We are a global human rights organization, a collective of passionate human rights activists with (mostly remote) team members all over the world. WITNESS’ mission is to help people use video and technology to protect and defend human rights. We are a 45+person multi-disciplinary team with staff based across 5 continents. While we’re legally a non-profit that is registered as a 501(c)3 in the U.S, we are a global collective: our staff members (as well as consultants, interns, fellows and a vast community of partners and collaborators) are based around the world and reflect a group of activists with diverse skills and backgrounds.
WHAT WE DO
WITNESS pairs grassroots community support with advocacy at a systems level. Our team works holistically on a global scale to understand how communities are using and want to use video and technology for human rights. With a cellphone camera, anyone can become a human rights defender and expose injustice, making it harder for perpetrators to hide or for systems of oppression to remain invisible. But using video for community organizing, justice and accountability can be dangerous – videos can put defenders (or those they film) at risk, can be used against communities in court or deceitfully discredited by tired old power narratives. Filming is almost never enough – for videos to make a difference they need to work alongside strong advocacy or legal strategies; they also need to be created, preserved and shared in ways that avoid creating more harm or trauma.
New threats to human rights are emerging at the intersection of artificial intelligence, misinformation and disinformation and a global wave of rising authoritarianism.
When it comes to systemic challenges we are on the watch for both existing problems – like how large amounts of critical human rights footage are lost because of the arbitrary decisions of platforms – but also emerging threats and opportunities, such as those posed by ‘deepfakes’, new ways to manipulate media to make it look like someone said or did something they never did.
WITNESS 2021 Year in Review
ABOUT THE TEAM
Committed to the organization’s mission and vision, you will be part of a dynamic, global team of activists who work across the world and in different time zones. You’ll be closely partnered with and supportive of the Executive Director and the Deputy Executive Director in this role, you will function as a key connector in this global team, ensuring that the organization runs smoothly and efficiently in all respects, and information flows smoothly between staff and consultants, as well as with our external allies and supporters. You will frequently interact with and partner with WITNESS Board members, donors and supporters, and consultants.
Your role, particularly, will help be the ‘glue’ to ensure the organization runs smoothly, anticipate any roadblocks, and partner effectively internally and externally to achieve its mission and vision. Your role is pivotal in helping to realize and support WITNESS’s vision of a globally-distributed, diverse and empowered team focused on advancing human rights through video and technology. This position reports to the Executive Director, and works closely with the Deputy Executive Director and the Board.
WITNESS organizationally prides itself on placing great emphasis on high levels of collaboration, professionalism and effectiveness. As the Executive Associate, you will provide comprehensive support for the Executive function through preparing, organizing, and driving meetings and organizational priorities. Your support ensures the seamless, fast-paced execution of the Executive Director (“ED”) and Deputy Executive Director’s (“DED”) priorities and daily schedule with a high degree of professionalism, attention to detail, follow through, speed, and attentiveness to issues requiring the organization’s attention. You will maintain key Executive relationships, including external stakeholders and supporters. In particularly you will function as the primary liaison directly for the WITNESS Board, including engaging directly with Board members, supporting and organizing Committee and Board retreats and meetings, working closely with the Board to dynamically maintain and update all manuals, policies, and records, supporting its DEI tracking, and conducting research on new Board members in collaboration with the Board’s Governance Committee.
You will ensure that internal systems are cultivated and maintained to enable the highest possible functioning of the Executive function. You will provide support on day-to-day administration, such as preparing agendas, scheduling and managing schedules, as well as supporting various organizational projects. You will provide research and preparatory support on upcoming meetings to ensure the ED and DED are well-prepared for their schedule.
This role is perfect for a self-starter who is highly organized, likes to project manage and is good at it, pays focused attention to detail, and is an excellent writer and communicator, shows sound initiative and anticipation qualities, excels in fast-paced team-based environments, and enjoys interacting with staff and partners at all levels.
You are the kind of person who gets a kick out of supporting the organization’s efficiency and smooth functioning through overall systems initiatives, you see your role not only as it relates to the Executive function, or the Deputy Executive Director , but also cross-organizationally, and enjoy improving upon those, and ensuring that there is transparent, compelling and open communication that enhances inclusivity and builds team culture.
