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Genome Sciences has an outstanding opportunity for a Program Director, Pandemic Research and BBI Operations .
The individual hired to this position will serve as the Program Director for the Seattle Flu Study (SFS), a major initiative to understand the occurrence and transmission of respiratory disease, and interventions for current and potential pandemics. This position would also direct other pandemic-related initiatives such as the Seattle Coronavirus Assessment Network (SCAN). SFS and SCAN bring together medical, public health and research organizations working together to understand the spread of respiratory pathogens like COVID-19 in the greater Seattle region. The goal of this research is to understand the disease transmission, outbreak dynamics and potential interventions and, along with other data sources, help inform public health decisions.
This is a complex position involving day-to-day management of operations across a complex team, the direction and coordination of efforts by lab personnel, computational biologists, clinicians, staff, and faculty at all three Brotman Baty Institute for Precision Medicine (BBI) affiliated institutions: the University of Washington (UW), the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle Children’s Hospital, as well as external partners (e.g. other health networks, Gates Ventures, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, large local employers, Federal Drug Administration (FDA), the Centers from Disease Control (CDC), Public Health Seattle King County, WA Department of Health, etc.), and other funders. This position involves multi-disciplinary areas including genomics, infectious disease, computational modeling, and clinical testing to perform the centralized responsibilities across research groups and bring together a cohesive scientific platform.
The Seattle Flu Study and the Seattle Coronavirus Assessment Network comprise a major initiatives with the potential to transform the paradigm for how pathogens with pandemic activity or potential are monitored and controlled. In brief, we accrue samples from a sizable fraction of cases of influenza-like illness (ILI) within the Seattle metropolitan area and subject them to high-throughput testing for multiple respiratory pathogens (e.g. influenza, SARS-CoV-2, RSV, etc.). In addition to more traditional clinical sources, samples will collected directly from participants through research studies and at-home collection. Individuals with influenza-like symptoms can register online, receive a package with a specimen collection kit, self-collect a nasal swab, and return it by mail. Participants will also be engaged in settings such as workplaces, daycares, homeless shelters and other community sites or high traffic sites. Specimens will be rapidly tested and sequenced as they arrive into the lab. The resulting data will yield an unprecedentedly deep view into pathogen transmission and evolution in the course of a respiratory season. As equally important outcomes, this project will create a testbed for running trials of non-pharmaceutical interventions in a community setting, as well as an open-source data/technology stack of pathogen genomes, recruitment tools, experimental protocols, collection devices and analysis software that will facilitate worldwide collaboration during the current and any future pandemics.
The Program Director will ensure oversight of the SFS/SCAN and associated programs within the BBI including:
50%, Cross functional management of scientific research program activities
(1) Community sampling: Drive operations for sample collection required to meet scientific aims, guide and track methods for collection towards outlined objectives to ensure appropriate sample from community. This includes management of various recruitment methods (web-base, partner engagement, etc.) and logistics of test-kit development, delivery and return
(2) Clinical Testing: Oversee the workflow needed for clinical testing and enrollment of participants, as well as direct-to-participant mailings of nasal swab collection kits.
(3) Laboratory operations: Guide laboratory workflows and oversee protocol improvement for high-throughput diagnostics and viral genome sequencing.
(4) Bioinformatics: Ensure ongoing functionality and development of an end-to-end bioinformatics database with the ability to perform epidemiological analyses of testing results, assembly of genomes, and phylogenetic reconstruction of transmission chains.
(5) Scientific research program strategy and relations. The Program Director will engage directly with the Principal Investigators through weekly meetings to provide strategic input, advise on research developments, and facilitate interactions with other scientific groups, collaborators or entities.
This position will require operational management across a complex program, including the ability to track and report progress across varied workstreams and ensure all pieces are functioning together towards research objectives.
15%, Oversee drafting and compilation of proposals for funding
The Program Director will work collaboratively with the Principal Investigators to draft and finalize a detailed research plan that includes a description of the yearly studies and provide scientific input on the development of additional proposals to fulfill the research objectives/goals. Drive the proposal development process, including compiling budgets, setting metrics and milestones, tracking documents, and reporting mechanisms. The Program Director will organize outside collaborators or vendors to supplement project studies as necessary (e.g. technology development, outreach and communication partners) and build them into proposals as needed.
15%, Finance oversight and reporting
Working with the Sr. Central Project Manager, the Program Director will be responsible for distribution and allocation of funds, program management, reporting of quarterly budget reports, central coordination of project managers dedicated to each study, metric and milestone tracking, inter-institutional agreements, and oversight of centralized BBI platform activities related to laboratory testing, logistics and study participant support.
10%, Provide strategic insight and roadmap for operational efficiencies within the BBI
In addition to the core activities related to respiratory disease research and management of on-going funded programs, the Program Director will work closely with the BBI Scientific Director, Administrative Director and Scientific Leadership Team, Advisory Board and BBI Investigators to develop operational programs that extend the capabilities of the BBI to support cutting-edge personalized medicine. This work will entail strategic input on organizational structure, technical and administrative support, and core activities needed for future growth.
10%, Interaction with external and internal stakeholders
The SFS/SCAN and BBI have significant interactions with collaborating institutes to support program goals, which would be overseen by the Program Director. These include close collaborations and communication with local public health authorities (county and state), regulatory agencies, distribution of scientific materials to support similar activities, promotion of the program through BBI and UW outreach, development of additional funding streams that utilize the BBI/ SFS/SCAN platform, agreements with other technology, healthcare partners, or philanthropic entities. The Program Director will meet frequently with the sponsors to apprise them of achievements toward individual scientific and overall programmatic goals.
Advanced degree (e.g. MD, PhD) with a minimum of 10 years of post-degree experience in the management of complex scientific projects or programs in a relevant field such as genomics or genetics or infectious disease epidemiology.
Equivalent education/experience will substitute for all minimum qualifications except when there are legal requirements, such as a license/certification/registration.
Deep knowledge of one or more of the following: genomics, infectious disease epidemiology, computational modeling, or clinical testing. Knowledge of and familiarity with UW School of Medicine and Health Sciences colleges and departments is desired but not required.
As a UW employee, you will enjoy generous benefits and work/life programs. For a complete description of our benefits for this position, please visit our website, click here.
The application process for UW positions may include completion of a variety of online assessments to obtain additional information that will be used in the evaluation process. These may include Work Authorization, Cover Letter and/or others. Any assessments that you need to complete will appear on your screen as soon as you select “Apply to this position”. Once you begin an assessment, it must be completed at that time; if you do not complete the assessment, you will be prompted to do so the next time you access your “My Jobs” page. If you select to take it later, it will appear on your "My Jobs" page to take when you are ready. Please note that your application will not be reviewed, and you will not be considered for this position until all required assessments have been completed.
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