Guatemala: Director of Development

Organization: Semilla Nueva
Country: Guatemala
Closing date: 12 Jan 2017

Summary of the organization

Malnutrition affects over a billion people worldwide, and Guatemala has the third highest rate in the world with nearly half of children suffering stunted growth. Semilla Nueva works with scientists, farmers, and the Guatemalan government to promote biofortified crops. Biofortified corn, beans and others have been bred to have higher yields, better taste, and far more nutrients. These new crops allow farmers and families to continue growing and eating what they traditionally have, while dramatically improving the nutrition of their children, and the entire food system. Semilla Nueva’s goal is to reach more than a million people with these new crops in the next five years.

Semilla Nueva works directly with farmers to test and improve these new seeds. We achieve scaling through collaborations with farmer groups, NGOs, the government and through direct sales of commercial seeds based on innovative social marketing campaigns. We have also constructed a national collaboration to promote biofortified seeds, which has helped nearly 20 organizations in the majority of the country reach 5,000 families in its first year. Our newest seed, launched in 2016, has already changed the daily diets of 27,000 people, and we hope to reach 60,000 by 2017. Further, this year marked our first year of commercial seed sales, which we hope to provide over half of our revenue in the next five years, allowing Semilla Nueva to become more and more financially sustainable.

Our work has led to international recognition including some of the leading awards in social entrepreneurship, including an Ashoka fellowship and Forbes 30 under 30 for our founder, Curt Bowen.

Summary of the position

As our work and organization have grown, the opportunities for developing partnerships and funders have as well. We are hiring a Director of Development to lead the development of our messaging and donor relationships, in an effort to continue growing the organization and make possible our million diets in five years goal.

The Director of Development will be responsible for directly leading relationship maintenance and development, as well as managing a team of two full-time staff in the areas of communications, grant writing, grassroots engagement, and our fellowship program. The position will be based primarily in our main office in Guatemala City, Guatemala but will also include trips to our experimental farm and partner communities. International travel will also be required to present Semilla Nueva’s work and build relationships and donors in conferences such as SOCAP, Forbes 30 under 30, and others in the US, Europe and beyond. The position will work closely with and report directly to the Executive Director.



 Minimum of one year management experience
 Minimum of one year of grant writing or fundraising experience with a proven track record of success
 Excellent writing/communications skills, with an ability to communicate complicated ideas simply and concisely
 High attention to detail
 Demonstrated leadership, stress-management and flexibility in the work environment
 Demonstrated interest in rural development and food security, and a passion for social change


 Project management or event planning experience
 Agricultural experience/knowledge
 Experience in client service, client relationship management or sales
 Ability to drive stick shift/manual transmission vehicles

Language Requirements:
 Fluent/Native English
 Proficient Spanish

Specific Tasks
 Oversee the donor database and develop strategies to maintain and develop relationships with Semilla Nueva’s existing donors
 Manage the development team in the identification of grant opportunities, development of relationships with granting organizations, and writing of successful proposals.
 Working with the communications team, develop strategies to hone and promote Semilla Nueva’s message to a broad contingent of the public
 Through the communications and outreach team develop grassroots support and fundraising through presentations, engagement, donor trips and other related tactics
 Develop relationships with media outlets in order to expand this message
 Identify opportunities for speaking engagements and networking events; coordinate with the Executive Director to maximize relationship development and public image from these events.
 Coordinate with the Executive Director to manage day to day relationships with the US based Board of Directors

 Full-time position based in Guatemala City
 Minimum commitment of one year, preferably two
 Ability to work independently, proactively, and prioritize/coordinate a variety of activities
 Ability to creatively problem-solve in challenging work environments
 Comfortable traveling to and spending time in rural parts of Guatemala with difficult living conditions.
 Comfortable driving in Guatemala, with a valid driver’s license

Salary: Competitive local salary, dependent on experience

How to apply:

Before applying, please review our website, blog, and Annual Report which are found at

To apply please attach your cover letter and CV to

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