Position Description

Project Director, SMART4TB
Location Open
Department Other Programs R&D
# of openings 1
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Vital Strategies is anticipating a five-year USAID-funded global activity – Supporting, Mobilizing, and Accelerating Research for TB Elimination (SMART4TB) – that will stimulate the development and implementation of new tools and approaches to accelerate the prevention, detection and management of tuberculosis in adults and children and strengthen local capacity to design, implement, disseminate and use findings from TB research. 

In anticipation of this activity, Vital Strategies is seeking a Project Director (PD) who will be responsible for the successful management and implementation of this critically important multi-million dollar, multi-year award. The PD will provide overall strategic vision, technical leadership, administration, fiscal management, and grant and contract administration and management, assuring quality program delivery, impact and cost effectiveness of the project.  

Project Director may be based in New York or one of Vital Strategies’ country offices depending on project requirements. 


Duties and Responsibilities:

Technical/Research Responsibilities -

  • Provide strategic leadership and vision in the development and implementation of new tools and approaches to accelerate the prevention, detection, and management of tuberculosis in adults and children.  
  • Oversee technical assistance to strengthen local capacity to design, implement, disseminate and use findings from TB research. 
  • Ensure technical capacity of staff and provide technical assistance and backstopping when required. 
  • Ensure documentation and dissemination of findings, impact, innovations, and lessons learned. 
  • Be a thought leader in SMART4TB, representing the activity at conferences, meetings and in other forums to achieve dissemination goals, maintain networks and awareness of gaps and new developments in the sector. Publish findings in peer-reviewed, scientific outlets. 

Management Responsibilities -

  • Lead the strategic direction, guiding overall research prioritization and execution, for the award to meet program goals and targets. 
  • Provide administrative, programmatic, and managerial oversight to all aspects of the project, to ensure that all interventions are technically sound and appropriate and executed to meet the donor’s performance standards. 
  • Ensure mechanisms are in place to monitor the implementation of activities, including progress toward achieving stated objectives and benchmarks with high-quality and on-time performance. 
  • Recruit and supervise staff, short-term technical assistance, consortium partners and/or sub-partners to meet evolving technical and complex project demands; provide mentoring and skills building to local staff and key local counterparts. 
  • Establish and maintain highly collaborative working relationships with the project’s donor, government counterparts, and all other stakeholders, including technical partners, NGO’s, academic institutions and other donors and cooperating partners. 
  • Ensure timely, high-quality, and complete submission of work plans, quarterly and annual reports, M&E reports, financial reports, and any other reports required by the donor. 
  • Ensure that all activities are undertaken in full compliance with Vital Strategies’ standard operating procedures, donor policies and regulations, and national policies and laws. 
  • Promote sustainability of project activities with effective networking, linkages to other programs, capacity building of project staff, and institutional strengthening of staff. 
  • Manage project budget within approved spending levels and ensure accurate and timely financial reports to donor and internal stakeholders. 



Education and Degree -

  • A minimum of a master’s degree in public health or a related field required.  
  • A MD/PHD strongly preferred. 

Skills and Abilities -

  • Proven ability to manage large, complex USAID-funded projects. Knowledge of and familiarity with USAID program management, policies, regulations and procedures. 
  • Demonstrated experience working in partnership with host governments, international donors, the business community, academia, and implementing partners. 
  • Experience as a project director, chief of party, or senior expert advisor required. Proven ability to manage and supervise diverse technical assistance teams. 
  • Demonstrated experience in quantitative and qualitative methods, experimental design, and data collection and statical analysis. 
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate program findings effectively in a variety of forums and to diverse audience including through peer-reviewed publications 
  • Proven ability to lead all aspects of grant and administration, and technical assistance staff with a commitment to teamwork 
  • Strong oral and written communication skills, including evidence of quality report writing and presentations. 
  • Demonstrated ability to meet deadlines with quality products. 
  • Strong organizational and interpersonal skills. 



Required -

  • At least 15 years of professional experience managing operational, project management, and administrative duties for large USG-funded health projects or other complex donor-funded projects with similar depth and complexity. 
  • At least 15 years of technical expertise in TB service delivery, research implementation science, operational or clinical research, drug-resistant TB and MDR-TB program management, local organization engagement, and capacity building for TB programming. 
  • At least 8 years of supervisory experience with diverse teams of long- and short-term experts. 


Additional Information:

  • Ability to travel at least 30% of the time both internationally and domestically (pending appropriate levels of safety and security). 
  • Fluency in spoken and written English. Additional language skills (particularly in French or other languages spoken in USAID TB priority countries) would be an added asset 
  • Proficiency with MS Office Suite, with excellent MS Word and Excel skills 
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