Ocean Career: Sustainable Fisheries Aquaculture Program Director

Founded in 2006, Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) is a marine conservation organization working toward a world where the oceans are healthy, all seafood is produced sustainably, and everyone has access to sustainable seafood. SFP has over 60 employees based in 10 countries, and an annual revenue in excess of $9 million.

We leverage the power of seafood buyers and retailers in every part of the seafood supply chain to rebuild depleted fish stocks, reduce the environmental impacts of fishing and fish farming, address social issues in fishing, and advance economic opportunities for fishers and their communities. Our Supply Chain Roundtables (SRs) allow seafood suppliers to work together in a pre-competitive environment to promote and support improvements in fishery and aquaculture practices, management, and policy.

About the Job

The Aquaculture Program Director provides leadership, management, coordination, and strategic insight to SFP’s aquaculture strategy and the implementation thereof. The Aquaculture Program Director serves as the primary point of contact and information resource for the organization on aquaculture-related matters. This role works strategically to support retailers, food service companies, and suppliers through partnership and supply chain roundtables (SRs) to advance sustainable sourcing policies, adoption of best practices, and to demonstrate how improvements in aquaculture management and practices can help address some of the critical environmental concerns of our time (e.g., biodiversity and habitat loss/protection, and climate change).

Key Responsibilities/Activities

Catalyzing Improvements in Aquaculture (50%)

  • Support the Markets Team and push retailers, food service companies, and suppliers to advance sustainable aquaculture sourcing policies and best practice
  • Provide expert input and direction to enable improvements to aquaculture management practices and policy in key sectors (shrimp, salmon) and geographies (major producing regions of key sectors)
  • Work closely with the Advisory Services unit to ensure actionable aquaculture information is available to industry
  • Work with Communications to develop an updated organizational profile for SFP on aquaculture issues with external audiences
  • Lead collaborations focused on aquaculture (e.g., Certification and Ratings Collaboration, Aquaculture Stewardship Council) on behalf of SFP to increase impact and reach
  • Participate in relevant advisory groups (e.g., IDH, Science-based Target Network) to facilitate SFP’s aquaculture work, strategy, and fundraising
  • Maintain sufficient understanding of government aquaculture policy and management in key producer countries to inform market intervention opportunities
  • Maintain relationships with local and international organizations working in the field to ensure sustained improvements catalyzed by SFP and/or led by industry.

Supply Chain Roundtables: Aquaculture (30%)

  • Engage industry (i.e., major buyers, importers, suppliers) in Supply Chain Roundtables including sector supply chain mapping to identify priority companies, outreach, engagement, and education of priority companies, leveraging SFP partners and major buyers, and liaising with other NGOs to engage their partners supply chains.
  • Provide leadership to assigned SR(s):
    • Build and maintain relationships with industry participants, and strategically recruit new participants.
    • Contribute to the development and implementation of a global strategy for making production under the SR’s scope more sustainable.
    • Support the aspects of operating roundtables including communications, reporting and evaluation.
    • Generate income from SR participant companies, such that funding can be used to cover up to date FishSource profiles for T75 covered by the SR.
  • Drive improvements to move toward and achieve Target 75 and other strategic goals
  • Maintain routine communication and gather intel from field teams (SFP team and external), science/analysis teams, supply chain, and retailers/market (SFP partners and external).
  • Guide the SR to send requests for specific improvements, depending on the intel gathered, to the exporters/processors, producers, AIPs, governments, and/or others.
  • Working with the Markets Team, line up retailer/market leverage as needed to push SRs to make requests and to support SRs when they make requests
  • Use existing/available internal resources (e.g., matrix teams) to assist in driving improvements

Management and Administration (20%)

  • Lead organizational strategy on aquaculture in conjunction with the Senior Implementation Team and Aquaculture Matrix Team.
  • Participate in senior management team calls and other cross-divisional working groups as needed to integrate aquaculture across the organization and share lessons learned.
  • Supervise and provide leadership for direct-reporting position(s): Aquaculture Information Manager
  • Manage project-based contractors to ensure success of program deliverables.
  • Work closely with the Development Team to grow the aquaculture program through fundraising including collaborating on new grant proposals and donor reporting.
  • Manage and report on budgets for aquaculture work where allocated.
  • Facilitate development of an updated SFP aquaculture strategy for 2025–2030.

Minimum Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree in aquaculture management and sustainability, marine conservation, market-based conservation, or equivalent
  • Demonstrable knowledge and understanding of the seafood industry, based on at least 10 years’ experience working in or with the private sector
  • Minimum 5 years’ experience in program management and cross-divisional team management
  • A high level of strategic awareness and an understanding of how to guide a multi-stakeholder body toward consensus and collective action
  • Strong organizational and project management skills, including the ability to coordinate concurrent projects and coordinate work with external collaborators
  • Excellent communication skills in English (speaking, reading, and writing), including ability to present complex issues effective to industry audiences and to be persuasive and credible
  • Strong interpersonal skills, including the ability to build relationships of trust and influence with industry audiences
  • Personal qualities of honesty and integrity, and a commitment to conservation
  • Ability to work within a framework of responsibilities, objectives, and deadlines without (or with limited) in-person supervision
  • Ability to work comfortably and effectively in a mostly or fully online environment: work-from-home arrangements, strong practical knowledge of productivity software and/or platforms (i.e., Word, Excel, email & other common business communication tools), ability to learn new technology with ease, etc.
  • Cultural awareness to work and communicate effectively with diverse colleagues and stakeholders
  • Scheduling flexibility to facilitate interactions with globally dispersed colleagues

Desirable Qualities

  • Master’s degree in relevant field of study
  • Understanding of aquaculture as production industry, not just a science
  • Knowledge of fisheries and fisheries management systems as a comparator to aquaculture
  • Familiarity with life cycle analysis, carbon reporting platforms, and blue carbon concepts
  • Experience working with and managing programs funded by international institutions (e.g., FAO, UNDP, GEF, World Bank)

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