Reports To: Chief Operating Officer
Job Type: Full-time
Region: United States
Location: Cambridge, MA or remote in the US
Start Date: Immediate
Contact: Please apply by filling out the form below.
The General Counsel (the “GC”) is responsible for building and maintaining the in-house legal function (including compliance) and identifying, counseling on, and facilitating management of enterprise risk. As the sole legal counsel and subject matter expert, the GC provides legal advice at all levels of the organization, across all departments, and in a range of standard and non-standard circumstances. The GC serves Root Capital’s global operations with an emphasis on facilitating transactions, improving transactional processes, advising Root Capital leadership on a broad portfolio of issues, advising the Board of Directors as fiduciaries, improving internal structures for legal compliance, participating in crisis management and business continuity planning, and serving as a key resource in the development and advancement of new business initiatives.
Mission & History of Root Capital
Root Capital is a nonprofit whose mission is to grow rural prosperity and build the resilience of farming families around the world. We support the growth of agricultural enterprises so they can transform rural communities. These businesses purchase crops such as coffee, cocoa, or grains from smallholder farmers. With growth, they become engines of impact that can raise incomes, create jobs for the next generation of leaders, level the playing field for women, and take urgent action against climate change.
We supply these businesses with vital credit and capacity building to foster their growth and resilience. We work in hard-to-serve communities where others don’t. To date, we’ve distributed $1.6 billion to improve the lives of over 10 million people in farming families. Headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Root Capital currently has associated offices in Costa Rica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Colombia, Peru, Ghana, and Kenya.
Counsel and Support for Root Capital Legal Issues (100%)
- Facilitate lending transactions, represent Root Capital in all legal matters (including, but not limited to, as borrower, grantee, lender, counterparty, IP holder, and securities issuer), conduct legal research as needed, advise on process improvements, manage and instruct outside counsel (US and foreign), and all other legal work as required.
- Provide leadership for long-term projects with legal components such as oversight of Root Capital’s organizational insurance portfolio, real estate transactions, improvement of various internal processes, and generally promoting a culture of legal responsibility and awareness.
- Cultivate and manage key organizational relationships with pro bono law firms, local counsel worldwide, and members of the impact investment and social entrepreneurship community; allocate pro bono legal resources across the organization, as needed, to obtain specialized assistance on legal matters.
- Cultivate and manage relationships with colleagues across the organization to understand potential legal issues germane to the activities of their departments and planned initiatives and advise on same, with a focus on facilitating the strategic growth of Root Capital’s business.
- Provide counsel to management and to the Board of Directors as appropriate.
Perform other relevant duties as assigned.
Skills and Experience
- Seven to ten (7-10) years of experience in general corporate legal practice with strong knowledge of entity creation (structuring), lending transactions and securities law with a focus on regulation of debt offerings
- Admitted or eligible for admittance to practice in Massachusetts; admission to practice in New York is an advantage
- Spanish fluency is highly desirable, as is international transactions experience and working with local counsel in foreign jurisdictions
- Knowledge of and/or experience with non-profit organizations and applicable laws is an advantage
- In-house experience strongly preferred; however, law firm experience with focused specialization in relevant disciplines is an advantage
- Extensive experience in drafting, reviewing, and negotiating transactions, particularly loans (including syndicated loans), intercreditor agreements, debentures, and other documentation related to small-scale lending operations
- Highly responsive and client-oriented with strong problem-solving ability and the capacity to balance multiple projects
- Able to provide balanced, timely responses and to tailor legal advice to different constituencies in a fluid and fast-moving environment
- Experience in managing legal issues in international markets, particularly Africa and Latin America
- Excellent interpersonal and communications skills, able to provide clear, well-reasoned advice (and stand by it) to everyone from the CEO to the newest employee
- Able to deftly integrate the legal function with the business function, balancing the need for effective legal risk management and strong transaction quality, with the need to advance Root Capital’s mission
- Knowledgeable about the business, social, and political contexts in which Root Capital exists, with the ability to incorporate those contexts into legal analysis and problem solving
- Collaborative team player with a good sense of humor
- Passion for Root Capital’s commitment to worldwide poverty alleviation and environmental conservation
- Ability to build strong relationship with people of all backgrounds
Commensurate with experience.
More information about Root Capital is available at www.rootcapital.org. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Candidates are encouraged to apply using the form below as soon as possible, making sure to include a resume and cover letter that describes your interest, qualifications, language abilities, salary requirements, and how you learned of the position. Finalist candidates will be required to provide at least three work-related references.