Finance Director – WaterAid America, Inc. – New York, NY

WaterAid is the #1 international non-governmental organization exclusively focused on clean water, hygiene and sanitation, and there are 750 million reasons we do what we do. That daunting figure is the number of men, women and children who still do not have clean water close to home.

Since our founding in 1981, we’ve empowered 26.4 million people with clean water. That’s 26.4 million more healthy and independent people in the world. It’s a great start but we have so much more work to do. With your help, we can end the water crisis.

WaterAid America is seeking an experienced Finance Director to lead the day-to-day accounting and business operations of the organization and ensure legal and regulatory compliance of WaterAid America’s financial functions.

The Director is expected to be a problem-solving leader with strong influencing, communication, and interpersonal skills and the flexibility to think and act across multiple levels of the organization simultaneously. As a trusted role responsible for safeguarding WaterAid’s assets, the Director is expected to demonstrate honest and ethical practices and a commitment to the WaterAid Global Code of Conduct.

The Director must be a motivated and energetic manager, able to work effectively with diverse cultures by adapting their personal style to get the best out of others. To be successful, the Director must balance an appetite to take on organizational-level challenges with a calm, pragmatic approach towards identifying and implementing appropriate solutions for a growing organization.

This is an exciting opportunity for someone eager to make a significant impact with a small, fast-paced team while also working on one of the world’s most urgent – and solvable – crises.


Reporting to the CFO, the Director is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day accounting and business operations of the organization, serving as the point of contact with external parties on insurance and other business matters, and ensuring legal and regulatory compliance of the financial functions. Specific responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Maintain the organizational chart of accounts and oversee accounting operations including, reconciliations, monthly, quarterly and year-end close processes, and the production of timely and accurate internal and external financial reports (including the consolidation of country programs).
  • Translate financial data into management information, work with the CFO to develop financial analyses, reports and forecasts to the WAA Leadership Team.
  • Strengthen and ensure adherence to internal controls, processes, and accountabilities; assess, recommend and implement updates to business policies and accounting practices; improve the finance team’s policy and procedure manual. Lead the implementation of internal control improvements and ensure their application is effective and continuous.
  • Advise management in financial decision-making and systems development and improvement; develop operational procedures for effective delivery of key finance activities.
  • With guidance from CFO, lead annual budgeting and planning process; work with and across the WAA Leadership Team to review financial plans and budgets; monitor progress and changes throughout the year; recommend reforecast to CFO, quarterly.
  • Lead the annual audit and tax preparation processes; liaise with staff and external auditors to coordinate timely delivery, accuracy and completeness of the annual audit, and/ or donor audits and associated tax filings (Federal 990, CHAR500).
  • Serve as primary organizational contact and manage relationships with external financial providers including: bank relationships, insurance, benefit providers and other key vendors, and state and federal registration and reporting; negotiate contracts and services on behalf of the organization.
  • Manage and recommend changes to organizational insurance policies (D&O, general property, cyber, etc.), assess needs and ensure adequacy of coverage.
  • Review project award and sub-award documents and budgets as needed.
  • Management and leadership
  • Identify gaps within internal controls, policies, procedures and practice; set team goals and manage 2-3 Finance staff to close these gaps; monitor and evaluate team activities quarterly.
  • Carry out the performance management cycle for 2-3 Finance staff: deliver regular, prompt, and high-quality feedback; serve as coach and mentor; assess capability gaps and offer opportunities for personal and professional growth.
  • Ensure a safe, secure, and legal work environment; model and champion WaterAid’s values; exercise discretion, sound judgement and maintain confidentiality; ensure the safeguarding of organizational assets.



  • CPA with degree(s) in finance, accounting, business or related field and/or a minimum of 8 years’ relevant experience.
  • Strong working knowledge of general ledger, banking, job cost accounting, accounts payable, accounts receivable, fixed assets, and non-profit taxes and registrations.
  • Thorough understanding of non-profit accounting and Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) and familiarity with Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS).
  • Exceptional analytical and communication skills; high degree of proficiency in MS Office (especially Excel)
  • Demonstrated progression in financial leadership roles with either a large nonprofit or NGO and/or at least 3 years’ experience managing the finances of a $10-20+ million nonprofit organization, preferably international with a mix of donor funding, corporation and foundations and private sources.
  • Superb attention to detail and project management skills; creative approach to problem-solving and the ability to manage multiple priorities simultaneously and to meet demanding deadlines in a complex and fast paced environment.
  • Proven ability to independently lead a high-performing team with a positive and flexible approach to collaborating across teams and functions; a professional manner; experience in training and/or supporting others to learn and ‘adopt new systems.
  • Commitment to WaterAid’s values and a working style that reflects these.
  • Must be authorized to work in the US

Desired skills & experience

  • MBA or other advanced degree or equivalent experience.
  • Experience within international development sector.
  • Knowledge of the Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements (2 CFR 200) and knowledge of the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), and USAID Acquisition Regulations (AIDAR) and and experience leading a Single Audit.
  • Familiarity with SunSystems and/or Adagio financial software.
  • Spanish language proficiency is helpful but not required.


WaterAid offers a generous vacation and benefits package available to its employees, including:

  • Health (medical) insurance (WAA offers several options, ranging from 90-100% employer-paid for you and your dependents), dental & vision insurance (100% employer-paid for you and your dependents), and pre-tax Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) for childcare, medical and commuter expenses
  • Participation in WaterAid’s 403(b) deferred contribution plan (with personal contributions matched after 1 year of service, up to 5% of gross annual salary).
  • Paid time off (PTO) including: 10 public holidays + a ‘floating’ holiday to be used at your discretion; 120 hours of PTO (with new and increased hours awarded annually), and 3 paid days for volunteering.


WaterAid celebrates, supports, and thrives on diversity and difference for the benefit of our employees, our mission, and the communities we serve. WaterAid is proud to be an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from suitably qualified and eligible candidates regardless of sex, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, religion or belief, marital status, or pregnancy and maternity.

WaterAid is committed to the safeguarding and wellbeing of all individuals, including the people in communities in which we work, staff, volunteers, contractors, and partners. Any form of abuse is not tolerated. Employment is contingent upon successful completion of a background check.


Please submit your CV and cover letter no later than April 23, 2021. Your cover letter should articulate your experience and demonstrated success with the essential requirements above, including your leadership and/or management experience.

Only candidates shortlisted for interviewing will be contacted within two weeks of the closing date for applications.

Applicants must have US work authorization.

Click Here To Apply

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