Executive Assistant to the Chief Operating Officer

Executive Washington, District of Columbia


Location: Washington, DC
Position Status: Full-time, Regular, Exempt
Minimum Staring Salary Annualized: $53,000-$57,000 commensurate with experience 

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact. 

The Position

The Executive Assistant will focus on providing high-level executive and administrative support to the Chief Operating Officer (COO), including executive staffing, travel assistance, scheduling support and project management. The Executive Assistant (EA) will have the ability to build and maintain strong working relationships with colleagues, peer groups, and senior leadership, and work closely with OCOO team leaders. The Executive Assistant will support scheduling for the VP of Strategy Realization Unit and serve as primary backup for the EA to the CEO, as needed. They will be able to quickly and effectively summarize complex information into clear, concise writing. The Executive Assistant will have a clear understanding of Mercy Corps’ mission and collaborative style of operation with the ability to work simultaneously on multiple tasks in a fast-paced environment. The Executive Assistant will be flexible and have the ability to adapt to changing conditions and requirements. Confidentiality and professionalism are highly important to the role. 

Essential Responsibilities 

  • Support for the COO’s office for a smooth and effective management of key activities.
  • Provide support to the COO with research, prepare documents and presentations as required.
  • Record and issue minutes for key meetings and ensure timely follow through of action items.
  • Develop a cadence of meetings as part of a ‘listening tour’ for the COO with different teams, cohorts across the organization. Record action items emerging from these meetings and ensure timely actions are implemented and feedback provided to the team.
  • Provide scheduling support to the VP for Strategy Realization Unit
  • Provide travel support to COO as needed and provide support in submitting expense reports.
  • Provide planning and logistical support for key meetings, COO conferences and training events, including collection and dissemination of necessary documents, logistical support for participants, communications, and required follow-up with all parties involved.
  • Support as required for Board of Director meetings, including Joint Audit and Risk Committee meetings, and miscellaneous administrative support.
  • Maintain departmental trackers, calendars and internal web content as assigned, including Hub pages, Travel Calendar, and Digital Library.
  • Provide proofreading, editing, and formatting support for department documents, including manuals, training materials, reports, etc.
  • Coordinate with the Operations Team leaders to prepare monthly/quarterly/annual reports.
  • Coordinate with vendors, support with procurement and submit Operations team-related invoices for payment.
  • Serve as administrative back-up support for the EA to the CEO  


Reports Directly To: Chief Operating Officer

Works Directly With: COO, VP for SRU, COS/DCOO, Executive Team, GPL, IT, A+F, Compliance, Innovation teams 

Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects. 

Minimum Qualification & Transferable Skills

  • BA in a relevant field required - or equivalent years of professional experience
  • A minimum of 3+ years of professional experience in a fast-paced environment.
  • Excellent communication and the ability to handle confidential matters appropriately.
  • Strong computer literacy required including MS Office Suite and Google tools
  • Strong interpersonal skills and experience with coordination and management of travel schedules, meeting, and report compilation.
  • Proven ability to prioritize multiple competing requests, tasks, deadlines, and needs.
  • Strong analytical skills and the ability to effectively gather and summarize large amounts of information from various sources.
  • Prior experience with executive staffing, including executive meeting preparation, schedule management and travel arrangements strongly desired.
  • Ability to take initiative and complete work or solve problems with minimal guidance.
  • Sensitivity, skill and experience with public relations and correspondence to a wide variety of public constituents including media, donors, U.S. Government officials and international delegates as necessary.
  • Experience maintaining a high level of confidentiality on sensitive matters
  • Demonstrated ability to work well under pressure and cooperatively with team members.
  • The ability to take direction as well as work independently. 
  • Proven ability to manage effective functioning of the executive office with grace and humor.
  • International, non-profit, and government experience and/or interest are preferred.

Success Factors

The successful EA will demonstrate a healthy combination of professionalism and confidence in providing efficient administrative support to Mercy Corps’ COO. They will possess excellent communication skills, both verbal and written, and will place a high priority on attention to detail. The successful EA will be able to work both independently and cooperatively in a matrixed team environment. They must demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit, flexibility and creativity in planning and problem solving, with a proven ability to learn quickly, in a fast-paced, fluid, and challenging work environment of many competing/changing priorities and be accountable for results.

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

The position is in Washington, DC. Mercy Corps Team members represent the agency both during and outside of work hours when deployed in a field posting, on a visit/TDY to a field posting and in all in-country venues. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC's policies, procedures, and values.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC and have signed on to the Interagency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times.

As a safeguarding measure, Mercy Corps screens all potential US-Based employees. Any offers of employment or continued employment are dependent on the successful completion of the screens which include, but are not limited to our Background Check and Interagency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme processes,

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

Ongoing Learning

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development

Covid-19 Vaccine Policy for US-Based Employees

Mercy Corps has determined that, in an effort to protect the health, safety, and well-being of all Mercy Corps employees working in the United States, all U.S.-based employees must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, regardless of prior COVID-19 infection status.

This policy will be revised as needed to comply with federal, state, and local requirements, and to respond to changing guidance from public health authorities.

For new employees this requirement goes into effect within 10 business days of employment.  Team members that travel are expected to comply with host-country requirements, including vaccinations.  Failure to comply may impact your employment.  Proof of vaccination or exemption must be provided.