Nigeria Program Director
RMI is a non-profit organization committed to transforming global energy use to secure a clean, prosperous net-zero future for all. Our organization applies rigorous techno-economic research, whole-systems expertise, and entrepreneurial approaches to help markets take advantage of breakthrough energy innovations. We embed deeply in industries to identify market choke points, and—with influential partners—develop, test and refine innovative business models and solutions. Working together with business, philanthropists, communities, institutions, and entrepreneurs, we then seek to remove market barriers and scale the deployment of low-carbon energy.
RMI is seeking a Director to spearhead our growing portfolio of work to support clean and reliable energy access in Nigeria.
Program Overview: With an independent, objective, and fact-based approach, RMI’s Africa Energy Program works with a diverse set of public and private sector partners to solve sub-Saharan Africa’s toughest energy challenges. Fundamentally, we believe that people need and deserve access to clean, reliable, and affordable power, and that historical approaches to energy systems will not enable sustainable economic development for Africa economies in the 21st century and beyond. We are working to change that, leveraging RMI’s global platform and deeply collaborative partnerships across the range of industry stakeholders. Our team is growing, and we seek motivated and experienced professionals to join us in this mission.
Our program strategy and growing team of over 25 people focus on three complementary components: 1) expanding the use of holistic energy planning and clean energy portfolios, 2) enabling distributed energy resource (DER) adoption including mini- grids to expand access and save costs for stakeholders, and 3) demand-side interventions to drive efficient use of energy that enables local economic development. We act through a “think-do-scale” approach, including: (think) developing transformative business models and influential strategic thinker detailing market opportunities; (do) creating partnerships to develop innovative demonstration projects; and (scale) translating results to formalize utility, investor, and development programs.
Currently, the Africa Energy Program works alongside country partners in Nigeria, Ethiopia, and Malawi, with regional scaling activities that include partners across many countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Since its inception in 2015, the program has also supported partners in Rwanda, Uganda, and Sierra Leone.
RMI is seeking a strategic Director (a principal-level position within RMI staffing architecture) who can lead RMI’s growing portfolio in Nigeria. With your leadership experience, you will head large programmatic efforts for our body of work in Nigeria.
You will firmly establish our organization as an independent thought and execution leader by pushing energy transitions from traditional and often polluting and expensive energy infrastructure to clean, affordable, and resilient energy resources.
You will report to the Managing Director of the Global South Program and collaborate closely with other leadership to execute RMI’s programmatic strategies. As the ideal candidate, you will ultimately be based in Nigeria and may play a key role in establishing an office in Abuja, Nigeria. This will include creating a high-performance working environment where our staff can realize professional growth and success. You will also cultivate and lead teams focused on program execution by providing strategic and technical guidance and serve as a senior RMI representative to government, development partner, and private sector leadership. Finally, you will take an active role in pursuing funding, through philanthropic, government, and collaboration revenue.
RMI has a well-established reputation and extensive capabilities in designing and executing collaborative problem-solving and solution-scaling teams. We seek a creative, entrepreneurial yet deeply and broadly experienced energy professional to join our team and shape the fastest growing energy sectors in the world.
You will help to shape and fund our work on developing strategies for transitioning energy sector in Nigeria, meeting both longer-term objectives and annual progress commitments to donors and collaboration partners. At present, our organization’s budget is over $120 million. We expect significant growth across all our practices including our work in sub-Saharan Africa and Nigeria specifically.
Your Specific Roles and Responsibilities:
- Collaborate with the Managing Director / Program Principals to develop our organization’s expertise and reputation in energy systems in Nigeria;
- Navigate the execution of critical projects in Nigeria with the potential to support similar work in other African countries;
- Build RMI’s network and identify new projects, and shape and deliver collaborative efforts with the government, development partners, and the private sector in Nigeria;
- Serve as a subject matter expert and thought leader to develop innovative approaches for holistic energy system development, new business models for energy and energy service providers, and respectfully challenge current approaches;
- With the Africa leadership team, kengage in fundraising for work in Nigeria, including developing and maintaining specific donor relationships;
- Establish an RMI country presence in Nigeria and develop and maintain an inclusive country program culture;
- Collaborate with the Global South Leadership team and other professionals to set the overall direction of programmatic strategy, and ensure large-scale impact in Nigeria, Africa and beyond;
- Identify and shape specific program initiatives and projects, focusing on topics such as national-level energy planning, mini-grid cost reduction, energy efficiency, and targeted capacity building;
- Work with and mentor staff, including testing their ideas to maximize their impact;
- Demonstrate organization-wide leadership, helping set a culture of impact, accountability, and entrepreneurship; and
- Identify staffing and other resource needs and participate in the performance management process for junior staff.
- 10+ years of experience in energy, energy consulting or climate change;
- Direct experience in Nigeria’s energy sector; and
- Master’s degree required (in an applicable field such as engineering, economics, business, finance, law or physical and social sciences).
- Experience with the electricity industry, energy access, and/or productive use stakeholders and dynamics across a variety of geographies, market types, and resource characteristics;
- Conceptual and practical understanding of the intricate relationships between energy and economic/human development;
- Familiarity with country climate action and commitments, scenarios, or deep decarbonization pathways;
- Experience with leading or leveraging professional/peer/learning networks or other types of collaborative processes to achieve scaled impact or solutions;
- Experience in delivering technical assistance, consulting, coaching, mentoring, or developing leaders and practitioners;
- A track record or other demonstration of integrating a focus on diversity, equity, inclusion and justice in work, team culture, and outcomes;
- Successful engagement of multi-laterals or other complex national or sub-national partners in energy work;
- Experience with foundational utility, regulatory, and finance concepts, and demonstrated mastery in one of these;
- Familiarity or experience in relevant clean energy technology, minigrids, or energy system aspects; and
- Personal track record or public work on championing an equitable clean energy transition, globally.
This position will be located in Abuja, Nigeria. This will be discussed further throughout the interview process.
The salary range for this position is $145,500-$157,000. Compensation is dependent on experience and will be discussed/vetted throughout the interview process. This role has an additional 20% bonus target.
Increasing the diversity of thought, perspectives, ideas and opinions within RMI is a critical change element supporting our long-term sustainability and mission to build a clean, prosperous, and secure energy future. We strive for a level of diversity that reflects the communities we serve. Achieving this—regardless of ability, race, ethnicity, ancestry, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, socioeconomic class, educational attainment or other social identities—is critical to the success of each RMIer and collectively as an organization, ensuring that we:
- Have the different array of thinking that comes from diverse backgrounds and cultures, enabling us to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.
- Strive for a culture of inclusion and belonging by treating others with dignity, respect and appreciation enabling them to feel welcomed, supported and valued.
- Effectively connect, communicate and build long-lasting relationships with decision makers, stakeholders and constituents within diverse communities.
RMI is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
RMI is an independent nonprofit founded in 1982 that transforms global energy systems through market-driven solutions to align with a 1.5°C future and secure a clean, prosperous, zero-carbon future for all. We work in the world’s most critical geographies and engage businesses, policymakers, communities, and NGOs to identify and scale energy system interventions that will cut greenhouse gas emissions at least 50 percent by 2030. RMI has offices in Addis Ababa; Basalt and Boulder, Colorado; New Delhi; New York City; Oakland, California; Washington, D.C.; and Beijing.