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Chief of International Operations (CoIO)

Room to Read
Location: San Francisco, USA
Last Date: April 4, 2011
Email:  (Reference:


Position Description
Room to Read
Chief of International Operations (CoIO)

Room to Read seeks to transform the lives of millions of children in developing countries by focusing on literacy and gender equality in education. Working in collaboration with local communities, partner organizations and governments, Room to Read develops literacy skills and a habit of reading among primary school children, and supports girls to complete secondary school with the relevant life skills to succeed in school and beyond.

Room to Read is non-governmental, non-religious and works with many local NGOs and community-based organizations to implement programs. Room to Read has operations in Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Laos, Nepal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, and Zambia - countries with a desperate lack of resources to educate their children. Since inception, Room to Read's worldwide team has impacted over 4 million children by constructing more than 1,100 schools, establishing over 9,200 libraries, publishing 433 new children's book titles in 11 local languages, and rewarding over 8,700 girls with long-term, holistic scholarships.
Headquartered in San Francisco, Room to Read has an annual budget of approximately US$30 million, a global staff of 380, and regional and/or program offices located in New Delhi, Pretoria, Colombo, Dhaka, Ho Chi Minh City, Kathmandu, Lusaka, New Delhi, Pretoria, Phnom Penh, and Vientiane. Room to Read’s long-term goal is to help 10 million children to gain the lifelong gift of education.
For more information, please visit .

The Chief of International Operations (CoIO) is responsible for leadership and management of program operations and information technology teams at the headquarters office in San Francisco as well as regional teams who oversee country programs and operations. Working closely with Regional Directors, this position oversees the annual planning and implementation of Room to Read’s operations worldwide as well as expansion into new geographies. The CoIO directly manages two Regional Directors and four global office staff as well as indirectly manages a team of six professionals in the San Francisco office. Reporting directly to the Chief Executive Director, the CoIO is a member of the management team and has regular interactions with the Board of Directors and Room to Read’s international management team.

Global Program Operations
• Oversee Regional Directors to ensure day-to-day management and oversight of all of Room to Read’s programs and operations
• Work closely with senior program staff to develop and implement plans to “operationalize” the current five year Strategic Plan 2010 - 2014
• Oversee the development of annual plans by all international offices and work closely with Regional Directors and the Chief Program Officer to set the annual strategic direction for the country offices
• Ensure regional and country team reporting is conducted timely and accurately, including monitoring of annual budgets
• Work closely with the CFO and Chief Talent Officer to ensure timely roll-out of all HR and Finance initiatives at the regional and country levels
• Participate in planning the annual management team conferences for Global Office, Regional and Country senior staff, which serves as an opportunity for training and idea sharing
• Serve as a resource to the regional and country teams for problem-solving and crisis management

Operations, Business Processes and IT
• Manage the flow of information to the development team to assist in foundation, corporate and individual fundraising efforts
• Support and enhance global staff’s ability to perform their jobs by ensuring clear processes and systems are in place that facilitate efficient work management and communication
• Work with the program team to codify best practices so they can be shared across existing countries of operation and rolled out in new areas
• Oversee the Information Technology team and spearhead the development of technology planning ensuring IT processes are aligned with the business and program objectives

New Country and Partnership Responsibilities
• Oversee researching of new countries for operation, including writing detailed country-level reports and business plans/funding proposals
• Oversee study trips to potential countries of operation and operational launch of new Room to Read locations, including hiring of key management staff
• Explore and make recommendations on potential partnerships with other NGOs

Communication, Strategic and External-Facing
• Keep management team, Board of Directors, and staff up to date on all program operations and expansion related information
• Participate on management team to develop and implement strategy for Room to Read’s growth in general
• Stay informed about research and trends in the area of international education and development and recommend improvements to our systems accordingly
• Network with other non-profits running similar programs to find areas of collaboration and knowledge sharing
• Represent Room to Read by attending and speaking at various forums and advocate for the importance of our educational work

• Twelve years of relevant professional experience, with a minimum of 5+ years in a senior management capacity
• Professional experience in international development
• Ability and desire to travel internationally, likely 30-40% of the time
• Prior experience living and/or working in a developing country
• Prior success working closely with and building relationships with staff, partnerships, donors and a Board of Directors
• A management style that is outcome-oriented, but flexible, and that respects the capabilities and independence of staff, while providing them with a clear sense of direction
• Excellent interpersonal skills – a capacity to listen well and inspire trust
• Action-oriented – an ability to move from ideas to action
• An ability to communicate effectively and professionally with a diverse range of people from different environments, sectors, and society
• A masters degree in a related field of study, e.g., MA, MBA or MPA in Nonprofit Management
• Effectiveness in working or volunteering in a non-profit organization that is focused on maintaining high quality work and low overhead
• Proven track record of achieving results
• Prior experience in a fast-paced, growth-oriented global or regional organization
• Ability to juggle multiple priorities simultaneously and take initiative

To be successful as a member of the Room to Read team, you will also:
• Have a passion for our mission and a strong desire to impact an up-and-coming non-profit organization
• Be an innovative and creative thinker; you’re not afraid to try something new and inspire others to do so
• Have a very high level of personal and professional integrity and trustworthiness
• Have a strong work ethic and require minimal direction
• Work well independently as well as part of a team
• Thrive in a fast-paced and fun environment

Room to Read is an Equal Opportunity Employer and encourages candidates of all backgrounds to apply for this position. The Bridgespan Group, a nonprofit organization, serves diverse organizations and is committed to building high-performing teams that mirror the communities we serve. Please send a cover letter and resume to:  Additionally, please indicate in your cover letter where you this job posted on


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