Director, Translational Oncology Lead

La Jolla, California
July 29 2021
Life Sciences, Oncology
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

Summarize the primary purpose & key accountabilities of the job.
  • As a member of the Translational Oncology group within the Global Products Development - Oncology organization, the successful candidate will function in a key scientific leadership position on clinical development teams to ensure that a current and experienced understanding of relevant human cancer biology, cancer therapeutics and clinical assay technologies is appropriately integrated into clinical development strategies.
  • The candidate will combine a deep understanding of cancer biology and human malignancies, as well as cancer immunology, with prior experience in clinical trial sample analyses to design, prioritize and successfully execute clinical translational studies that will inform key drug development decisions in the era of precision medicine.


Indicate the primary responsibilities critical to the job.
  • Design, conduct and coordinate clinical and translational research activities involved in the evaluation and development of anti-cancer drugs within the Pfizer Oncology portfolio, focusing on pharmacodynamic proof-of-mechanism/pharmacology, patient selection/stratification and clinical proof-of-concept, and underlying disease biology of relevance to combination therapy and drug sensitivity or resistance.
  • Identify, evaluate and prioritize candidate predictive biomarkers and develop clinical companion diagnostic tests that will appropriately transition from early to late phase clinical development.
  • Work directly with academic collaborators and key opinion leaders as well as a variety of external contract research organizations/vendors to execute and expand clinical translational research efforts.
  • Work collaboratively within highly matrixed, multi-functional G lobal Medicine T eams and across organizational boundaries to successfully achieve goals and deliverables. Collaboratively lead cross-functional, multidisciplinary correlative sciences teams to deliver clinical study biomarker analyses (see organizational relationships below).
  • Provide proactive scientific leadership to Global Medicine and Study Teams ensuring prioritization of science-driven drug development.


Candidate demonstrates a breadth of diverse leadership experiences and capabilities including: the ability to influence and collaborate with peers, develop and coach others, oversee and guide the work of other colleagues to achieve meaningful outcomes and create business impact.

Training and Education:
  • Minimum: Advanced degree (PhD, MD, MD/PhD, Pharm. D.) with focus on cancer biology and biomarkers.
  • Candidates should possess an advanced and current understanding of cancer biology, cancer genetics and cancer immunology.

Prior Experience:
  • Minimum: Approximately 10 years or more of industry experience, with at least 5 years of experience demonstrating excellence in designing, executing and interpreting studies of cancer biomarkers in clinical trials, including biomarker development, validation and clinical application; experienced understanding of clinical trial design, logistics and regulatory issues; familiarity with the development and regulatory approval of oncology companion diagnostics.
  • Demonstrated ability to think strategically and creatively while contributing to multiple projects and to work well in collaborative, multi-disciplinary team setting; effective verbal and written communication skills.

Technical Competencies
  • Clinical Project Expertise : demonstrated potential or ability to design, initiate and conduct clinical studies focusing on integrating and executing biomarker analyses that support clinical development objectives.
  • Scientific Excellence : demonstrated understanding of pre-clinical and clinical tumor biology, and the ability to apply that knowledge to drug development; demonstrated understanding of the complexities and recent developments in the relevant therapeutic/technical area, and the ability to apply such knowledge to drug development.
  • Presentation and Analytical Skills : demonstrates ability to present clinical data, study plans and tactics clearly and accurately to relevant audiences to inform and direct decisions.

Behavioral Competencies
  • Networking and Alliance Building : Able to work across many interfaces and line functions: clinical, regulatory; project management; development operations (biometrics, monitoring resource, study reporting); statistics; data management; programming; marketing / commercial.
  • Developing Others : Will be responsible for helping to support and mentor as appropriate less experienced translational clinicians, and to foster continued learning within the therapeutic areas, including collection and application of lessons learned.
  • I nfluencing : Must be able to lead multi-disciplinary groups; ability to manage and motivate investigators and contract research organizations.
  • Innovation: Constantly challenge existing paradigms in clinical research and encourage breakthrough designs; work with clinical development operations on study design, data capture and retrieval, reporting.
  • Courage with decisiveness to Act : Bias towards action to achieving goals.
  • Team Building : Shares wins and success; fosters open dialogue; lets people finish and be responsible for their work; defines success in terms of the whole team; creates strong morale and spirit in his/her team; creates a feeling of belonging to the team; leads by example in fostering the values of excellence, courage, equity and joy.
  • Conflict Management : Good at focused listening; can find common ground and get cooperation with minimum noise.


Reports to:
  • Head of Translational Oncology within GPD Oncology

Liaises with:
  • Global Medicine Team functional line representatives, including colleagues representing Clinical, Statistics, Clinical Pharmacology, Regulatory, Clinical Programming, Data Management, Diagnostics, Development Operations, Medical Affairs, Commercial and Program Management, with accountability to the Global Medicine Team Lead; scientists within the Oncology Research and Development organization, including biomarker laboratory scientists, biology leads and computational biologists.

Other Job Details:
  • Eligible for Employee Referral Bonus: YES
  • Eligible for Relocation: YES

Sunshine Act

Pfizer reports payments and other transfers of value to health care providers as required by federal and state transparency laws and implementing regulations. These laws and regulations require Pfizer to provide government agencies with information such as a health care provider's name, address and the type of payments or other value received, generally for public disclosure. Subject to further legal review and statutory or regulatory clarification, which Pfizer intends to pursue, reimbursement of recruiting expenses for licensed physicians may constitute a reportable transfer of value under the federal transparency law commonly known as the Sunshine Act. Therefore, if you are a licensed physician who incurs recruiting expenses as a result of interviewing with Pfizer that we pay or reimburse, your name, address and the amount of payments made currently will be reported to the government. If you have questions regarding this matter, please do not hesitate to contact your Talent Acquisition representative.

EEO & Employment Eligibility

Pfizer is committed to equal opportunity in the terms and conditions of employment for all employees and job applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, gender identity or gender expression, national origin, disability or veteran status. Pfizer also complies with all applicable national, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act and IRCA. Pfizer is an E-Verify employer.



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