) begin reducing the risk of spillover, amplification, and spread for prioritized emerging zoonotic disease threats in high-risk animal and human populations.

The Project Director will provide overall technical direction and leadership, and external engagement on project issues, including liaising with subcontractors, USAID missions, host country governments, international organizations, and other USAID implementing partners. The Project Director will provide technical support to project field programs and deliver management oversight, quality control, and results management to project activities. S/he will set a positive tone for the entire project and inspire staff to apply results-based approaches for delivery of quality services. The position is based in Bethesda, MD with international travel.


The Project Director will coordinate the provision of technical services and ensure a coordinated, integrated approach across the project objectives. Responsibilities specifically include:

  • Provide overall leadership, management, and strategic direction for large, complex, and multi-country interventions.

  • Manage a diverse team of technical, operational and management staff, ensuring high-performing and integrated cross-functional teams capable to deliver program results.

  • In conjunction with USAID and with input from key stakeholders, determine annual priorities, develop work plans, prepare annual reports and quarterly progress reports, and ensure the program responds to changing conditions and operating environments.

  • Lead strategy for partnership and engagement with in-country institutions (ministries, research organizations/academia, private sector, etc.) to build their capacities to reduce risk of spillover, amplification, and spread of emerging zoonotic viruses in animal and human populations and ensure sustainability and to ensure complementarity and collaboration with international organizations also working on risk reduction, such as FAO, WHO, CDC.

  • Serve as a primary liaison with USAID, the donor community, and other key stakeholders for the program at the central level. Ensure effective country-level relationships are established with relevant ministries (including agriculture, wildlife, forestry, among others), local partners, FAO, WHO, and others to jointly reduce risk of spillover, amplification, and spread of emerging zoonoses.

  • Ensure high-quality technical leadership and oversight is in place, including rapid mobilization of technical assistance to support country implementation interventions. Ensure capacity to mobilize limited outbreak response technical assistance as needed.

  • Work with M&E staff to design, implement, and monitor the quality of all program activities and timely delivery of deliverables to the client. Ensure a robust plan to track program data/results across locations and technical assistance activities to inform adjustments in program implementation.

  • Oversee program administration, implementation, and financial management to ensure program implementation aligns with budget allocations, internal policies, and USAID regulations.

  • Ensure that program results are proactively disseminated, and learnings are shared and incorporated to continuously improve.


  • An advanced degree in veterinary medicine, wildlife ecology, microbiology, public health, health administration, or a related field; DVM, MD, or PhD preferred.

  • Minimum of 10 years of progressively responsible experience in a senior level role leading complex development projects in developing countries (preferably Africa or Asia regions), or with centrally-funded USAID projects.

  • At least 5 years’ experience in addressing global health security, infectious disease prevention, and/or outbreak response activities.

  • Demonstrated experience with a mix of practical technical skills in risk reduction related topics, including surveillance, laboratory strengthening, biosecurity/biosafety, behavioral research, social behavior change, emergency planning and response, and/or workforce strengthening.

  • Has extensive experience working effectively with counterparts at various levels of government, as well as with non-governmental organizations, and international organizations such as FAO and WHO in managing international development assistance projects.

  • Proven leadership and management skills, including a track record of managing and coordinating high-performance teams across multiple program office locations and the provision of technical assistance, including the ability to coach, guide, and inspire the team members in their contributions to meeting program objectives.

  • Demonstrated experience leading capacity building for local actors in the public sector, providing capacity building assistance at individual and organizational levels.

  • Proven leadership in fostering collaborative learning and adaptive management, monitoring effectiveness, opportunities and challenges, and adapting implementation based on learning to achieve desired program outcomes.

  • Demonstrated knowledge management experience to collect, analyze, and disseminate learnings across countries and which contribute to the GHSA.

  • Excellent writing and communications skills in English.  French language skills desirable.