Nicaragua Operations Lead

Vega Coffee
Esteli, Nicaragua
Deadline for Applications
Where to Apply
Noushin Ketabi


Vega Coffee ( is re-imagining the coffee experience by connecting coffee lovers with coffee growers throughout the world. We train small-scale specialty coffee farmers to expertly roast their coffee and bypass middlemen, and sell our coffee subscriptions directly to consumers in the US and beyond. By taking on more of the value chain, our farmers earn four times more income, while Vega customers receive high-quality specialty coffee at a value. We are committed to promoting gender equality at every step of our supply chain, and in our current operations in Nicaragua, more than 90% of our farmer-roasters are women.


We are looking for a high energy, socially minded individual who is not afraid to wear a lot of hats. You are looking for more than a job, but rather, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to join an energetic team of change-makers committed to creating a new, more equitable and sustainable coffee experience for farmers and coffee lovers alike.


Our team is currently seeking a Nicaragua Operations Lead. This position is based in Esteli, Nicaragua at Vega’s Nicaragua HQ. The Nicaragua Operations Lead will report to Vega’s co-founders, and work closely with the Nicaragua Branch Manager.


Vega Training & Roasting Center Operations

  • Work closely with founders to ensure execution of strategic goals for Nicaragua operations, and maintain open lines of communication with regards to center operations
  • Craft comprehensive written operations protocol for Nicaragua center with founding team and Nicaragua Branch Manager – formalizing operations protocol, sanitation plan, training framework, etc.
  • Schedule and oversee all aspects of Vega training and roasting sessions at least twice a month, including trainings on brewing and cupping techniques and strict oversight of product quality control
  • Create and implement, in collaboration with leadership team, clear and effective compensation structure for farmer-roasters that’s transparent, fair and motivating
  • Maintain utmost sanitation at the center, including staying up-to-date on necessary government health licenses
  • Manage center inventory and budget with Nicaragua Branch Manager and maintain precise and timely expense tracking with clear communication to co-founders
  • Manage, along with Nicaragua Branch Manager, staffing needs and address concerns and performance challenges on a regular basis
  • Support analysis of Vega’s social impact in Nicaragua center operations
  • Apply innovative approaches to operational challenges on a regular basis and exercise flexibility in dynamic HQ work environment

Outreach to Farming Partners & Other Organizations

  • Direct outreach to farming communities to introduce Vega to new communities, promote relationships with existing partners, and grow our on-the-ground impact
  • Ensure that Vega’s green coffee buying contracts are fair, promote gender equity and create proper economic incentives, while promoting social and environmental standards
  • Recruit new farmer-roasters through outreach and “open door” trainings
  • Build partnerships with outside organizations and industry partners in order to connect farmers to critical resources, such as land use technicians, agrarian experts, and social programs, as needed

Legal & Financial Duties

  • Coordinate all exports, securing proper documentation from all authorities and oversee hand-off to Nicaraguan export agent and US import agent
  • Provide accountant with all information and documentation necessary in order to consistently maintain current tax status and submit to CETREX export authorities
  • Contribute to Vega company communications, including newsletter, social media, and interviews
  • Serve as accessible, reliable on-the-ground contact for founders, vendors and partners, and coordinate visits to the center


  • Must be able to travel 1-2 times/week within Nicaragua, possibly more in harvest season
  • Possibility of traveling outside the country


  • Passion and commitment to Vega’s mission to build a more equitable and sustainable coffee experience
  • 2+ years of experience of professional experience in project management, including staff and financial management
  • 2+ years of experience serving as the representative of an organization to outside parties
  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent
  • Excellent project and time management skills with the ability to easily prioritize and multi-task
  • Creative thinker who thrives in conditions where required to think on the fly, adapt and problem-solve in unplanned contexts — go-getting + problem-solver with flexibility
  • Strong interpersonal skills with positive, effective and open oral and written communication
  • Professional demeanor and presentation at all times, including punctuality
  • High level of proficiency of computer software and internet, including Google Drive, Mac OS, Windows, Microsoft Office, Skype as well as social media
  • Fluency in Spanish
  • Valid driver’s license and able to drive in NicaraguaBONUS POINTS
  • Experience in coffee processing, including roasting, cupping, and packaging
  • Have experience working in Nicaragua, a start-up, and/or in commodities Graduate-level education
  • Ability to drive a manual vehicle


  • Start date flexible, but ideally no later than August 3, 2016
  • 24 hours a week, with strong potential to grow into a full-time role
  • 1 year commitment required

Additional Information

Pay commensurate with experience. Option of lodging as part of compensation is available.

Please submit a cover letter, resume and 4-5 professional references to Noushin Ketabi at Any questions may be directed to Noushin, as well.