Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs

Freetown, Sierra Leone

Reference Number (optional): 

Deputy Country Director / SBC Advisor

Classified title: Sr. Program Officer

Role/Level/Range: ACRP/04/MF

Starting Salary Range:  Commensurate with Experience

Employee group: Full Time

Employee subgroup: Exempt

Position Type : New

Schedule: Monday-Friday/37.5 hrs.

Location: Freetown, Sierra Leone

The Senior Program Officer provides technical, programmatic, and administrative assistance to one or more programs and leads the development and implementation of discreet program activities independently. The Senior Program Officer may supervise and mentor staff. S/he will lead technical work and center-wide initiatives independently. S/he will lead proposal development and contribute to strategic partnership development, with support.

As Deputy Country Director/SBC Advisor, s/he will ensure integration of various and effective SBC approaches to reach project goals and deliverables and provide the following:

  • High-quality data used to inform risk communication programming around priority zoonotic diseases;
  • Capacity of the Government of Sierra Leone and key Global Health Security Agenda partners to coordinate, design and implement high-quality risk communication around priority zoonotic diseases increased; and
  • Function systems for engaging communities on priority zoonotic diseases and epidemic response established.

Performance is measured in each of the areas below (program management, people management, technical work, and professional and organizational growth) with five criteria:

  • Quantity of Work
  • Quality of Work
  • Initiative, Problem Solving & Innovation
  • Interaction with Others
  • Communication

 Performance of staff who supervise other staff will also be measured in:

  • Staff Development
  • Utilization and Allocation of Resources
  • Organizational Effectiveness

Essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following. Other duties may be assigned.

Program Management

  • Lead technical areas, larger activity/ies and/or programs independently
    • Envision, design and initiate new program activities according to a larger program goal
  • Manage country programs with support
    • Produce and edit documents, work plans, reports, and presentations
    • Monitor budgets and make strategic decisions to reallocate funding according to strategic priorities
    • Act as liaison for consultant activities, ensuring statement of work, contract and deliverables are in place
    • Initiate, track and monitor procurements, contracts, work plans and other administrative and programmatic documents
    • Work closely with finance and administrative staff to ensure timely and compliant spending
    • Maintain frequent, open, ongoing communication with program team members in all locations (offsite, in headquarters, and internationally)
    • Liaise with internal and external partners
    • Adhere to JHU, CCP and donor rules, regulations and policies
    • Upload and save deliverables on relevant knowledge management platforms
    • Identify and address STTA needs independently
    • Work closely with research to routinely review program performance data and initiate adaptations to program management and implementation

People Management

  • Supervise staff with support as required
    • Orient and train new staff members
    • Conduct regular (at least quarterly) check ins and annual performance reviews with all supervisees
    • Identify and recommend appropriate professional development opportunities for supervisees
    • Provide coaching and mentoring to promote continued growth and improvement among supervisees and other staff
  • Oversee and ensure the quality of work produced by staff or team.
  • Manage group work and effective team functioning independently; includes identifying and filling staffing gaps and independent contractor identification and hiring.
  • This position may not have official supervisory duties; s/he will engage in coaching and mentoring of staff.
  • Operate with compliance to all JHU supervisory policy.

Technical Work

  • Lead and manage technical work independently, including the development of strategies, toolkits, communication materials, scripts, job aides, needs assessments, etc.
    • Generate and envision new activities, ideas, frameworks, and strategies that further high-level goals
    • Use tools, processes, best-practices and colleague review to ensure all products and documents are of the highest quality possible
    • Provide information to others about the quality of work. This includes raising concerns about errors, omissions, and poor quality products to the staff member responsible for that work, and requesting revision of work that is not high quality.
    • In collaboration with research and evaluation division, contribute to design and implementation of research plans and activities
  • Lead in-country technical activities, including trainings, workshops, and program support, independently
  • Demonstrate technical expertise in relevant technical areas (i.e. SBC, knowledge management, health areas, etc.)
  • Demonstrate high level technical communication, including writing reports, creating and giving presentations, and facilitating trainings or group discussions

Professional and Organizational Growth

  • Lead proposal development (technical, budget, coordination) with support as required
  • Contribute to strategic partnership development with support
  • Represent JHU and CCP at relevant external meetings and events
    • May include delivering technical presentations, networking, relationship building, and initiate and follow through with opportunities for collaboration
  • Stay abreast of technical updates
  • Professionally engage and collaborate with other programs across the Center
  • Recognize and address factors that might strategically impact a program or the Center, and propose solutions to appropriate staff members
  • Proactively seek opportunities to expand leadership and management skills
    • Complete at least two JHU training courses related to job duties per year. For supervisors, this should include completing CCP HR’s recommended core courses in the JHU Supervisory Training Program within two years of taking on official supervisory duties
  • Request or initiate quarterly check-in meetings with supervisor to assess performance, strengths and areas for improvement in your current position, and establish professional goals
  • Identify opportunities for bringing new skills into the Center, including attending JHU courses and seminars, conferences, other external trainings etc.

Specific duties & responsibilities: S/he will oversee the SBC technical aspects of the program, ensure there is a robust monitoring, evaluation and learning agenda for real time decision making and to feedback learnings to the wider Breakthrough Action Team. In addition, s/he will support the Country Director in complying with USAID, JHU and Breakthrough Action processes and regulations.  

Special knowledge, skills, and abilities:

  • Demonstrates experience in strategic and creative thinking
  • Able to mentor and manage SBC technical staff

Any specific physical requirements for the job:  Potential for extensive travel throughout the country and limited international travel.

Supervisory responsibility:     TBD

Budget authority:   TBD

Minimum qualifications:      Master’s degree (M.A., MHS, MPH) required. Five years related experience required. Additional relevant experience and/or training may substitute for some education.

Preferred qualifications:

  • Has experience working in risk communication a plus
  • Has proven ability to effectively engage partners and manage multi-partner consortia, preferred
  • Has experience interacting with U.S. government agencies including Missions, preferred


Submission Instructions: