Job: Country Director – Health Alliance International (HAI) – Timor-Leste

Health Alliance International (HAI) is an international, non-governmental organization affiliated with the University of Washington. Its headquarter office is in Seattle, USA.  HAI has worked closely with the Ministry of Health (MoH) in Timor-Leste since the country’s independence in 2002, strengthening the national health system, particularly in the areas of Maternal and Newborn Care and Family Planning.

HAI is looking for its next Country Director in Timor-Leste. The successful applicant will be a dynamic leader and team builder who will guide the organization to new levels of excellence, purpose and impact.  This demanding role is best suited to an experienced development professional who sets high standards while possessing flexibility and sensitivity to effectively lead a diverse team of approximately 30 staff.  The Country Director will meaningfully engage with our MoH counterparts and maintain and cultivate strong collaborative relationships with donors and other stakeholders working in the health sector in Timor-Leste.

Job summary

The Country Director works closely with the Headquarter-based Director of Timor-Leste Programs (DTLP) to set the strategic vision and plan for how HAI will thrive while supporting the public health sector in Timor-Leste.  The Country Director is a highly skilled and engaged manager of people, programs and administrative systems. S/he plays the primary role of developing and maintaining close relationships with HAI’s key in-country partners: the MoH, donors, UN agencies, and other organizations working in the health sector in Timor-Leste. The Country Director must ensure that HAI’s strategic goals coherently and effectively respond to the needs of the Timor-Leste public health system. S/he must excel working in complex, low resource settings and effectively navigate evolving political, donor, and public health priorities.


The Country Director will provide overall field office leadership to achieve HAI’s technical and programmatic goals in Timor-Leste. By working closely with HAI’s HQ DTLP and the in-country Senior Management Team, the Country Director will guide the development of annual operating plans and long-term strategic goals for the HAI Timor-Leste program. Specific areas of responsibility include:

Program Quality & Development

  • Provide field office leadership to develop and deliver high quality health programs that align with donor mandates and MoH priorities.
  • Provide technical oversight of HAI’s existing maternal, child, newborn health programming and innovate for new programs that align with HAI’s mission and core values.
  • Present at relevant national and international conferences on HAI’s Timor-Leste programs, as opportunities arise

 Workforce Management:

  • Supervise HAI field staff including international staff, consultants and senior management staff employing culturally sensitive management strategies.
  • Provide continuous mentoring and support with a strong emphasis on capacity building for HAI’s national team members.
  • Promote a positive work culture and a team approach in a continuous learning environment.
  • Participate in the selection and hiring of national-level staff, expatriate staff and technical advisors.

Administrative Management

  • Ensure that organizational structures and systems comply with HAI HQ and donor rules and regulations, and that they support high quality and efficient program delivery.
  • Review and approve annual budgets in coordination with HQ DTLP and HQ grants and finance staff.  Assume overall responsibility for the effective management of in-country budgets.
  • Model and maintain positive collaboration between programmatic and administrative teams of HAI Timor-Leste to maximize the capacity of the organization to achieve its goals.
  • Work with HQ DTLP and senior field leadership to ensure that HAI field office policies and procedures are compliant with HAI HQ policies, Timor-Leste law, donor mandates, and that policies are contextually relevant, continuously followed and appropriately updated.

External Relationship Management and Donor Development: 

  • Develop and maintain a high level of understanding of MoH and donor priorities, country plans and local funding initiatives.
  • Seek new funding opportunities focused on building the capacity of Timor-Leste’s public sector health system.
  • Work with the HQ DTLP and other HQ and field staff to design and draft compelling grant proposals.
  • Strengthen existing partnerships and cultivate new relationships to build future collaborative programs.
  • Serve as a compelling and effective advocate and ambassador for HAI, raising the organization’s visibility.
  • Meet regularly with existing donors to discuss progress, successes and challenges and provide continuous feedback on donor-funded programs.

Reporting, Monitoring and Evaluation:

  • Draft and submit required reports to donors, MoH, and other stakeholders.
  • Provide direct supervision to HAI Senior Program Performance Manager to assure that effective systems are in place to assess program quality and effectiveness and conduct operations research as needed.
  • Develop external communications as advantageous to promote HAI programs and their impact.

Required Qualifications

  • 5+ years of management-level experience overseeing complex grant portfolios in a low resource settings
  • Proven history of effective organizational leadership, people management, and team building
  • Experience with health program implementation in a low resource setting
  • Experience in financial management, forecasting and budgeting
  • Excellent knowledge of and technical expertise in public health systems, including maternal, newborn and child health and family planning
  • Masters of Public Health, or other relevant graduate degree
  • Demonstrated fluency in speaking, reading and writing English
  • Proficiency using Internet search engines, Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint and similar office applications

Strongly Preferred Qualifications:

  • A demonstrated understanding of Timor-Leste’s public health sector
  • Ability to speak Tetum, Indonesian and/or Portuguese

Interested candidates can contact Susan Thompson, HAI Director of Timor-Leste Programs at for more information, or send cover letter and CV with subject line “CD-TL” to

The closing date to submit applications is Saturday, September 30, 2017. Only short listed candidates will be contacted.  This position is open to Timorese nationals.

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