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Precision Genetics and Plant Genome Editing

CTI has been retained by a leading global research center, CIMMYT (Mexico) to assist in the identification of an innovative scientist/leader with a passion for translational research, biotechnology, and precision genetics tools. This Precision Genetics Lead will fulfill a key role in our client’s global research organization as they develop next-generation products for major smallholder crops, collaborating with public, private, and CGIAR breeding teams located in various parts of the world. As is clear through the following detail, this is a high-impact role at a major life sciences employer in the international sector.

CIMMYT seeks an accomplished scientist with a demonstrated successful record of research applying biotech and precision genetic tools to crop plants with valuable traits. In what is a very applied laboratory research and leadership position, this scientist will lead a team working with sorghum, pearl millet, groundnut, maize, and wheat in CIMMYT’s world-class biotechnology laboratory/glasshouse facilities at their world headquarters in Texcoco (40 km from Mexico City). She/he will focus on research in the laboratory and contained biosafety glasshouses while establishing international collaborations both “upstream” for discovery research, and “downstream” for the deployment of genome-edited products through CIMMYT’s and CGIAR’s relevant breeding programs.

The roles and responsibilities will be diverse and require an individual with expertise in molecular biology and applied biotechnological research. We’re looking for an enthusiastic and highly motivated scientist to design and lead three very important research programs that involve both public and private sector partnerships. The goal at CIMMYT is to avail these germplasm products to farmers in low- and middle-income countries through partnerships with National Programs, seed companies, CGIAR, and external partners’ breeding programs. Those partners will be rapidly developing new climate-smart, disease- and pest-resilient, nutritionally-enhanced and productive crop varieties for sustainable agri-food systems. As with all CGIAR initiatives, the work is supported by a long-term commitment from donors who have passionate interests in improving livelihoods for smallholders in rural communities.

She/he will lead and contribute to CIMMYT’s applied biotechnology group and CGIAR’s precision genetics portfolio. This position reports to the Director of CIMMYT’s Genetic Resources Program.

Responsibilities include:

  • Lead and build the CIMMYT biotechnology team of scientists, students, and consultants ensuring excellent research quality and productivity, effective teamwork, and efficient management.
  • As Principal Investigator, ensure the achievement of milestones, outputs, and reporting requirements for three ongoing genome editing projects: Lethal Necrosis resistance in maize, delayed rancidity (extended flour shelf life) in pearl millet, and reduced aflatoxin in groundnut.
  • Ensure compliance by all staff and work with world-class stewardship standards and procedures; as per Excellence Through Stewardship (ETS).
  • Ensure compliance of all projects with international best practices and institutional biosafety and intellectual property policies, procedures, and agreements.
  • In scientific partnerships within and beyond CIMMYT, apply and optimize biotechnological and advanced breeding tools toward trait discovery, technology/ product development, and translational activities.
  • Lead or contribute to fundraising efforts to support and expand priority research with CIMMYT’s and CGIAR crop improvement programs/teams.
  • Publish research results in high-quality international refereed journals.

Required academic qualifications, skills, and competencies:

  • Ph.D. in Applied Biotechnology, Molecular Genetics, or a similar field with an emphasis on agricultural applications.
  • At least 10 years of relevant post-PhD professional experience, with demonstrated expertise in genome editing, and success in developing applied products in collaboration with breeding programs.
  • Passion for applied research and targeting priority crops/traits of resource-poor farmers.
  • Demonstrated leadership experience managing a biotechnology laboratory with responsibility for research, stewardship, financial, and human resources.
  • Strong understanding of international regulatory frameworks, intellectual property regimes, and excellent stewardship procedures for novel breeding technologies, including genome editing.
  • Excellent verbal and written science communication skills; superb consensus-building skills as well.
  • International experience, cultural awareness, and demonstrated ability to work effectively with diverse partners.

The requirements listed above are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential functions.

If you are interested in this role or can provide suggested contacts for CTI on this search, please contact us in confidence. Our search is not confidential and this document may be redistributed.

Dave Jensen, Managing Director
(928) 274-2266 Cell
davejensen@careertrax.com
Skype: daveproactive

To apply for this job email your details to davejensen@careertrax.com