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Board Member at TradeMark East Africa February, 2020 Job Description
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TradeMark East Africa (TMEA) is an aid-for-trade organisation that was established with the aim of growing prosperity in East Africa through increased trade. TMEA operates on a not-for-profit basis and is funded by the development agencies of the following countries: Belgium, Canada,Denmark, European Union, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, United Kingdom, and United States of America.

TMEA works closely with East African Community (EAC) institutions,national governments, the private sector and civil society organisations. TMEA, with an annual expenditure of around US$100 million, is now the leading aid-for-trade facility in the world. TMEA has its headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya with vibrant and successful operations in EAC (Arusha), Burundi (Bujumbura),Democratic Republic of Congo (Bukavu),Ethiopia and the Horn (Addis Ababa & Hargeisa), Rwanda (Kigali), South Sudan (Juba), Tanzania (Dar es salaam) and Uganda (Kampala). The first phase of TMEA delivered exceptional results which directly contributed to substantial gains in East Africa’s trade and regional integration environment in terms of reduced transit times, improved border efficiency, and reduced barriers to trade.

TMEA is now in the second phase of its strategy and aims to deliver even more large-scale impact to maximise the potential benefits of aid-for-trade interventions which lead to sustainable and inclusive prosperity through job creation, poverty reduction and enhanced economic welfare. To find out more, please visit their website.

The Role

TMEA is seeking to recruit a dynamic and visionary individual with previous Board and strategic leadership experience, professional networks and regional influence to join TMEA’s Board as a Non-Executive Director. Members of the Board will oversee the strategy, policy, and direction of TMEA, and so assist with the achievement of the organisation’s mission and objectives. This will include active participation in the Board and its committees, performing non-executive duties, and exercising the powers and functions which the Board may assign to the Board Member.

Board meetings are held quarterly, and committee meetings will be held in conjunction with full Board meetings as required. TMEA aims to have a diverse board and is therefore seeking an individual with expertise in audit,finance and/or risk. This appointment will be for three years from 1 June 2020 until 30 May 2023. Appointments are renewable once for a further 3 years, subject to satisfactorily completing annual performance reviews.


Specific roles and responsibilities include:

  • Understand and demonstrate a commitment to TMEA’s vision, mission, objectives, and operations, and keep up to date with issues and trends that may affect the organisation.
  • Through regular engagement with TMEA’s donors, understand the context in which TMEA and its donors operate, in particular, appreciate the strategic role of the TMEA Council and the public interest in the effective use of development assistance.
  • Undertake representational duties as necessary including participating in key strategic events and engaging with senior donor officials and key regional stakeholders.
  • Actively participate in Board and designated Board committee meetings including preparing for these meetings by studying documents, agreements and other papers provided.
  • Review TMEA Strategy, TMEA Business Plan and policies and ensure that TMEA operates in a manner that is consistent with the TMEA Constitution, and applicable legal and regulatory requirements.
  • Ensure the effective management of TMEA’s risk profile.
  • Accept fiduciary and other responsibilities as required by companies’ legislation.
  • Understand and monitor the organisation’s financial affairs, including adoption and oversight of annual budgets.
  • Work with TMEA’s CEO and management to identify new investment opportunities in support of TMEA’s strategy.
  • Establish and maintain an effective, independent and respected presence and a collegial relationship with other Board Members.
  • Maintain objectivity and independence, be aware of and avoid any potential conflict of interest and maintain confidentiality of information.
  • Support the Chair of the Board in fulfilling his/her responsibilities, including closely collaborating with the TMEA Council, the various National Oversight Committees (NOCs) and the Programme Coordinating Committee of EAC (PCC).
  • Monitor the performance of the TMEA management team, their execution of strategy,policies and plans and management of resources. Direct line management responsibilities will be as follows:
    • In the case of the Chair of the Board of Directors, overall management of the Chief Executive Officer.
    • In the case of the Chair of the Audit, Finance & Risk Committee, line management of the Director of Audit & Assurance.
    • In the case of the Chair of the Human Resources & Remuneration Committee, acting as the Countersigning Quality Assuror for the performance management of members of the TMEA Senior Leadership Team.

Qualifications, skills and experience

Academic and professional qualifications

  • Academic and/or professional qualification in finance, audit, and accountancy is required and qualifications in any of the following areas would be an added advantage:
    • Trade and regional integration
    • Transport and infrastructure development
    • Private sector development
    • Human resource management

Work experience

  • A minimum of 10 years’ management experience including five at a Senior Director level
  • 10 years’ experience in a senior finance and/or audit role (preferably in Eastern Africa)
  • Either a senior role in a reputable firm of accountants and auditors or experience as finance director of a reputable company
  • High-level experience of preparing and/or auditing published financial statements under companies’ legislation in one of the EAC Partner States
  • Significant work experience with Regional Economic Communities and Donor Governments in an international multicultural environment.
  • Professional experience and geographic expertise acquired in one or more of the countries in which TMEA operates.

Additional skills

  • Ability to establish and maintain strong collaborative partnerships/relationships with development partners, high ranking government officials, civil society and private sector organisations.
  • Adept at working with diverse teams, delivering change and demonstrating value for money.
  • Ability to influence others to achieve objectives and gain consensus and collaboration.
  • Sound decision-making and judgment capabilities.
  • Strong problem solving and analytical skills.
  • Excellent presentation, communication and personal effectiveness skills.
  • Good understanding of the role of internal audit and the importance of internal controls
  • Proven intellectual and strategic thinking skills.
  • Strong strategy formulation and implementation skills including the ability to communicate strategy and results concisely and simply.
  • Excellent leadership and management skills.
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