Job Vacancy – Executive Director

  Duma Works wrote this on
March 5, 2020 | No Comments


About Akili Dada

Akili Dada is a feminist, girls and young women leadership incubator based in Nairobi Kenya working across East Africa. We work alongside adolescent girls and young women cognizant of their agency and inherent capacity to create and implement solutions to the challenges that their communities face. Our investment lies in with programming that intervenes at critical and potentially catalytic periods of transition for adolescent girls and young women – primary to secondary school, secondary to tertiary education, professional career and young adulthood – to propel them into effective change agents for the Continent. By selecting from and building the capacity of some of Africa’s most innovative young women, we are meeting the urgent need for both more African women in leadership as well as the overarching need for creative and empathetic leadership that holds justice at its core.
Our vision: A world in which African women leaders are actively participating in key decision-making processes across sectors
Our mission: To nurture transformative leadership in girls and young women from underprivileged backgrounds to meet the urgent need for more African women in leadership.
We apply a girl-centered approach to educating and cultivating leadership in adolescent girls and young women. This is executed through four key strategies to nurture growth and meaningful impact:
  • Financial investment: We offer long-term* financial support to girls and young women, effectively bridging the gap of access to financial resources which often bars them from accessing opportunities.
  • Leadership development: We build the capacity of girls and young women, equipping them with the internal resources, personal support and experiential learning necessary to build leadership experience and track record.
  • Feminist Movement Building & Advocacy: We convene girls and young women facilitating training, alliance building and networking to enable them to organize and advocate with decision-makers. We deliberately amplify girls and young women’s voices using our platforms to highlight the issues that are critical to them while raising the profile of their contributions to Africa’s development.
  • Mentorship: We facilitate the space and community for girls and young women to learn from role models and female leaders. We intentionally foster a culture of sisterhood – ensuring that they build support systems for themselves for the long term.

From individual dream to collective reality:

Akili Dada continues to co-author a number of great life-changing stories with remarkable girls and young women who are positively impacting the African continent. A summary of our impact to date includes:
  • 163 Comprehensive Scholarships awarded to academically gifted girls from underserved backgrounds (2005 to date)
  • A 100% graduation rate of Akili Dada scholars who complete their high school education and transition to institutions of higher learning locally and abroad.
  • Over 530 young women student leadership aspirants trained from public universities across the country (2014 to date).
  • Journeying with 150 university students for three years to prepare them for leadership and the job market.
  • A two year journey with 30 young women community leaders in Kilifi, Kisumu and Tharaka Nithi counties to incubate and seed their initiatives.
  • Approximately 64,000$ in seed grants awarded to young women social entrepreneurs and innovators (2013-2017)
  • Over 45,000 individuals impacted through girl and young women leaders social change initiatives.
  • Journeying with 40 young women drawn from 20 women rights organization in Kenya and Tanzania seeking to ignite the feminist movement in the two countries. Through the initiative, the 20 organizations have access to grants of $25,000 that the young women in the program will use to implement projects of their design in communities of their choosing (in agreement with their organization leadership).

Akili Dada Executive Director’s Job Description

  • Job Title: Executive Director
  • Location: Nairobi, with frequent travel
  • Reports to: Akili Dada Board
  • Direct Reports: Deputy Executive Director, Finance Manager, Programs Manager, Grants and Executive Associate.

Executive Director’s Role:

We seek to hire an Executive Director to continue carrying the vision of Akili Dada and significantly accelerate the goal of having more African women leaders in key decision-making spaces across sectors. The Executive Director will help guide a powerful team of staff dedicated to serving girls and young women from underserved backgrounds. In addition, they will find and access new sources of funding to grow the organization. Externally, this leader will advance the profile and influence of Akili Dada by promoting girls and young women as experts in their issues and in the various spaces they occupy.
The Executive Director will be responsible for the overall success of Akili Dada including managing and executing both internal and external aspects of the organization.

The Executive Director’s key responsibilities include:

  • Refine and ensure high quality delivery of Akili Dada programs.
  • Manage the engagement of the Board and other governance structures to ensure regular communication and feedback with the Board.
  • Inspire and manage a high performing, value-driven team devoted to Akili Dada’s mission.
  • Ensure a robust learning, monitoring and evaluation system that allows for deep learning for the organization.
  • Manage relationships with other NGOs and other stakeholders to foster partnership and collaboration.
  • Design creative ways to elevate the visibility of the organization to various audiences.
  • Provide key leadership for a fundraising plan towards organizational sustainability.
  • Position the organization as a thought leader for learning about and support for girls and young women.