The ideal candidate will need to be a masterful problem-solver and organizational expert given the complex calendar management and planning involved. You are an exceptional, inclusive communicator and have the ability to act as a cultural ambassador, supporting cooperation between cross-functional teams and building relationships across the broader WITNESS ecosystem.
You are a self-motivated, highly organized team player to assist the Executive Director and Deputy Executive Director and provide comprehensive support for the Executive function through preparing, organizing, and driving meetings and organizational priorities, as well as liaising with the Board of Directors, Advisory Board, and allies of WITNESS.
Support the Executive Director and the Deputy Executive Director in cross-organizational planning, including tracking and monitoring cross-organizational initiatives, gatherings, and coordinating meets with set agendas and following up on action items, and assisting with managing organizational consultants
Provide support on preparation for meetings including as requested, appropriate research
Provide support to the Sr. Leadership team, including preparing meetings, conducting preparatory research, overviews or other documents, tracking action items and monitoring agendas, taking notes in team meetings, and following-up as needed with relevant material and/or additional calls
Help secure the smooth and effective functioning of the Boards’ function, as a primary board liaison, engage and inform all stakeholders, designing effective systems and workflows, maintaining schedules, preparing agendas and meetings and tracking follow-ups, and taking and filing notes accordingly
Partner with the Executive Director and relevant Committees in managing Board governance, recruitment, onboarding, engagement and inspiration, as well as maintenance of relevant policies, DEI data, and compliance with the organization’s bylaws
Maintain a “resource hub” for board members including onboarding documents, WITNESS information on programs, board structure and committee mandates, etc.
Conduct new board member research and maintain a comprehensive document to outline current prospects, track data including DEI policy and data, ensure timely conversations and status updates
Identify, maintain and improve upon systems and workflows that foster and enable knowledge and information to accessible and shared and found by the relevant team members, as related to Executive function and Board (e.g. Board “hub” or board member recruitment matrix and documentation)
Manage monthly credit card reconciliations, reimbursement requests, timesheet allocations, and related admin functions for the Executive Director and Deputy Executive Director
Add and maintain information as well as contacts within Salesforce, Gmail Contacts and other applicable data or organizational records related to Executive function, the Executive Director and the Deputy Executive Director
Plan and schedule internal and external meetings as appropriate
THE IDEAL CANDIDATE:
Experience: You have 2-3 years work experience, and a track record of hard work. Your work experience speaks to your administrative, organizational, communication, and project management achievements, interests and skills. You can demonstrate a knack for solving problems and creating effective workflows.
Human Rights: Background in or passion for human rights; committed to social justice and WITNESS’ values/mission and to a global, human rights perspective.
Project Management: Proven track record of effective project management, ability to take initiative and superb levels of organizational administration.
Communications: You are a natural communicator. Exceptional interpersonal communication and writing skills. Ability to communicate effectively and compellingly with internal and external stakeholders. With colleagues across the world, you will be equally adept at working and providing support virtually or in an office environment.
Languages: We are a global team who use English as our shared language, as such this role requires a high proficiency of written and spoken English.
Additional languages are a plus.
Organization: Excellent organizational, attention to detail and quality control, attentiveness, advanced time management skills, ability to multi-task and prioritize in a fast-paced environment.
Systems: Ability to make systems work for you and the organization (incl. Yesware, Concur, Zoom, Dropbox, and other relevant project management applications), adaptness at and prior experience particularly with G Suite, Microsoft tools.
Education: You can tell us about your degrees, but we’re more interested in what your passions are and what you can do. If your degrees are part of that story, great! (But no formal education required).
Strong interpersonal skills and aptitude for cross-cultural communication. Team-minded. A doer. Espouses good humor under pressure; inspires others. ·Strong desire and ability to keep a range of communications confidential.
You have and use your emotional intelligence, and have a strong aptitude for systems-thinking.
Location: We are a globally distributed, remote workforce; this is a full-time position, with preference for a candidate located in the U.S who is within commuting distance from NYC to allow for periodic in person meetings.
At this time, our team members are working through hybrid office arrangements, combining remote at-home work with intermittent use of offices and/or co-working spaces.
These include: USA, Mexico, Brazil, UK, Netherlands, Nigeria, Kenya.
Typically, we can only consider applicants who are already legally able to work in the country in which the role is based. Visa sponsorship or relocation allowance are rare, and offered only for specialized positions. The successful candidate must have the legal right-to-work in the location in which they will be based.
