New England Aquarium
  • Anderson Cabot Center for Ocean Life NEAq
  • Boston, MA, USA
  • Salary
  • Full Time Regular

The New England Aquarium (NEAq) seeks a strategic Director of Operations for Anderson Cabot Center for Ocean Life ("Anderson Cabot Center"), the NEAq's dynamic new research and conservation organization. This position will serve as a second source of operational leadership under the VP of the Anderson Cabot Center, operationalizing a new strategic plan, building a new culture and set of operational processes, and overseeing all daily operations and administrative staff, programmatic affairs, and operations. This position will also work very closely with other Aquarium departments most extensively Finance, Development, Marketing and Communications and Human Resources in all matters pertaining to the streamlining of operational processes to more seamlessly integrate the Anderson Cabot Center with the greater NEAq community.


  1. Work with the VP of Anderson Cabot Center, Anderson Cabot Center staff and rest of Aquarium leadership to ensure the Anderson Cabot Center achieves strategic goals, including helping to establish performance expectations and required competencies, while fostering a culture built on collaboration and entrepreneurial thinking both within and between the Anderson Cabot Center and other departments.
  2. Partner with VP of the Anderson Cabot Center to facilitate the development and implementation of operating practices, procedures, key performance indicators and reporting dashboards to increase the Anderson Cabot Center's effectiveness, efficiency, transparency and accountability.
  3. Oversee the pre- and post-award grant/contract administration processes, in collaboration with principal investigators/project leads, administrative staff of the Anderson Cabot Center, and the Aquarium's Development and Finance departments. Develop consistent approach for project budget development and monitoring; coordinate and reconcile project expenses and accounting with Finance; ensure project reporting deliverables and milestones, are met.
  4. Lead and oversee Anderson Cabot Center annual budgeting and planning process, to generate annual budget projections that support operational and research needs, program goals, and growth opportunities.
  5. Coordinate with appropriate Aquarium departments on all matters related to Anderson Cabot Center infrastructure needs, including offices, Lubec field station, laboratory, meeting spaces, etc.
  6. Provide daily oversight and guidance to ensure effective processes, communications, and interplay between Anderson Cabot Center staff and other key departments, such as Marketing and Communications, Human Resources, Finance, IT, Facilities, etc.
  7. As needed, participate in Aquarium committees, attend and present at internal forums, represent the Anderson Cabot Center at partner meetings and other donor coordinated events, and stay abreast of current best practices in research administration.
  8. Special projects and additional duties where needed.



Minimum Training and Experience

  • Requires a minimum bachelor's degree in business, administration or environmental management (Master's degree in the highly preferred, as is a direct focus or experience in the environmental sector).
  • 7-10 years of experience in large-scale project management, grant/contract administration, operations and financial aspects of donor funded projects
  • 5 or more years in a leadership/project management role, preferably in an academic/non-profit research environment.
  • Previous leadership experience with budget and/or grant/contract management and compliance.
  • Experience leading or playing a key role during a process of organizational evolution and change management strongly preferred.


 Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Passion for the NEAq's ocean conservation mission and appreciation for science-based solutions.
  • Experience working collaboratively with scientists and managing administrative staff
  • Proven experience and success in an operational leadership role with exceptional managerial skills. Ability to set clear expectations with staff and to foster a productive work environment
  • Adept at designing and instituting new operational processes, procedures and key performance indicators requiring collaboration with individuals and departments across the organization as well as external sources and constituents
  • Deep knowledge and expertise in grants and contracts administration including federal compliance regulations, preferably with a scientific research focus
  • Emotional intelligence, with experience working with various personality types, temperaments and styles, in establishing organizational trust and resolving conflicts.
  • Project management experience, with success reaching across party lines to help drive changes in an organization.
  • Very strong interpersonal and written and verbal communication skills.
  • Exceptional analytical, organizational, and problem solving skills, with high attention to detail.
  • Capacity to maintain confidentiality concerning financial and employee files and other sensitive information.
  • Use of PC-based systems is required, including extensive familiarity with Microsoft Office Suite.


For more information and to apply online please visit:

 New England Aquarium is committed to diversity in the workplace and is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer as defined by the EEOC.

New England Aquarium
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