Candidate Profile

Akili Dada seeks a fierce feminist leader who is innovative, dedicated and passionate about African women Leadership. The successful candidate will bring a passion for girls and young women’s rights, an understanding of our wider policy and operational context and a drive for organizational excellence. The candidate should have a deep understanding of the ecosystem including girl centered programming, the social enterprise sector and feminist movement building and advocacy. The successful candidate will have strong interpersonal and relationship building skills. The candidate will have the ability to create and execute organizational strategy including fundraising, branding, financial management and offer oversight for program implementation.
Additionally, the candidate’s background will demonstrate a commitment to learning, assessment of programs and a passion for advancing the well being of girls and young women. Personal lived experiences that have informed the candidate’s journey so far are an added advantage.

The successful candidate will ideally:

  • Be a self-identified feminist who is passionate about girls and young women.
  • Possess experience in senior leadership, including demonstrated ability to manage and grow an organization, program or initiative focused on girls and women’s rights.
  • Have a proven record in guiding a diverse set of stakeholders, Board and experience working with donors.
  • Exhibit deep program knowledge and expertise in, and passion for, issues related to the promotion of girls ‘and young women rights.
  • Have a passion for supporting movement building and advocacy, which centers on girls and young women.
  • Have the ability to creatively design and oversee implementation of multiple strategies for girl-centered programming.
  • Demonstrate a good understanding of organizational development; including programs management, Monitoring &Evaluation, developing teams and fundraising.
  • Have a proven fundraising track record, including cultivating diverse short- and long-term donor relationships.
  • Possess exceptional communication skills, both verbal and written.
  • Possess excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to facilitate processes and build consensus.
  • Have strong team building experience and the ability to both foster a positive internal culture and collaborate with a diverse audience across the globe.
  • Be curious and articulate with an enthusiasm for the role of spokesperson and a willingness to pitch in on specific program related tasks.
  • Demonstrate passion combined with empathy, humility and sense of humor always a plus.
  • Have lived experiences that resonate with the Akili Dada’s target audience.

The role and responsibility of the successful candidate/leader

1. Strategy Setting

  • The ability to drive strategy and articulate an inspiring vision for Akili Dada both internally and externally.
  • An innovative and creative mindset to developing new ideas that will stretch the organization and push the boundaries of keeping girls and young women at the Centre of our work.
  • The ability to create realistic goals and implementation plans that are achievable and successful.
  • Being alive and responsive to context and trends in girls and women movements and involving the organization in the various processes that exist or arise.
  • A knack for using data to inform decision making on Akili Dada programming and engagement with various stakeholders.

2. Executing for Results

  • The ability to set clear and challenging goals for continuous improvement of the organization.
  • The ability to adapt nimbly and lead others through intricate situations.
  • A leader with high degree of integrity and foresight in their approach to making decisions.
  • The ability to act in an accountable, transparent and consistent manner while always considering what is best for Akili Dada and her constituents.
  • The ability to manage a large budget with multiple funders.
  • The ability to fundraise and friend raise for the furtherance of the organization’s mission.

3. Team Leadership

  • Ability to manage performance by attracting and recruiting talent, motivating the team, including direct and indirect reports.
  • Ability to delegate effectively, celebrate diversity within the team and widely viewed as a strong developer of others.
  • Ability to cultivate followership and exhibit a steadfast resolve and relentless commitment to higher standards
  • A leader who is self- aware; leads by example and drives the organization’s performance with an attitude of continuous improvement by being open to feedback and self-improvement.

4. Influence and Relationships

  • Builds strong relationships with others.
  • Demonstrates strong emotional intelligence and an ability to communicate clearly and compellingly.
  • An ability to inspire trust in others, is charismatic and passionate in their beliefs.
  • Shares the spotlight and visibly celebrates and supports the success of the team.
  • Keeps the organization mission and vision front and center while nurturing followership beyond individual personality.

This is a full-time position with a competitive remuneration package, which includes health and life insurance, retirement benefits as well as an allowance for professional development.


To apply online click here

Deadline for receiving applications: Monday, 09 March 2020


* You will receive a confirmation email from [email protected] and an alert to take a basic screening test over SMS or online. The email with the test may not arrive immediately. Please be patient. The email/SMS test will typically be 5-8 questions to help us understand your background. Regular SMS rates apply to the test.

If you apply and don’t meet these minimum qualifications, we will not be able to move forward with your application.

Posted in Jobs Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,