FW: Peace Corp Country Director - please forward
- The Peace Corps is filling Country Director positions in over a dozen
countries. If you know anyone who might fit the criteria below, please
forward this to them. Peace Corps experience not necessary. French,
Spanish, Chinese, Russian, and various other languages needed for some of
the openings, although some need English only. Contact information at the
From: Howard Raik [mailto:hraik@...]
Sent: Tuesday, October 02, 2001 3:32 PM
To: Elizabeth Versten
Subject: Peace Corps country director search
SELECTION CRITERIA FOR PEACE CORPS COUNTRY DIRECTOR CANDIDATES
The responsibilities of a Country Director (CD) are wide-ranging. The Peace
Corps Country Director is responsible for management and direction of all
aspects of the Peace Corps program in his or her assigned country. The
Country Director is:
* responsible for supporting approximately 50 to 200 Volunteers as they live
and work in a developing country, often under conditions of hardship, and
lend their skills and energy to meet its development needs and promote a
better understanding between the host country people and Americans;
* the senior manager of a staff of approximately 10 to 40 employees and the
senior administrator of an annual budget ranging from $500,000 to
* the senior Peace Corps representative in the country of assignment;
* responsible for analysis and implementation of all Peace Corps programming
and projects; and
* the personification of Peace Corps' commitment to improving world
understanding and peace through people-to-people contact.
Therefore, CD candidates must demonstrate a broad range of leadership
qualities, management expertise, interpersonal skills and cross-cultural
The selection criteria listed below will be used in evaluating applicants'
suitability for the Country Director position.
1. Leadership qualities
The Country Directors are responsible for leading the Peace Corps program in
their assigned countries. Each Country Director should have and share a
philosophy and a vision for the country program and a plan for achieving the
vision. That vision must be based on the expressed host country needs.
Therefore, what are needed are candidates who possess strong leadership
attributes making them able to establish direction and set the tone for post
2. Volunteer support (program development, training, logistical support,
health care, safety and security)
The Volunteer is the Peace Corps' most important resource. It is important
that Volunteers have meaningful work, that they have received the training
necessary to be effective, that the Peace Corps is ensuring that their
safety and health care needs are being met; and that their allowances and
housing meet their basic needs. Therefore it is the ultimate responsibility
of the Country Director to ensure the Volunteers have quality educational
and/or development projects, access to health care, safety and security,
logistical support and informal counseling. The Peace Corps grants Country
Directors significant decision-making authority. They act with minimal
consultation from headquarters in providing the necessary support to the
Volunteers. They, then, must routinely exercise independent judgment in
providing and conducting oversight over these matters within country.
Prior experience working with volunteers and/or young adults may indicate
that the candidate has the necessary skills and capability to carry out this
important set of responsibilities.
3. Management expertise (Including financial, human resources, and security
The Peace Corps has adopted organizational systems designed to ensure
agency-wide effectiveness in planning, budgeting, programming and Volunteer
training. The CD bears ultimate responsibility for managing these systems.
At the same time, the Peace Corps grants Country Directors significant
decision-making authority; they must routinely exercise independent judgment
and act with minimal consultation from headquarters.
Ideally, CD candidates should have a background of demonstrated excellence
in managing increasingly complex organizations or organizational units.
Specifically, the candidates should have had experience and/or demonstrate a
capability to be able to perform the following tasks:
* Program management - For example, the Country Director has project
approval authority; makes technical analyses and evaluations of the
implementation of Peace Corps projects, prepares the country strategic and
management plan in conjunction with others. Also, the Country Director
assures the preparation and timely submission of country plans or reports
and programmatic recommendations for regional headquarters.
* Financial management - The Country Director administers and oversees
conduct of all Peace Corps financial activities at post, the Peace Corps
financial activities, including developing the necessary financial controls.
In addition the CD prepares and submits budget data as requested, reviews
fiscal expenditures and imprest fund activities.
* Human resources management - Country Directors direct and supervise the a
multicultural Peace Corps staff in-country. This means that the Country
Director should insure that all personnel have an understanding of their
responsibilities, that they are trained to support Peace Corps Volunteers
and accomplish program goals, and that there is an effective performance
appraisal system serving as an effective tool for problem solving and work
improvement. as well as for recognizing superior performance
* Management of health, safety and security matters - Among the important
responsibilities of the Country Director are that of ensuring the personal
safety and security of Volunteers and supervising the management of the
medical unit which supports them. This requires: developing, testing, and
enforcing policies and procedures, ensuring the delivery of training to
Volunteers and staff; coordination with U. S. embassy and host government as
appropriate; anticipation, prevention and management of crises to include
natural disasters, civil unrest and emergency evacuations.
4. Development experience
The fundamental mission of the Peace Corps is to send Volunteers to assist
in the on-going grassroots development efforts of its host countries and to
promote better understanding between Americans and the peoples of those
countries. CDs play a key role in fulfilling this mission. They must ensure
that local efforts are conducted in a manner consistent with agency goals
and policies, and are responsive to the needs of host country people.
The Peace Corps recognizes that, while these skills and abilities may be
gained in different settings, specific experience in international,
grass-roots development programming is usually the most relevant to agency
5. Cross-cultural sensitivity and international perspective
Country Directors must work comfortably in international, cross-cultural
environments. Candidates need to demonstrate a keen sensitivity to and
respect for other cultures, traditions and values.
Experience with other ethnic, racial, or religious groups may reflect
valuable cross-cultural expertise. In addition, previous overseas
experience, particularly in a developing country, is highly desirable.
6. Communication skills
Country Directors must be able to interact effectively with others, inside
and outside the office. The Peace Corps expects both verbal and written
communications to be clear, accurate and articulate.
Language requirements. In some countries, official business is conducted in
a language other than English, and the CD must be fluent in the official or
local language to be effective. For these assignments, language proficiency
(usually in French or Spanish) is a pre-requisite for consideration.
Interviews for positions with such requirements will include assessment of
7. Country representational capability
The CD is the highest-ranking Peace Corps official in the country of
assignment and a member of the American Embassy Country Team. As such, he or
she interacts with officials of the host government, the Ambassador and
diplomatic community, staff from other development organizations, and local
community leaders and officials.
The CD must present, explain, promote, defend and negotiate the Peace Corps
positions, while maintaining good relationships with others within and
outside the agency.
Howard A. Raik, President
CHP International, Inc.
1040 North Boulevard, Suite 220
Oak Park, IL 60302
Phone: (708) 848-9650
Fax: (708) 848-3191