We’re Hiring: Strategic Partnerships and Communications Manager

Position: Strategic Partnerships and Development Manager
Organization: The Organic Council of Ontario
Location: Anywhere in Ontario, remote work. Preference for Guelph or GTA, Ontario
Eligibility: 30 or younger Hours: 30-40 hours a week

Contract: 10-12 month contract with possible extension pending funding
Salary Range: $40,000 to $50,000 pro-rated
Benefits: OCO compensates staff for personal device use, internet and other small office expenses pending approval. After 6 months, staff may be offered a health savings plan.

Are you a strategic thinker with an interest in organizational structure and governance? 

Do you love a complex challenge involving mulitple stakeholders with diverse agendas?

Are you a nimble and thoughtful communicator with persuasive writing and business savvy? 

If so, then this job’s for you.

About the Job:

OCO seeks a highly motivated strategic thinker who can navigate deeply political relationships and find solutions. The Strategic Partnerships Development Manager will be tasked with supporting OCO’s Executive Director and board in creating long-term partnerships with agricultural commodity and general farm organizations to secure the long-term future of the organization. The work will involve identifying and engaging with key contacts in at least three organic value chains in order to create a clear and effective value proposition to be presented to potential partners. The work will involve data compilation and triangulation, questionnaire and survey development, and many interviews with organic operators and other agricultural stakeholders.

Further, this role will involve some grant writing and development work where appropriate.

The intern will be responsible for:

Grow Ontario Organic Partnerships Development

  • Support the coordination of the Grow Ontario Organic Partnerships committee and execute the workplan;
  • Work with board members to identify key contacts in at least three target value chains;
  • Conduct background research and knowledge gathering to understand the context of each value chain;
  • Develop questions, presentation templates and outreach materials;
  • Plan and execute interviews, focus groups and surveys where appropriate;
  • Prepare organic partnership presentation and coach organic stakeholders to deliver it, supporting them where appropriate;
  • Support the Executive Director and Board of Directors to engage with government and elected officials where appropriate;

Data Collection

  • Aggregate key information from various sources to present a persuasive argument to potential partners;
  • Work with partners where possible to triangulate data to fill in organic data gaps;
  • Develop MOUs and/or non-disclosure agreements where necessary and appropriate;
  • Use data to ascertain potential funding sources and agreements;

Outreach and Engagement

  • Work with key board members and organic partners to arrange interviews with organic and non-organic stakeholders;
  • Arrange meetings with association and government staff where appropriate;
  • Ensure all meetings and conversations are adequately documented and confidential information is managed appropriately;
  • Check in regularly with advisors, board members and the Executive Director to ensure messaging is sensitive and timely;

Fundraising and Strategic Development:

  • Develop a potential governance structure for the Grow Ontario Organic Partnership;
  • Support the Executive Director in developing, maintaining and expanding fundraising and business development efforts;
  • Support the Executive Director in identifying and applying to new grant opportunities and reporting on existing ones;

The ideal candidate will:

  • Be strategic, able to keep the end goals at the centre of their work while switching tact when necessary;
  • Be a strong negotiator, able to navigate potential competing interests with diplomacy and tact;
  • Be an excellent communicator, both written and verbal;
  • Possess strong partnership development skills and an interest;
  • Strong cold calling skills and the ability to be personable, professional and persuasive over the phone;
  • Have an understanding of the Ontario agri-food and business climate, specifically with respect to associations;
  • Be passionate about organic agriculture and local food businesses;
  • Experience with grant writing and reporting, fundraising and business development in a non-profit environment as asset;
  • Experience with strategic planning and/or governance development an asset;
  • Experience with policy development and government relations an asset;

About the Organic Council of Ontario:

The Organic Council of Ontario (OCO) is the Voice for Organics in Ontario. We are the only full value chain association operating at the provincial level. OCO represents over 1,300 certified organic operators, as well as the businesses, organizations, and individuals that bring food from farm to plate. OCO works to catalyze sector growth, support research, improve training, increase data collection, encourage market development, protect the integrity of organic claims, and inform the public of the benefits and requirements of organic agriculture.

OCO is committed to upholding the values of equity, diversity, and inclusion. OCO actively encourages applications from those who experience barriers to equity such as BIPOC and LGBTQ2S+ people. We invite you to inform us should you have any accessibility or accommodation needs.

To Apply: 
Please submit your resume and a cover letter in one PDF to hiring@organiccouncil.ca by June 17th at 5pm. Interviews will take place the week of June 24th to 28th.  The candidate will be hired by June 30th.  As part of the selection process, we will be asking candidates to complete a short assignment prior to their interview. 

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