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Position Summary:

Based in Rio de Janeiro and reporting to the Director of the Rio Center, the Financial Officer is responsible for the overall financial and administrative management of the Center. The Center is registered in Brazil as a non-profit civil association and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Columbia University in the United States. It is one of nine such centers around the world. The Financial Officer must be fully conversant with all respective financial and accounting practices within Brazil and with similar procedures and practices as established by Columbia University for its Global Centers.


Characteristic Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Administers accounting and treasury operations for the Center;
  • Manages all banking relationships of the Center including carefully monitoring cash positions, negotiating currency conversion rates, and overseeing all payments to suppliers;
  • Performs monthly international bank reconciliation processes in accordance with the Columbia Global Centers Standard Operating Procedures;
  • Collaborates with the programming and projects teams at the Center by analysing and approving the financial aspects of all contracts and budgets;
  • Oversees the financial and administrative aspects of grant activities at the Center (pre-award and post-award activities), including the development of new grant proposals and budgets;
  • Monitors ongoing business risk including tracking of funding, execution of contracts, authorizations, payments, and regulation of advances to subcontractors and vendors;
  • Provides services in support of the Center’s relationship with the Columbia’s Gift Office for donor-related tax reporting and monitors gift agreements
  • Assists the Center’s leadership with the preparation of the Center's annual fiscal year budget and monitors budget performance (revenues and expenses) throughout the year, including revenue and expense forecasting;
  • Responsible for the maintenance of all pertinent financial records, files, and documents; assures completeness and accuracy consistent with external and internal compliance requirements;
  • Provides services in support of the Center’s external accounting firm in Brazil in such matters as tax issues, accounting and reporting,  and annual tax filings;
  • Liaises on behalf of the Center with relevant legal departments both locally in Brazil and at Columbia University in New York City; 
  • Provides services in support of the Center’s legal entity registration compliance with the the Brazilian Federal Revenue Department and other relevant Brazilian legal and tax authorities;
  • Provides services in support of compliance with internal and external audits.


In addition, the Financial Officer collaborates on general human resource and management operation activities, including but not limited to:

  • Preparation of contracts and legal documents related to hiring and dismissal of employees and contracting of consultants and other advisors for the Center;
  • Assists the Center with payroll compliance in accordance with both local  Brazilian (CLT) and international norms and regulations;
  • Works closely with Columbia University’s Tax Office on international payroll;
  • Keeps records of employees accrued vacations and benefits.


The Financial Officer works closely with the Office of Global Centers in New York and performs other job-related duties as required by the Center Director.


Supervision Received/Exercised:

Reporting to the Director of the Rio Center.


Minimum Qualifications:

Bachelor's degree required. Post-graduate diploma preferred. Minimum three years' related experience in finance and administration of not-for-profit entities in Brazil. 


Language Requirements:

In addition to Portuguese, fluent oral and written English skills are required.


Salary and remuneration:

Commensurate with experience of the successful candidate. The Center offers a range of employment benefits in full conformity with prevailing Brazilian labor legislation and also market conditions for financial officers in similar not-for-profit entities.


Additional Qualifications:

Strong verbal, written, and interpersonal skills needed. Strong customer service focus is required. Must be able to work independently and well under pressure and coordinate multiple projects with competing priorities. Must exercise good judgment and be able to maintain confidentiality. Must be detailed-oriented, accurate, and have excellent organizational skills. Ability to work as a team player in a fast-paced environment required. Excellent computer skills, including knowledge of Excel and commonly used accounting softwares required.


Preferred Qualifications:

Knowledge of Columbia University financial policies and financial systems is a big plus. Previous experience with U.S. accounting practices. Familiarity with U.S. institutions of higher education.

Equal Opportunity: Columbia University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer – race/gender/disability/veteran

>> Applicants should email CV and Cover Letter to Ilana Cac at