Compensation: WITNESS operates a salary localization policy using a combination of regularly reviewed FX and salary adjustment multipliers for location.
Based on current rates, gross salaries for some of our current locations are given as an example:
New York City- USD 54,250
Health: WITNESS also offers competitive and robust medical benefits that cover an individual’s medical, dental and vision at 100% and covers a % of the individual’s dependents.
Life Insurance & AD & D: WITNESS provides life insurance and AD&D payable at one time (1x) the employee’s salary, to the beneficiary, in the event an employee were to expire while employed by the organization.
Remote Work Stipend: WITNESS recognizes that flexible working arrangements are key to equity and inclusion in the workplace and we provide a $175 USD monthly remote work allowance, we are happy to talk about the type of flexible arrangements that might work best for you. This remote work stipend is provided to all staff members to pay for extra equipment, electricity, stationery, internet, wellness, or whatever an employee deems necessary in order to work remotely. Please note that a computer and basic accessories are provided to all employees at the time of hire.
Pension Contributions: After 1 year of service at the organization, WITNESS will contribute 3% of an individual’s gross salary towards a global retirement fund.
Paid Time Off: WITNESS has a range of paid time off types that support our staff.
Vacation leave: that meets local statutory levels or 15 days whichever is higher, in addition to staff’s local public holidays.
The vacation allowance increases by 5 days to 20 days after 3 years of service.
Personal / Wellness leave: 5 days staff can use at any time to recharge in recognition of the importance of supporting positive mental well being.
End of Year closure: which usually is equivalent to a minimum of 5 days leave in addition to any public holidays across the last week of December and early January.
Sick Leave: follows local statutory guidance however;
WITNESS ensures a minimum of 10 days paid time off for occasional sickness and health related absences.
A minimum of 6 weeks of full pay in instances of longer term absence.
Sabbatical Leave: At the 10 year mark we offer staff 10 weeks of paid time off in order to take a break, gain new insights and expand their horizons.
Work/ Life Balance :WITNESS believes in creating a healthy work environment in which flexible schedules are available, we also understand that sometimes an employee may just require a few hours to take care of personal issues in which case they can adjust their hours to make up for the time instead of taking a full day of leave. Both are allowable once agreed upon with the departmental supervisors.
Mental Health Policy: WITNESS feels that all employees should feel supported both physically as well as mentally while they are at work and realizes that many times the issues that we deal with, the materials that we watch and the events surrounding some of the work that we do, can lead to feeling “unwell” and not in a “good space”.
Should a situation arise in which an Employee requests support on mental health, WITNESS will award (10) days of “WITNESS” paid leave.
Professional Development: In support of the growth and development of our staff, WITNESS regularly seeks opportunities for professional development, exposure to new skills and supports a culture of learning.
As part of this we offer staff Reading Days (1 day per month) where staff can take a day to read, study and connect more deeply with peers, partners and colleagues to further functional knowledge relevant to their role or deepen their general understanding and ability to support human rights work.
HOW TO APPLY
If you are interested in joining the WITNESS team, please apply through BambooHR. You will need to attach your resume, cover letter, and contact information for 3 references.
Please include a cover letter. We are interested in hearing about what you’ve done, what you can do, and what you want to do at WITNESS.
Please note that if you are applying via a link in a 3rd party system (Indeed, Glassdoor, LinkedIn, Zip Recruiter etc), be sure that you are going through the application link in BambooHR.
APPLICATION DEADLINE: Applications are accepted on a rolling basis until candidates have been shortlisted; early applications encouraged. Please note that due to the volume anticipated, we will not be able to respond individually to each applicant. We kindly ask that you do not send duplicate applications via mail or email, and no phone calls. No recruiters please.
WITNESS is a global human rights organization and aims to build an inclusive workforce that is reflective of the communities we work with. We are interested in building a talented team that brings their true selves with diverse backgrounds, cultures and perspectives. We are interested in receiving applications from those who are marginalized and underrepresented.
WITNESS is an equal opportunity employer. People of all ages, races, ethnicities, national origins, religions, genders, gender identities and expressions, sexual orientations, and individuals protected by any other statuses under international federal, state or local laws, including but not limited to, disability, marital, domestic partnership, familial, caregiver, transgender, military or veteran statuses, are encouraged to apply.