Chief Operations Officer

The Sunrise Project, a Project of Windward Fund

  • Grade: level 2
  • Salary: $127,000 - $137,000 plus benefits
  • Location: United States, remote
  • Closing: 1:00pm, 22nd Aug 2021 MDT

Job Description

About Us

Driven by a passion to solve the climate crisis, The Sunrise Project U.S. is a team of experienced change-makers working to scale social movements to accelerate the global transition beyond fossil fuels. With affiliated programs and staff in Australia and Europe, we have developed a unique model of grant making and campaigning that supports networks of organizations to drive powerful change towards our mission. 

We have a dynamic and nimble organizational culture and we’re serious about supporting our people to thrive. We move fast and lean into the urgency of the climate challenge.

We believe that a diversity of experiences and perspectives will help us build stronger strategies, teams and movements. We strongly encourage First Nations people, people of color, people living outside of cities, and people with disability and talents to apply. We are continually working on becoming a better workplace for everyone.

About You

You’re an experienced organizational manager with a track record of leading the operations of a dynamic and fast-moving organization. You’re an all-rounder with deep experience in organizational governance and compliance in the United States, as well as extensive HR and financial management experience. You’re just as comfortable navigating spreadsheets as you are negotiating contracts or helping to manage organizational scaling in ways that avoid bureaucracy and encourage innovation.

You’re a team player who knows what it takes to create a vibrant and creative organizational culture that supports people to do their best work and enables teams to be more than the sum of their parts. You’re a structured thinker, incredibly well organized and excited at the prospect of working for a growing, dynamic organization with a mission to solve the climate crisis.

You’ll report to our Global Chief of Staff, coordinate closely with COO counterparts in other countries, and will lead an operations team to support our growing US-based team and affiliates working across multiple continents. 

About The Role

The Chief Operations Officer US (COO US) is an exciting new senior role, responsible for the rapid establishment and administration of the Sunrise Project’s US operation.

While our program teams are focused on our mission to drive the rapid shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy, your role is to lead our operations and ensure our organizational systems are tight, lean and fit for purpose as we scale our impact in the world. Spanning HR functions, financial management, risk and compliance through to organizational systems, and IT functions, this role requires big picture strategic organisational thinking as well as serious attention to operational detail.

The COO US is a newly created senior role in The Sunrise Project’s growing global operations, reporting to and working closely with the Global Finance Chief of Staff and the Chief of Operations of our network partner, Sunrise Australia.

Key Responsibilities

  • Lead the process of establishing a new 501c3 nonprofit entity, with support from legal counsel, and manage the transition of our staff and work out of our current fiscal sponsor;

  • Establish all key operational and management systems needed to support the functioning of a new 501c3 including, but not limited to: payroll, accounting, and HR systems;

  • Overall financial management of Sunrise Project Inc including management of external service providers, audit, budgeting and reporting;

  • Serve as a Company Secretary; ensure we are meeting all statutory reporting and compliance obligations, including tax returns, HR registration and reporting requirements, and charitable solicitation registration;

  • Overall responsibility for secure and efficient information management including ensuring IT support for our US team;

  • Work with other Sunrise entities to ensure our operations and organizational systems are fit for purpose, integrated where possible, and remain nimble as we scale;

  • Manage the operations team and budget and ensure they continually evolve to meet the needs of the organization; 

  • Proactively identify and manage risk and put in place appropriate risk management systems;

  • Work closely with our global leadership team to maintain a healthy, vibrant and creative work culture.

Required skills and experience    

  • At least five years’ experience in a similar or related role including unpaid, grassroots or lived experience;

  • Experience managing organizational finance and budgets (relevant qualifications in finance or accounting will be beneficial but not a requirement);

  • Strong understanding of the compliance obligations of U.S. charities;     

  • A high degree of emotional intelligence and excellent interpersonal skills;

  • A track record of managing small teams and supporting healthy team culture;

  • Flexibility, with the ability to manage complex projects and juggle a wide range of competing priorities;

  • A passion for action on climate change and a commitment to social justice;

  • You must have full working rights in the United States.

If you meet some but not all of the criteria for this position, are unsure, but you’re keen on the role - please get in touch. We value and recognize experience that has been unpaid, from the grassroots or is lived experience.

Desirable Skills and Experience   

  • Experience creating / starting up new charitable organizations a plus

  • Familiarity with grant-making compliance or administration is also not required, but would be a huge bonus.


Flexible. This role can work from home anywhere in the United States. Working on Pacific time is ideal, as this role will need to meet regularly with the COO in Australia. An eligible candidate must be authorized to work in the U.S.


Depending on experience (including unpaid and other experiences) and capacity to take on responsibility, the salary range is $127,000 - $137,000. Windward Fund’s excellent benefits package includes 401(k) employer match; 100% employer paid health, vision and dental coverage; and generous vacation policy.

How Sunrise supports its staff:

The Sunrise Project U.S. is committed to creating a workplace that supports our staff to do their best work and develop professionally. We have the following in place to help us achieve that:

  • 401(k) & employer match

  • 100% employer paid health, vision and dental coverage

  • Four weeks of paid vacation leave

  • Birthday leave (if it’s your birthday, you get a day off)

  • Cultural & solidarity leave

  • 12 weeks parental leave after 12 months of service

  • Commitment to supporting to your professional development

  • Access to an Employee Assistance Program

  • Coaching and management support with regular 1:1 meetings

  • Performance reviews and feedback to support you and the team to reflect and grow

  • A co-developed initial 3 month work plan to help you hit the ground running and have clarity on your role and responsibilities

  • Flexible work policy

Hours: Full Time

Overtime Status: Exempt

How to apply for this job

In our commitment to inclusive hiring of the best candidates, we use the Be Applied hiring system to process applications. 

The Be Applied system reduces the opportunity for unconscious bias in allowing for anonymous reviews of responses to work sample questions. This means we assess candidates on how well they demonstrate skills and communicate in response to relevant work questions. When you click on the link you will be taken to a site to start your application. You can upload a CV or resume and will be asked several questions that will be related to the role you are applying for. There is no requirement to submit a cover letter.

Statement from our US Fiscal Sponsor, Windward Fund

Sunrise US is currently a project of Windward Fund, a 501(c)(3) public charity that incubates new and innovative public-interest projects and grant-making programs. Windward Fund is committed to attracting, developing and retaining exceptional people, and to creating a work environment that is dynamic, rewarding and enables each of us to realize our potential. Windward Fund ‘s work environment is safe and open to all employees and partners, respecting the full spectrum of race, color, religious creed, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, political affiliation, ancestry, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, and all other classifications protected by law in the locality and/or state in which you are working.

Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be anonymously reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the anonymous review

Applications closed Sun 22nd Aug 2021


Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be anonymously reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the anonymous review

Start your de-biased application