Vice President - Operations


4890 Victoria Avenue North, Vineland Station, Ontario

General Outline: 

Vineland Research and Innovation Centre (Vineland) is recruiting for a Vice President, Operations to work in an industry-driven research environment. Vineland is a world-class research centre dedicated to horticultural science and innovation. Located in Canada’s Niagara Region, Vineland’s mission is to deliver innovative products and production solutions that address the needs of the horticulture industry and advance Canada’s research and commercialization agenda. We are an independent, not-for-profit organization, funded in part by the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.

Our people are the most important asset in achieving our goals and are known in the world for excellence in science and entrepreneurship. Our staff enjoys an exciting and challenging work environment noted for collaboration and knowledge sharing.

Vineland welcomes and encourages applications from people with disabilities. Accommodations are available on request for candidates taking part in all aspects of the selection process.

Must be legally entitled to work in Canada.

Duties & Responsibilities: 

The Vice President (VP), Operations reports directly to the President and CEO. The VP is responsible for Vineland's operations, safety, human resources and facilities (buildings, greenhouses and farms). The VP is a member of Vineland’s senior management team.

Key Duties & Responsibilities:


  • Provides strategic and tactical leadership on the development, implementation and enhancement of Vineland’s HS&E management system
  • Leads and manages programs that ensure employees' health & safety and the protection of the environment; ensuring compliance to health, safety and environmental laws
  • Develops and maintains Vineland’s emergency management framework
  • Develops risk communication, HS&E education/training programs and other initiatives that have a positive impact on HS&E programs, strategies and culture
  • Uses business acumen and collaboration to align the HS&E management system to operational business needs
  • Serves as principal operations liaison with the Agricultural Research Institute of Ontario and the Government of Ontario
  • Manages all Vineland physical operations including lease agreements
  • Working with Vineland’s Controller, the VP plays a key role in the financial management of the corporation through sound strategic and financial planning as well as effective and judicious allocation of approved departmental resources and monitoring of the same
  • Works with and supports Vineland’s Vice President, Research and Development to ensure effective planning, use and maintenance of research infrastructure
  • Provides oversight of all capital expansion projects, as well as routine capital, to ensure appropriate maintenance of facilities
  • Provides strategic leadership to the facilities managers for the development and execution of a comprehensive building, greenhouse and farm operations plans to obtain maximum effectiveness and efficiency of operations, to secure the highest safety standards and to enhance the overall beauty of the Vineland campus buildings, grounds and farms. This includes preventative maintenance programs, various service contracts, enhancements to buildings and grounds and appropriate response to issues of health, safety and emergencies.
  • Directs physical asset management program for all furnishings, fixtures and equipment including inventory control, asset identification, purchasing and records for replacement and insurance
  • Prepares reports and information as needed regarding governmental investments to which Vineland is accountable
  • Secures and maintains appropriate insurance for all assets and operations, including professional insurance for Vineland and board members
  • Overall responsibility for the corporation’s integrated systems and information technology infrastructure and develops and implements short- and long-term technology plans aligning with Vineland’s goals and user requirements and meet standards for integrity and security

Human Resources

  • Collaborates, advises and supports strategic objectives by working closely with senior management, Manager, Human Resources and operational team members to build and manage HR functions
  • Establishes and oversees organization-wide HR practices, programs, services, policies and processes that support the strategic direction of Vineland
  • Oversees day-to-day HR operations ensuring compliance with federal and provincial legal requirements, including employment standards, privacy, records management and human rights compliance
  • Communicates HR and employee policy and benefit policy changes and the implications to employees
  • Maintains positive relationships with the senior leadership team and other internal/ external stakeholders
  • Takes a leading role in recruitment to ensure the organization has the right talent pipeline in place
  • Consults with leadership on employee issues including disciplinary issues, selection, employee development, retention, benefits offerings, compensation philosophy and organizational development needs
  • Assists leadership with assessing skills of emerging leaders
  • Develops people management plan to drive performance management in the organization and to optimize performance within the team, and manages performance of team members, including ensuring team members comply with company policies and expectations and take appropriate action
  • Ensures effective management of Vineland’s employee benefits program


  • Develops the departmental budget and oversees expenditures in accordance with limits set by the CEO and approved by the Board of Directors
  • Serves as a member of the Vineland senior management team, assisting the CEO in the overall operation of Vineland in achieving the mission
  • Reports to the CEO as requested, and to the Board of Directors quarterly or as requested, on the progress and success of the supervised departments
  • Provides leadership in other areas of Vineland as directed by the CEO


  • An advanced degree, such as an MBA, and a minimum of 10 years of executive experience (preferably in the not-for-profit and/or research sector). An equivalent combination of education and experience may be considered.
  • Minimum of five years of senior manager experience in HS&E leadership
  • Evidence of well-developed strategic thinking and project management skills in a deadline driven environment where multi-tasking and prioritizing are constantly required
  • Demonstrated leadership ability with a commitment to building leadership capacity within Vineland
  • Understands the realities of managing within financial constraints and meeting reporting requirements
  • Excellent communication skills (written, oral, interpersonal) combined with outstanding human relations, team building and organizational skills
  • Skilled in maintaining supporting business processes, including budget control and data integrity
  • Capable of resolving issues in an open and participative manner
  • Demonstrated leadership experience with core values centered on a participative communication style with a high degree of transparency and empathy; must be willing to lead by example through walking around and communicating with all levels of the organization effectively
  • Ability to pursue, manage and monitor multiple integrated opportunities simultaneously to meet performance goals
  • Vice President level skills and experience including project management, self-motivation, goal accomplishment and work prioritization
  • Positive personal characteristics of attitude, flexibility, initiative, persistence, professional appearance and presentation and team spirit

Additional Info: 

This is a full-time permanent position.

How to Apply: 

This position is open until filled. Click on the Apply Now button.