View Vacancy - Sector Director, Defence, Security and Space, North America – (Maternity Leave Cover) - USA

The British Government is an inclusive and diversity-friendly employer.  We value difference, promote equality and challenge discrimination, enhancing our organisational capability. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds. We do not discriminate on the basis of disability, race, colour, ethnicity, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, age, veteran status or other category protected by law. We promote family-friendly flexible working opportunities, where operational and security needs allow.
Department for Business and Trade roles (DBT)

Main Purpose of Job:

Be part of the Department for Business and Trade’s (DBT) mission to drive more trade and investment between North America and the UK. With a mature, high spending consumer market and an open, liberal economy, world-class talent and a business-friendly regulatory environment, the UK is the leading destination for foreign investment in Europe, and the second highest investment destination in the world.  The UK is also the world’s sixth largest exporter and the second largest services exporter. 

We employ over 150 people across North America, all united by our vision of a future where we champion open and fair global trading that drives growth, creates better jobs and higher wages, and improves living standards in the UK and around the world.  We seek talented team members with the passion and drive to help us in our mission to build a global appetite for British goods and services; drive investment; negotiate trade deals and open up markets; improve international trading standards and fight unfair trading practices (see  

The temporary Sector Director, Defence, Security and Space, North America provides agile and visible leadership of a 16-person sector team across North America to ensure sector delivery of the North America network’s strategy and objectives. The role sets and implements the UK’s strategy for increasing transatlantic trade and investment in Defence, Security and Space, represents the UK Government in a range of high-profile settings and is a valued contributor to the regional team.  The job holder is also responsible for aligning DBT’s work in North America with other UK Government Departments including our UK HQ team, HM Treasury and the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development office.

Roles and responsibilities:


 As the Sector Director, Defence, Security and Space, North America, you will:

  • Lead and develop an agile and effective Defence, Security and Space sector team.
  • Shape and deliver an ambitious integrated sector business plan in consultation with stakeholders and wider UK Government Departments.
  • Using the reach of the UK Government, seek to influence effective trade policies in the UK, Canada and the US as it relates to the Defence, Security and Space industries.
  • Regularly review progress against targets to ensure effective delivery by team.
  • Using your expertise, drive strategic discussion and planning with UK-based counterparts and UK Government.
  • Work with partners on the UK Government’s broader priorities in North America, including Trade Agreements, the UK’s climate ambitions and the UK Government’s Levelling Up agenda to build long-term strategic economic initiatives.
  • Provides in-person support across North America for major events, VIP/Ministerial visits (including cabinet level ministers), or high value investment and export deals.
  • Key account management of existing and potential high value investors and trade partners, using business intelligence to influence business planning.
  • Work with marketing team to develop digital campaigns and PR to highlight successful investments and UK export deals, and showcase UK leadership and innovation.
  • Manage budget and make resource recommendations to senior leadership.
  • Any other duties as assigned.

Resources managed (staff and expenditure):

  • Strategic leadership of the Defence, Security and Space sector team of 16 people.
  • Financial responsibility for multiple programme activities that include other Government stakeholders and involve commercial sponsorships. 
  • Management of business development budget.
  • Demonstrated professional experience gained within business development or economic development role, ideally in the Defence, Security and Space industries.
  • In-depth knowledge of the Defence, Security and Space industry, major companies and trends in the US and Canada - and preferably in the UK.
  • Excellent management and leadership skills with the ability to deliver results through others.
  • Proven competence in leading strategy development and business planning.
  • Excellent stakeholder management abilities.
  • Proven advisory and influencing skills at senior levels.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal, presentation and networking skills.
  • Excellent analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • An excellent network of industry contacts and the ability to develop new networks with senior business and industry leaders.
  • Under US State Department requirements, the UK Government in the US may only employ, as non-diplomatic staff, persons who are US citizens, US Permanent Residents or A visa holders with EAD cards*. If you hold a visa other than an A visa you are not currently eligible to work at our office. Please refer to our website for information on exceptions to this policy at All selected candidates are subject to background checks and will require a security clearance prior to starting work. • A visas are acceptable at the Embassy and Consulates. The UK Mission to the UN (UKMIS) accepts G visas, and British Defence Staff (BDS) outposts accept A or NATO visas
  • An understanding of international relations and UK Government policy. 
  • An in-depth knowledge of the US and the Canadian economies.
Seeing the Big Picture, Making Effective Decisions, Delivering at Pace, Leadership, Communicating and Influencing, Developing Self and Others
5 December 2023
Grade 7 (G7)
Fixed Term, Full-time
6 months
Americas, Caribbean & Overseas Territories
United States
Boston, Houston, New York, Washington
British Consulate
Houston: $100,700, Boston/Washington DC: $110,560, New York: $118,600
22 January 2024

Learning and Development Opportunities:

The British Embassy and its US Network is committed to all employee’s ongoing learning and development needs. We actively encourage learning & development and will develop a specific plan in collaboration with the successful candidate.

As a valued member of our team we will help you to achieve your goals through continuous professional development.

The British Embassy and its US Network is committed to all employee’s ongoing learning and development needs. We offer a comprehensive platform for personalised learning for everything from soft skill development (communicating with impact, handling difficult conversations, time management) to more technical or professional skills necessary to complete your job (software training, formal qualifications etc.).

Working Patterns:

This role is 40 hours a week.

The British Embassy and its US Network embraces hybrid working, allowing its staff to typically work from home 2 or 3 times a week.  We are an organization that also recognises the critical value of teamwork, and we embrace and endorse collaboration by ensuring that all staff attend the office flexibly yet regularly. 

We offer: 

  • Generous leave package plus public holidays 
  • Generous 401k matching 
  • Excellent healthcare options 
  • Paid sick leave 
  • Generous parental leave policy 
  • A great work-life balance including flexible start and finish times and a hybrid working model with staff splitting their time between working from home and the office 
  • Short-term disability, long-term disability and life insurance coverage 
  • High quality L&D services with global sessions and events every day to help you develop and meet organisational needs, including up to 5 days paid leave each year to pursue your professional development
  • Inclusivity is one of our core values and we strive to treat everyone openly, fairly and equally.  All new team members learn about how they can contribute to an inclusive environment and the importance of diversity and inclusion

Appointable candidates who were unsuccessful may be placed on a ‘reserve list’. If during the reserve period of 6-12 months the same or a largely similar role becomes available, that role may be offered to the second or subsequent candidate. Employees who are not liable to pay local income tax on their Mission salary, eg some non-local national staff and some spouses or partners of UK diplomatic staff, will have their salaries abated by an equivalent amount. Internal candidates must inform their supervisor before they apply to a different position. Only successful candidates will be contacted. Please no phone calls. Due to the high volume of resumes we receive, we cannot guarantee consideration of your application if the submission instructions are not properly followed. The British Embassy is committed to a policy of equal opportunities and to creating a diverse working environment, free from discrimination, where everyone is included and treated fairly, based on merit alone. We are an equal opportunity employer, making all employment decisions without regard to race, gender, gender identity, religion, national origin, citizenship, disability, age, sexual orientation, political affiliation or any other criterion protected by law.

Please be aware that you will only be able to apply to vacancies for Country Based Staff roles with the British Government through this official site (operated by Oleeo). Jobs may be advertised on third party websites, however our adverts will always link back to the official site. If you complete and send an application through any other site, we will not receive it.

This opportunity is closed to applications.