Director, Project Origination and Development

Taking Root

Taking Root

Canada · Remote · Remote
Posted on Saturday, June 15, 2024
We are seeking a highly accountable, proactive, bi-lingual (Spanish & English), and resourceful Director, Project Origination and Development to build a reforestation project pipeline and vet, design, and launch new reforestation partnerships and projects, primarily in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Taking Root's purpose is to accelerate the restoration of the world’s forests. We enable smallholder farmers to grow trees and earn money from the carbon they remove from the atmosphere. Recognized for its best practices by the UN, EU and World Economic Forum, Taking Root is connecting thousands of farmers to the carbon market, improving their livelihoods by restoring forests around the world. Poised to invest in project origination and development to find and launch new smallholder reforestation carbon projects, our goal is to start five new reforestation projects over the next few years that have the potential to scale up to thousands of farmers reforesting tens of thousands of hectares of land and producing millions of carbon credits. This goal builds on Taking Root’s strong history of a successful over-a-decade-old flagship project in Nicaragua and an additional new project in development in the Dominican Republic.
This is a full-time position, and we are open to full-time remote work in the Americas. Our office is in Vancouver, BC, and is available for employees who prefer in-person settings. This role does require the flexibility to travel domestically and internationally as required, as this role will require about 25% travel to work with project partners in the field. Please note that the posted salary range provided is derived from compensation analysis conducted on the labour market within metropolitan Canada. The final offer amount for this role will be dependent on adjustment for geographical region, applicable experience, and skillset of the candidate.
We work with a diverse set of international partners and especially encourage Indigenous Peoples, members of racial minorities, people with disabilities, LGBTQIA2S+, and members of other underrepresented groups to apply.
What’s it like to work at Taking Root?
We’re a team of purpose-driven individuals, united in our goal to restore the world’s forests. Our workforce is a mixture of hybrid and fully remote, but we make space for connection and collaboration. Sharing pet photos is encouraged, regular organizational updates are the norm, and each fiscal year starts with an all-team in-person event (appropriately named ‘Roots’, because we love tree puns almost as much as we love trees). Employee health is a priority for Taking Root, and we continually strive to build a work environment that fosters growth, compassion, and transparency.
Our organizational values are:
  • We do it for nature.
  • Be in service of those stewarding the land.
  • Always pursue more impact.
  • Face the unknown with courage.
  • Help each other grow.
Read more about our values here.
Responsibilities:
Pipeline Development and Assessment
  • Lead the refinement of an existing pipeline development strategy, including which countries and partners to target and how to vet and qualify potential new projects.
  • Support the Executive Team (Treesuite) to find new projects and develop and nurture partnerships. Build and maintain relationships with key stakeholders, including project developers, investors, government agencies, and potential clients. Represent Taking Root in online meetings, conferences, events, and other networking opportunities to find expansion partners and other partnership relationships.
  • Lead the assessment of feasibility and viability of each pipeline project in the pipeline based on country, partner, and project factors, through: initial vetting, desk research, field visits, financial models, and a feasibility report.
  • Oversee the new projects pipeline and project development managers in the execution of the expansion strategy, country and partner prioritization, and go-to-market decisions to successfully determine which countries/regions to enter and which partnerships to start.
Project Design and Certification
  • Oversee new project design including, but not limited to: scale and focus of the project, additionality argument, eligibility criteria for farmers, planting design, farmer payment structures, etc.
  • Oversee, through work the Methodology & Standards team, the certification of the project including, but not limited to: the Project Idea Note and Project Design Document.
  • Lead the building of government relations toward securing the appropriate policy alignment required for project operations and funders/buyers.
Partner/Project Securement and Funding
  • Responsible for budgeting and financial models for all new projects
  • Secure partner partnerships, working directly with key partner leadership to form strong trusting relationships.
  • Contribute to Commercial and the Executive Team's project financing securement.
  • Shape partnership and project structures with Taking Root. Create and negotiate commercial terms with project partners.
  • Contribute to additional revenue needed for expansion efforts, such as grants or other partnerships.
Project Launch
  • Build initial partner capacity required to implement operations or pilots on operations (such as tree planting).
  • Oversee the handover of expansion projects to the operations team.
Team Management
  • Oversee and manage the team on all day-to-day work and tasks. Develop, coach, and manage a high-performing Expansion team that achieves or exceeds their goals.
  • Develop short and long-term organizational capability and resource plans. Hire new team members as required.
  • Create a vibrant, inclusive culture of continuous learning and collaboration that inspires people to do their best work.
Skills, Qualifications, and Experience required:
We especially encourage those with unconventional experience, education, or career paths to apply, even if you may not meet the precise requirements listed in this posting.
  • Expansion Experience: Proven experience in expansion and new project origination and development (5+ years), preferably in forestry, carbon, nature-based solutions, or energy. Has led expansion / new partner development, as VP, Director, or another senior role, for at least 3+ years.
  • Industry Experience: Proven experience and understanding of carbon markets, reforestation, agroforestry, ecosystem restoration, or related industries, focusing on project development and implementation. Strong understanding of nature-based solutions, voluntary carbon markets, and regulatory frameworks in international carbon mitigation. Existing networks in Nature-based Solution fields such as Forestry, Conservation or Agriculture.
  • Language skills: Ability to communicate at an effective professional level, both verbally and in writing, in both Spanish & English.
  • Cross-cultural skills and experience: Experience working and living across cultures and countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. Strong intercultural skills and inclusive approach to leadership and relationship management.
  • Team Management Experience: Excellent team management skills, growing and managing teams of 5 - 15+ individuals. At least 5 years of direct team management. Preference for candidates who have managed teams across geographies.
  • Pipeline building and due diligence skills: Experience in project and partner assessment and analysis of country contexts, partnerships, and finances.
  • Partnership and relationship-building skills: Exceptional relationship-building, communication and negotiation skills with the ability to engage and influence stakeholders at various levels. Experience with partnership structuring.
  • Strategic business planning skills: Strong analytical and strategic thinking abilities, with a keen eye for identifying business opportunities. Financial modelling and analytical abilities.
  • Independence and drive: Demonstrated ability to work independently, take initiative, and drive results in a fast-paced high-growth environment.
  • Flexibility and adaptability: Demonstrated adaptability and versatility.
  • Able to travel: Flexibility to travel domestically and internationally as required. This role will require about 25% travel, to a partner’s location at least a week a month and join leadership offsites in Canada.
How to apply
Submit a cover letter and resume via our portal. We value every application; however, only those applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.
Taking Root has a diverse team of talented people across gender and racial spectrums. We have created a culture of innovation, diversity, and inclusivity, striving for open discussions, best hiring and operational practices. We hire and promote based on merit, competence, performance, successful milestones, and business needs. We prohibit discrimination and harassment of any kind, be that based on race, colour, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, ancestry, disability, or any other protected characteristic as outlined by federal or provincial laws.