Finance & Operations Associate, Central America

Panama City
Full Time
Program (Division)
Access Programs - Global Malaria


Founded in 2002, by President William J. Clinton and Ira C. Magaziner, the Clinton Health Access Initiative, Inc. ("CHAI") is a global health organization committed to saving lives, reducing the burden of disease and strengthening integrated health systems in the developing world. 


CHAI's global malaria program provides direct technical and operational support to countries around the globe to strengthen their malaria programs and reduce the burden of this preventable, treatable disease. We support governments to scale up effective interventions for prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and surveillance, with the goals of sustainably reducing the number of malaria-related illnesses and deaths worldwide in the short-term and accelerating progress towards malaria elimination in the long term.


Overview of Role:

CHAI is seeking a highly motivated individual to work as the Finance & Operations Associate, Central America in support of its regional team in Central America and Hispaniola. This team currently works across three main countries in the region to rapidly re-orient national malaria programs toward elimination by providing technical support to governments and actively preparing the region for sustainable elimination by 2020. 


This position will provide operational, financial, and administrative support to the regional malaria team while working closely with staff across all levels of the organization, including CHAI's Boston-based operations, human resources and finance teams. 

The Finance & Operations Associate will report to and help the Regional Operations Director to open new country offices, set up and oversee the necessary operational systems to facilitate programmatic activities, support the recruitment of new staff members, undertake the finance and accounting tasks according to global policies, and support successful program implementation.


The ideal candidate for this role will have outstanding analytical, organizational, interpersonal and communication skills to the support the operational, human resources, financial and administrative aspects of the program. The candidate must be able to function independently and flexibly and have the demonstrated ability to lead in a challenging professional environment. CHAI places great value on relevant personal qualities: resourcefulness, entrepreneurialism, tenacity, independence, humility, passion for the mission, and strong work ethic. 


This position is based in Panama and requires travel to various countries in the region.


Finance and Accounting:

  • Manage processes and tools for planning, budgeting and programmatic and financial reporting
  • Prepare and present comprehensive presentations on key financial metrics
  • Partner with the Boston-based Accounting and Accounts Payables teams to maintain the general ledger, update accounting software (QuickBooks) on a daily basis, and retain up-to-date financial records and supporting documentation as required
  • Provide relevant information and support for all internal and external audit requests in partnership with the Internal Audit team as needed
  • Complete Accounts Payable processes within established deadlines and in accordance with CHAI finance policies
  • Verify invoices and payment requests, prepare payments and monthly bank reconciliations, complete supporting documentation, and ensure accurate recording of all transactions
  • Create and maintain a database of financial payments
  • Maintain petty cash, record all transactions and ensure correct monthly reconciliations
  • Maintain records of all incoming payments and transfers
  • Prepare monthly cash-forecast
  • Prepare timely and accurate monthly financial reports
  • Provide financial analyses and special project support as required
  • Work closely with the Boston-based Payroll team to ensure accuracy of employee payroll records and timely payroll processing

Contracts & Registrations:

  • Partner with the Regional Operations Director and CHAI’s Registration and Contracts team, to support the registration and MoU processes in new countries
  • Support relationships with local legal counsel on all compliance-related initiatives
  • Partner with the Regional Operations Director to develop and manage contracts with consultants/subcontractors and partners, including coordination of follow-up, reporting, invoicing, and payment, in collaboration with CHAI’s Contracts and Finance teams in Boston

Human Resources

  • Partner with CHAI’s Talent Acquisition team to support and facilitate the hiring process,
  • Complete administrative work related to HR processes, including but not limited to onboarding, off boarding, changes in benefits, etc.
  • Coordinate the work permit and business visa processes and applications for all international staff
  • Securely and confidentially maintain all personnel records and ensure the Boston-based HR team has updated data for all staff members
  • Maintain calendar of all upcoming expirations of employment and service provider contracts, ensuring timely renewals and action taken as needed
  • Maintain knowledge of and ensure compliance with employment-related laws and regulations in all countries CHAI is conducting work
  • Provide day-to-day HR administrative support of approximately 20 staff working across multiple countries in the region
  • Support Regional Operations Director in providing guidance and content ideas for staff development and training, in partnership with Global HR
  • Serve as a resource for all staff members by being available and accessible to discuss any human resource-related questions

Administrative Support

  • Serve as the point person for office administrative duties, including but not limited to office maintenance and organization, greeting visitors, mailing, maintaining equipment, and procuring supplies
  • Update and maintain office policies and procedures as necessary
  • Liaise with facility management vendors, including cleaning, catering, utilities and security services
  • Plan and organize all meetings, including coordination with external parties, researching venues, ordering food, arranging transportation for participants, etc.
  • Ensure appropriate arrangements for visitors are made, including airport pickups, hotel and air bookings, and other travel arrangements as requested
  • Assist with any other responsibilities as assigned by Regional Operations Director


  • Bachelor’s degree in business administration, economics, accounting, or other relevant field,
  • Minimum of 5 years of professional experience in accounting/finance/management/HR
  • Experience with exposure to general ledger and budgets.
  • Familiar with Panamanian legislation (labor, tax, accounting, etc)
  • Very strong quantitative skills, including significant experience working in excel on budgeting, financial analysis and modeling
  • Excellent organizational and problem solving skills; detail oriented
  • Strong communication skills, including the ability to prepare compelling presentations
  • Ability to multi-task and to be effective in high-pressure situations; ability to work independently on complex projects
  • Willingness and flexibility to travel regionally (10 -20%)
  • Ability to work under pressure, as a team player as well as an individual
  • Ability and willingness to work with discretion in confidential matters
  • Excellent written and oral communications skills
  • Spanish and English fluency (written and oral)


  • Familiarity with QuickBooks
  • Experience working in multiple countries in the region
  • Panamanian work permit
  • Certified Public Accountant


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