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Operations and Finance Director (Washington, DC)

Oceanic Society is the oldest U.S. non-profit organization dedicated to ocean conservation (est. 1969), with a mission to conserve marine wildlife and habitats by deepening the connections between people and nature. We work to improve ocean health worldwide by addressing the root cause of its decline—human behavior. Through travel programs, marine research, and investments in conservation, we are inspiring and empowering people at all levels of society to become better ocean stewards. Oceanic Society is guided by a dynamic and dedicated board with backgrounds in marketing, law, finance, tourism, philanthropy, business and communications, and operated by a small staff (<15) in the U.S. and Belize experienced in ecotourism, communications, marketing, nonprofit management, and biodiversity conservation. 

Oceanic Society is undergoing a transformational rebirth with a newly redefined mission, a new and growing board of directors, and new leadership. We are rebuilding from the ground up and, much like a startup, we are meeting the challenges and opportunities of transformation daily. We are seeking a flexible and skilled Operations and Finance Director to help lead the organization to the next level in its growth, and to build the systems to manage daily finances, generate budgets and financial projections, ensure smooth operations, and contribute to a positive and equitable workplace for staff. This is a challenging job that requires a flexible, proactive, experienced, solutions-oriented person who is passionate about nature, committed to Oceanic Society’s mission, and excited to be a part of our team.

Position Description
The Operations and Finance Director is responsible for administration and management of the internal operations of the organization. Areas of responsibility include Budget, Finance, Accounting and Bookkeeping; Human Resources; and Operations Management. The position reports to the CEO. The Operations and Finance Director will work closely with the CEO, senior leadership, the Board of Directors, and other staff members. This is a full-time exempt position. 

Key responsibilities of the Operational and Finance Director include, but are not limited to:

Financial Management 

  • Direct and manage the organization’s overall financial policies and accounting practices;
  • Advise the CEO and other senior staff on financial planning, budgeting cash flow, and policy matters.
  • Effectively communicate and present critical financial matters to the board of directors.
  • Develop, present, and analyze financial reports in an accurate and timely manner, both organization-wide and by program; 
  • Provide primary oversight of administrative details, including bookkeeping and processing/payment of all invoices and expense reports; 
  • Monitor incoming grants and contributions;
  • Work with leadership to prepare and present annual budget, conduct monthly budget reconciliation, annual audit, and financial reports; 
  • Oversee the month-end close of accounts and the preparation of journal entries and account adjustments;
  • Maintain all accounting files and the chart of accounts to ensure accuracy in the coding of invoices, check payments, and revenue receipts;
  • Manage financial transactions, organizational cash flow, financial planning, and forecasting;
  • Ensure legal and regulatory compliance and efficient financial procedures.

Human Resource Coordination

  • Serve as human resources director and implement personnel policies and procedures;
  • Maintain and control files for applicable correspondence, forms, policies/procedures, reports, and other work product files that allow for consistent and ongoing management of human resource functions;
  • Communicate and interpret compliance regulations and internal policy and procedures; ensure employees are in compliance with regulations, policies and procedures; proactively ensure that the organization is up to date on and in compliance with HR practices and laws;
  • Ensure effective work flow and operational consistency; oversee staff and program work plan and budget development; 
  • Oversee payroll and benefits (and ensure compliance with laws like the Affordable Care Act); 
  • Approve personnel documents and oversee personnel records;
  • Assist employees with human resources issues and inquiries and with conflict resolution;
  • Conduct employee, volunteer and intern orientations

Office Management & Administration

  • Create and document systems that allow for consistent and ongoing management of office operations including but not limited to: record maintenance, office facilities, equipment, procurement and management of services and supplies, regulatory filings, insurance, office calendars; 
  • Assess office needs, recommend and implement new methods, procedures or strategies to solve work problems and improve coordination and productivity;
  • Oversee purchasing of all office equipment and supplies and ensure price, quality and delivery standards are met;
  • Coordinate management of and communications between Oceanic Society offices and field station;
  • Monitor 501(c)(3) compliance, including annual tax filing.

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required.


  • Minimum of a B.A. or B.S.


  • Proof of strong operational experience a must, and ideally has worked 3-4 years in a management role in a socially-responsible, international, and multi-site non-profit organization
  • Financial management experience
  • Human resources experience


  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Computer and Internet savvy with high proficiency in Microsoft Excel and QuickBooks (online) financial software; Familiarity with Google Apps and Skype a plus.


  • Experienced leader with excellent people skills, able to coordinate and motivate a dedicated but often overextended and geographically-distant team
  • Ability to work effectively with little or no instructions. Ability to solve problems and deal with a variety of undefined variables in situations where only limited standardization exists.
  • Sensitive to a strong organizational culture, a positive force in encouraging entrepreneurial thinking and creating dynamic work environments
  • Must be self-starting and an independent worker
  • Flexible and able to multi-task, can work within an ambiguous fast-moving environment, while also being a force that drives toward clarity and solutions
  • Proven ability to lead staff to accomplish program goals 

Salary and Benefits

  • Salary commensurate with experience 
  • Medical / Dental Insurance: not provided, but reimbursement of up to $500/month for personal health insurance possible.  
  • Personal Time Off: Oceanic Society is committed to providing earnings protection for vacation, illness, medical and dental appointments, personal business, personal holidays, funerals or other leave of absences. 
  • Performance and salary reviews are done for all employees on an annual basis

How to Apply
Please send a cover letter, resume, and salary requirements to with the subject line "Operations and Finance Director"

This position is based in Washington, DC.

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