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Lifebox Foundation

Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

About Lifebox Foundation

Launched in 2011 by four of the world’s leading medical organizations, Lifebox is the only NGO devoted to safer surgery in low-resource countries. Lifebox has made surgery and anesthesia safer for 10 million patients, building new networks across professional, academic and commercial organizations in more than 100 countries worldwide. Lifebox prioritizes the most invisible, essential component of any complex system: safety.

Since its founding, Lifebox has distributed lifesaving oximeters and training to benefit over 10,000 operating  and recovery rooms in countries around the globe. In 2015, Lifebox launched a second technical stream of work called Clean Cut, aimed at reducing the incidence of surgical site infections in resource poor countries. Clean Cut is currently in pilot phase in Ethiopia.

About the Role

Lifebox Foundation seeks a chief executive officer for Lifebox Global, which comprises Lifebox Foundation in the UK and Lifebox Foundation, Inc. in the US. The CEO will provide visionary, and outwardly focused leadership with the support of a strong COO. The CEO will report to the Board of Lifebox UK and US through the global Board Chair. Direct reports include the COO, the Development Officer, and the Director of Communications and Strategic Partnerships.


  • Communicate, articulate, and develop Lifebox’s vision for saving lives through safer surgery, in cooperation with the global board, the public, media, professional associations, NGOs, industry, present and future partners, ministries of health and other government bodies, and at international conferences, the World Health Assembly, through WHO, regional institutions and others.
  • Use Lifebox’s growing base of support among individual, foundation, and institutional donors to increase revenue from $1.5-2 million USD per year to a growth target of $5 million.
  • Working with the COO, ensure that the activities of Lifebox Global are fiscally responsible, comply with all national and international regulatory requirements, and meet the highest ethical standards.
  • Work closely and collaboratively with the COO of Lifebox Global to develop and execute a plan to expand Lifebox programs, resources, and visibility to meet the organization’s strategic goals.
  • Work closely with the global Board on organizational strategy and governance issues, and maintains clear and open lines of communication to the global Board regarding key issues.

Desirable Experience & Characteristics

  • Extensive leadership experience in international development or global health NGO—or other relevant institution.
  • On the ground experience working in low and middle income countries.
  • Aptitude and enthusiasm for major gifts fundraising and relationship building.
  • Extensive global networks.
  • Ability to hold one’s own credibly with sophisticated clinical and technical leaders. Clinical background would be an advantage, but not essential.
  • Willingness to travel.
  • Ability to lead through influence and persuasion as well as through direct lines of authority.
  • Visionary, entrepreneurial, and creative.
  • Ability to delegate and work in collaborative teams.
  • Unquestionable integrity.
  • The CEO is expected to be based at either the London or Boston office, while spending significant time at the other.

Key Performance Indicators

First 12 months:

  • Establish a relationship with the Board and staff that is open, collegial, and transparent.
  • Maintain revenue streams at a level that sustains the organization.
  • Work with the board and COO to produce Lifebox’s next 3-5 year strategic plan.
  • With the COO, develop KPIs and an operational plan to reach the key goals within 3-5 years.
  • With the COO, build the necessary internal team to support the new structure.

Within 2-5 years:

  • Increase revenue to $5 million annually.
  • Scale up oximetry programs to distribute 3,500 oximeters a year.
  • Roll out Clean Cut throughout Ethiopia into at least two additional countries, and fundraise for its expansion.
  • Work with the Board and staff to identify a third organizational work stream and begin its implementation.
  • With the COO, recruit and retain the expanded staff needed to support organizational growth.