Chief Capacities Officer

at  Natural Resources Defense Council Inc

Washington, District of Columbia, USA - 20005

Start DateExpiry DateSalaryPosted OnExperienceSkillsTelecommuteSponsor Visa
Immediate08 Jul, 2022Not Specified08 Apr, 2022N/ATeam Building,Climate Change,It,Sustainable Cities,Leadership,Endangered Species,Water,Lessons,Functional Management,Collaboration,Climate,Knowledge Management,Wilderness,Strategy,Health,Interpersonal Skills,Communication SkillsNoNo
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NRDC is a non-profit environmental advocacy organization. We use law, science, and the support of 3.1 million members and online activists to protect the planet’s wildlife and wild places and to ensure the rights of all people to clean air, clean water, and healthy communities. NRDC was founded in 1970 and our people helped write some of America’s bedrock environmental laws, including the Clean Water Act and many of the implementing regulations. Today, our team of more than 700 lawyers, scientists, economists, policy advocates, communications experts, and others work across the United States and the globe from our offices in Bozeman, Montana; Chicago; New York; San Francisco; Santa Monica; Washington, D.C.; and Beijing.
NRDC is seeking a Chief Capacities Officer to work with the Executive team from any of our US offices.


A newly created role aimed at increasing NRDC’s internal effectiveness and external impact, the chief capacities officer (CCO) will have overall strategic and operational responsibility for all of our capacity areas, including Center for Policy Advocacy (CPA), Communications, Science, and the Environment, Equity & Justice Center. This new position will leverage the core capabilities of NRDC, situated within each center of excellence, against the policy goals set by the organization, strategically deploying NRDC capacity resources. The CCO will be internally and externally focused, serving as a proxy for the president at various external events in addition to fundraising responsibilities in partnership with Development.

Capacities Strategy and Management

  • Work with and support the team at NRDC, defining, building, and delivering NRDC’s capacity to achieve the greatest results against our organizational goals.
  • Co-chair NRDC’s Advocacy Committee, which helps decide and drive advocacy goals for the organization (with the chief program officer serving as the other co-chair).
  • Oversee the following core advocacy capabilities and centers of excellence: Communications; CPA; Science Office; and Environment, Equity & Justice Center.
  • Help set NRDC’s policy agenda in consultation with the CEO and Advocacy Committee; collaborate extensively with the chief program officer to oversee and coordinate NRDC’s advocacy work and to decide on how to allocate NRDC resources to support its top program priorities; determine key objectives and measures of success to ensure the organization can deliver on its goals; and engage a full range of stakeholders, from the environmental justice movement to labor unions, commercial actors, faith-based groups, and beyond in the pursuit of NRDC’s strategy.
  • Aim to ensure our capacities work focuses on the interlinked challenges of environmental inequality, racial and social injustice, and economic insecurity, in collaboration with the Equity Center.
  • Attract, develop, mentor, and retain high-performance team members, empowering them to elevate their level of responsibility, span of control, and performance.
  • Provide leadership in development of inter-team communication and cohesiveness, sustaining culture and supporting staff during a period of rapid organizational growth.
  • Work with staff to develop systems that ensure consistent, high-quality project management.
  • Champion equity, diversity, and inclusion by role-modeling values-based leadership principles and centering this in decision-making.

Fundraising and Representation

  • As an external representative and ambassador of NRDC, play a leading role in setting the agenda and driving outcomes for our priority campaigns.
  • Position NRDC to be a credible and effective force from the grassroots community levels to the federal and international political sphere.
  • Serve as an internal and external thought leader, as well as a proxy for the president and CEO at various events.
  • Work in conjunction with the chief development officer to fundraise and deliver on development goals.

Knowledge Management

  • Help ensure the quality of NRDC’s knowledge products.
  • Develop the necessary systems and tools to better support the collection and sharing of knowledge that is generated by our capacity areas, in collaboration with Programs and the Strategy unit.
  • Ensure that key learnings from all parts of NRDC’s work are documented, celebrated, and evaluated for lessons learned, in collaboration with the Strategy unit.
  • Work collaboratively with the senior management team to integrate priorities across our CPA, Communications, Science, and Equity teams.


NRDC is working to achieve a vision of a more inclusive, sustainable, and prosperous world—one in which we are standing up for climate, nature, health, and equity. To meet our most pressing environmental challenges, it is building ambitious solutions to fight climate change; protect endangered species and wilderness; eliminate toxic chemicals in the air, food, and water; create a roadmap for sustainable cities; and engage millions of people in the movement for a healthier world. This is an exceptional opportunity for a dynamic, collaborative, and inspirational leader. Our first chief capacities officer (CCO) will be thoroughly committed to NRDC’s mission and strategy, and will bring demonstrated leadership, strategy, and relationship management experience and strong demonstrated success managing funder relationships.

  • Leadership and Strategy: The ideal candidate will be a credible and experienced organizational leader who drives organizational results to ensure NRDC’s effectiveness toward its future vision, goals, and impact. The candidate will have developed and operationalized strategies that have taken an organization through change to the next stage of development and growth.
  • Communication and Influence: As a voice/advocate for NRDC, the CCO will have strong verbal and written communication skills. The CCO will be a persuasive, credible, and articulate communicator with excellent interpersonal skills, who will be well regarded by partners with whom ¬have worked. Preferably, this person will have served as an effective and well-recognized spokesperson for mission-driven causes at the national or global level.
  • Team Building and Development: The successful candidate will have recruited, managed, and developed a strong team of staff. This individual will have deep experience in cross-functional management since the CCO will serve as a “player/coach” to motivate and mentor their team.

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Min:N/AMax:5.0 year(s)

Human Resources/HR

HR / Administration / IR





Washington, DC, USA