Senior Operations Manager, Economics & Global Climate

With world attention on both the environment and the economy, Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) is where policymakers and business leaders turn for win-win solutions. By focusing on strong science, uncommon partnerships and market-based approaches, we tackle urgent threats with practical solutions. We are one of the world’s largest environmental organizations, with more than two million members and a staff of approximately 700 scientists, economists, policy experts, and other professionals around the world. We operate in 22 geographies with unique projects running across four programs. You will be part of a vibrant workplace where innovation and results are a way of life.


EDF envisions a world in which people from all backgrounds and experiences feel connected to the environmental challenges we face and are engaged in creating durable, equitable solutions. We seek talented candidates who share our Core Values of Respect, Results, Innovation, Optimism, and Integrity, and support our Commitment to Diversity.  

Overall Function


The Senior Operations Manager will report to the Vice President for Operations and work closely with the Chief Economist, other members of the team, and managers and directors of other programs. The Senior Operations Manager will be responsible for the oversight, integration, and overall management of the operations, human resources, development, and budget of the Economics and Global Climate Cooperation (EGCC) Program. As the primary lead for ensuring there are effective structures and processes in place to achieve the program’s environmental and human goals, the incumbent will oversee business and operations staff; act as the Chief Economist’s representative with internal stakeholders, program leadership, and external partners (including donors and board members) as appropriate; and oversee the completion of special projects for the team.


Primary Responsibilities


Operations, Human Resources & Financial Oversight - Ensure there are effective structures and processes in place to achieve the program’s goals, overseeing the effectiveness of operations across the EGCC Program


• Oversee the program’s budget and finances, including the management of the program financial analyst staff, ensuring program leaders and Corporate Finance have accurate and timely information regarding the program’s financial standing

• Oversee operational team (finance managers, program coordinators, and administrators) and identify needed training and mentoring

• Foresee budget gaps and work with program leadership to resolve them

• Oversee building of staff and management capacity through training, mentoring, and experiential learning opportunities, and enhancement of the team function of the program’s administrative staff

• Oversee the creation of a safe team environment that fosters communications and encourages on-going development and mentoring for all program staff. Ensure that all senior staff support and assist in this effort

• Work across EDF’s departments (e.g., finance, IT, HR) to enhance and improve core organizational business functions for the EGCC Program 

• Participate as part of an operations peer group in problem solving, implementing best practices, and providing back-up and support for one another as needed

• Work as the main liaison with HR for new hires, and as requested for other issues (such as new EDF HR initiatives) 

• Participates in advancing EDF diversity, equity, and inclusion goals in which people from all backgrounds and experiences feel connected, included, and empowered to address the environmental and organizational challenges in alignment with EDF values


Strategic Planning and Overall Coordination - Ensure adequate long-term strategic planning and internal communication and coordination across the program’s leadership


• Oversee regular review of overall program progress and assist the EGCC Leadership team in identifying needed changes in strategy, resource allocation, tactics, and staff development 

• Work with senior staff to implement a system to track progress towards overall milestones

• Facilitate communication among members of the EGCC Leadership Team, setting agendas for regular meetings and identifying, teeing up and resolving critical issues

• Conduct additional communication and coordination activities as needed to enhance programmatic synergies

• Oversee full program communication, shared acknowledgement of program victories and esprit de corps through all program staff calls, annual retreats, and other means

• Contribute to performance evaluation process by providing feedback to program managers

• Manage program’s longer-term strategic planning with relevant staff leaders, developing outputs and materials for both program-level and EDF-wide strategic planning efforts


Development and Board Stewardship - Advance opportunities to raise significant gifts and maintain important donor relationships

• Ensure that fundraising proposals and reports are prepared in an accurate, timely and compelling way 

• Participate in donor engagement strategies, review appropriate donor proposals and reports, review all donor proposal budgets and financial reports

• Ensure that Board-related talking points and presentations are compelling and accurate, as needed

• Maximize fundraising opportunities through a program-wide system for donor cultivation in partnership with leadership staff in Development

• Oversee the formation and maintenance of compelling and consistent aspirational plans across all major initiative areas of EGCC, ensuring major initiative areas have multiple year budgets and milestones and strategies in partnership with programs, Development and Finance.

• Manage program interactions with the Economics Advisory Council and other advisory committees; develop and recommend compelling agenda/content; ensure timely follow-up

• Work in partnership with Development leadership to identify and remove roadblocks to effective fundraising for EGCC, including by improving processes and implementing staff trainings

• Guide EGCC project managers and those providing project management support on best practices around development



• Must possess outstanding strategic thinking, planning and communication skills and be an innovative leader who demonstrates collaborative teamwork, flexibility, adaptability, and creativity as well as program management skills that yield successful outcomes

• 8+ years of applicable senior management and leadership experience

• Ability to anticipate needs and requirements of executive leadership and take proactive steps to meet them.

• Demonstrated experience managing staff, leading complex projects, and developing strong working relationships with staff

• Proven track record in overseeing a complex, multimillion-dollar budget and its corresponding fundraising goals

• Demonstrates self-awareness, cultural competency and inclusivity, and ability to work with colleagues and stakeholders across diverse cultures and backgrounds

• Ability to build and manage relationships, to work with colleagues and partners of varied backgrounds and experience; and to interact with a variety of constituencies with a high-level of diplomacy and discretion

• Proven ability to make decisions and take prompt action to resolve problems and take advantage of opportunities

• Demonstrated ability to work both effectively within teams and independently

• Solid business and financial acumen and analytical skills with an ability to present financial, strategic planning, and performance management issues concisely

• Keen attention to detail and a high level of organization

• Excellent written and oral communication skills

• A professional background and content area knowledge in climate and energy issues, environmental equity issues, corporate partnerships, and economic and market-based solutions to environmental challenges is strongly encouraged

Environmental Defense Fund is an equal opportunity employer where an applicant's qualifications are considered without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other basis prohibited by law.