First listed on: 08 September 2022

  • Halt & reverse the loss of nature & ecosystems essential to life and culture
  • Advocate for change & drive community action
  • Highly visible Melbourne-based role working with sector experts nationally

The Organisation

The newly founded Biodiversity Council (The Council) will be the peak independent scientific voice for Australian biodiversity and is founded by leading experts including First Peoples philanthropists, and universities. The Council will be hosted by the University of Melbourne through a start-up phase, after which it will become a financially and legally independent entity. 

The vision of The Council is that Australia’s biodiversity is recognised and valued nationally and globally as a priceless heritage, a foundation for our life, and a defining feature of our country, and that its future is recovered or secured. The Council will be a trusted expert voice communicating accurate information on all aspects of biodiversity to secure and restore the future of Australia’s biodiversity. 

The Council will build networks of experts, including First Peoples, and community champions to drive an increase in political and community awareness, support and action for biodiversity and Country.

Benefits and Culture

Melbourne-based with flexible work arrangements, salary packaging options, and University of Melbourne benefits.

The Role

Reporting to the Advisory Board and the Dean of Science, you will be pivotal in leading and working closely with the Council of experts to oversee delivery of strategic priorities to reverse biodiversity loss.

The Executive Director will establish and oversee the smooth running of the organisation including all governance, legal and financial processes, and risk management, with support from the University of Melbourne’s structures and systems.   

You will lead, motivate and expand an initial team of six high calibre staff to implement and amplify the objectives of The Council and the work of Australia’s biodiversity experts, establishing the organisation’s credibility.

As a change agent, you will contribute to, and oversee public campaigning of the Council, prosecuting the case for biodiversity in the media, with policy makers and politicians, with civil society, and in the wider community. Additional responsibilities will be to:

  • Establish The Council as financially sustainable and independent within the start-up phase
  • Establish and build diversified fundraising streams, securing new donor bases
  • Develop partnerships and strong relationships with key stakeholders and funders
  • Oversee the development and implementation of targeted advocacy campaigns
  • Create an engaged, motivated team with a culture of high performance
  • Model, communicate, and promote the Council’s Code of Conduct and values 

Skills Required

The Executive Director will have a strong desire to protect Australian biodiversity. Your diverse experience encompasses representing organisations as a thought leader, developing, and managing influential advocacy strategies, and oversight of impactful campaigns. You can additionally offer the following:

  • Good understanding of philanthropy and experience developing foundation partners
  • Success in conveying key messages in the popular media, public, and with policy makers
  • Strong knowledge of governance and compliance and proven experience supporting boards
  • Excellent political nous, entrepreneurial flair, negotiation, and leadership skills.
  • Expertise in stakeholder engagement across government, business, academic and community
  • Experience supporting First Peoples leadership and designing advocacy campaigns is desirable
  • Capacity to rapidly master biodiversity knowledge and its implications for policy, business, First Peoples and community

If you would like to leverage your organisational leadership experience to protect Australian biodiversity, and you meet the skills and experience above, please apply by submitting your cover letter responding to the skills required above and resume. Alternatively, contact Lois Freeke in Melbourne on 03 8080 8978.

Please note there is no formal closing date for this role, if you are interested, we would encourage you to apply as soon as possible. 

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