Senior Scientist, R&D Principal Investigator (Scientist 4)

What You Will Do

The Microbial and Biome Sciences Group (B-IOME) within LANL's Bioscience Division is seeking one or more experienced Scientists to join our Group. B-IOME aims to enable energy, environmental, and economic security through the research and development of natural and engineered biological systems. B-IOME scientists explore the use of algae and other microorganisms as robust platforms for making cost-effective biofuels and bioproducts, supported by established capabilities in non-model microbe development, synthetic biology, and high-throughput screening. B-IOME researchers also study the effects of microbes on biogeochemical cycling (e.g., carbon and nitrogen), plant productivity, and plant resilience-including microbial response to disturbance (e.g., wildfire, drought)-by harnessing 'omics, microbial ecology, and laboratory ecosystems. Finally, B-IOME scientists use computational, analysis, and protein engineering capabilities to develop tools for degrading plastic waste and for identifying place-based renewable carbon and decarbonization solutions.

You will serve as a principal investigator and will be responsible for leading and building medium-to-large interdisciplinary research teams to extend/enhance the aforementioned efforts within B-IOME. As such, you will acquire, direct, coordinate, and execute research projects to meet program/sponsor requirements and customer expectations. The successful candidate will have demonstrated technical knowledge in synthetic biology, biochemistry, biomanufacturing, molecular biology, bioenergy/biofuels, microbiomes, microbial ecology, plant sciences, and/or high throughput screening, and a record of developing innovative solutions to overcome technical challenges. The successful candidate will:
  • Develop innovative approaches to using biology to solve challenges in energy and environmental security by expanding on existing efforts or establishing novel research directions.
  • Acquire internal/external funding for self and others through leading the development of moderate to large proposals.
  • Develop and implement project management plans, including scope, schedule, and budget, for moderate to large projects and/or major project tasks.
  • Lead technical decision-making and offer recommendations that influence research direction and the achievement of key programmatic objectives.
  • Lead the synthesis of scientific products, including (but not limited to) proposal development, publications, presentations, reports, intellectual property, technical reports, etc.
  • Participate in professional societies, special assignments, and/or external collaborations.
  • Develop and implement plans for new and significant program development opportunities.
  • Actively mentor and supervise project staff (early career scientists, research technologists, postdocs, graduate and undergraduate students) and help them pursue career enhancement opportunities.
  • Foster a mutually respectful and inclusive work environment that is free from discrimination and harassment.


What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:
  • Advanced knowledge in synthetic biology, biochemistry, biomanufacturing, molecular biology, bioenergy/biofuels, microbiomes, microbial ecology, plant sciences, and/or high throughput screening
  • Advanced knowledge and proven ability in integrating broad scientific/technical knowledge across biological disciplines and manage diverse teams, to develop and execute state-of-the-art R&D solutions for an extensive and diverse range of complex biological problems
  • Advanced knowledge and experience in leading the synthesis of proposals, publications, presentations, reports, technical reports, etc.
  • Experience in program development and implementation
  • Experience in leading the development of large, complex proposals and demonstration of successfully being awarded said proposals
  • Experience building and/or participating in multi-institution scientific collaborations
  • Knowledge of external funding agencies (DOE, DOD, DHS, Other government agencies, etc.) relevant to B Division
  • Ability to obtain a Q clearance, which typically requires U.S. Citizenship.

Education/Experience: Position requires a Master's degree in a Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Bioengineering, Plant Biology, Biology, Chemistry, or related STEM field from an accredited college or university and 12 years of relevant experience or an equivalent combination of education and experience directly related to the occupation. A Ph.D. is preferred.

Desired Qualifications:
  • Ph.D. degree in a Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Bioengineering, Plant Biology, Biology, Chemistry, or related technical discipline.
  • Demonstrated professional relationship(s) with relevant external funding agencies (DOE, DOD, DHS, Other government agencies, etc)
  • SCI or ability to obtain an SCI clearance
Work Location: The work location for this position is onsite and located in Los Alamos, NM. All work locations are at the discretion of management.

Position commitment:
Regular appointment employees are required to serve a period of continuous service in their current position in order to be eligible to apply for posted jobs throughout the Laboratory. If an employee has not served the time required, they may only apply for Laboratory jobs with the documented approval of their Division Leader. The position commitment for this position is 1.

Note to Applicants: For full consideration, applicants must submit a comprehensive cover letter that addresses the key requirements of the position.While the posted salary range for this position is broad, it is highly unusual for selected applicants to be hired at the top end of the range and more common for selected candidates to grown into the full salary band over time.

Where You Will Work

Located in beautiful northern New Mexico, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security. Our generous benefits package includes:
  • PPO or High Deductible medical insurance with the same large nationwide network
  • Dental and vision insurance
  • Free basic life and disability insurance
  • Paid maternity and parental leave
  • Award-winning 401(k) (6% matching plus 3.5% annually)
  • Learning opportunities and tuition assistance
  • Flexible schedules and time off (PTO)
  • Onsite gyms and wellness programs
  • Extensive relocation packages (outside a 50 mile radius)

Additional Details

Directive 206.2 - Employment with Triad requires a favorable decision by NNSA indicating employee is suitable under NNSA Supplemental Directive 206.2. Please note that this requirement applies only to citizens of the United States. Foreign nationals are subject to a similar requirement under DOE Order 142.3A.

Clearance: Q (Position will be cleared to this level). Selected applicants will be subject to a background investigation conducted by or on behalf of the Federal Government, and must meet eligibility requirements* for access to classified matter. This position requires a Q clearance. and obtaining such clearance requires US Citizenship except in extremely rare circumstances. Dependent upon the position, additional authorization to access classified information may be required, which may or may not be available to dual citizens. Receipt of a Q clearance and additional access authorization ultimately is a decision of the Federal Government and not of Triad.

*Eligibility requirements: To obtain a clearance, an individual must be at least 18 years of age; U.S. citizenship is required except in very limited circumstances. See DOE Order 472.2 for additional information.

New-Employment Drug Test:
The Laboratory requires successful applicants to complete a new-employment drug test and maintains a substance abuse policy that includes random drug testing. Although New Mexico and other states have legalized the use of marijuana, use and possession of marijuana remain illegal under federal law. A positive drug test for marijuana will result in termination of employment, even if the use was pre-offer.

Regular position:
Term status Laboratory employees applying for regular-status positions are converted to regular status.

Internal Applicants: Regular appointment employees who have served the required period of continuous service in their current position are eligible to apply for posted jobs throughout the Laboratory. If an employee has not served the required period of continuous service, they may only apply for Laboratory jobs with the documented approval of their Division Leader. Please refer to Policy Policy P701 for applicant eligibility requirements.

Equal Opportunity: Los Alamos National Laboratory is an equal opportunity employer and supports a diverse and inclusive workforce. All employment practices are based on qualification and merit, without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or preference, marital status or spousal affiliation, physical or mental disability, medical conditions, pregnancy, status as a protected veteran, genetic information, or citizenship within the limits imposed by federal laws and regulations. The Laboratory is also committed to making our workplace accessible to individuals with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodations, upon request, for individuals to participate in the application and hiring process. To request such an accommodation, please send an email to applyhelp@lanl.gov or call 1-505-664-6947 option 2.