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Director, Molecular Foundry

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Berkeley, California (US)
Salary Range: $226,104 - $469,284/year
Closing date
May 12, 2024

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Life Sciences, Molecular Biology
Position Type
Full Time
Job Type
Organization Type

Director, Molecular Foundry - 101340
Division: AE-Energy Sciences

Berkeley Lab is seeking a dynamic scientific leader to serve as the Director of the Molecular Foundry.

The Molecular Foundry ( is a national scientific user facility and independent division at Berkeley Lab, and one of five Nanoscale Science Research Centers sponsored by the Basic Energy Sciences Office of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science. The Director guides the dual mission of the Molecular Foundry, which is both a multidisciplinary research center at the forefront of nanoscale science and a knowledge-based user facility that provides its state-of-the-art expertise, methods, and instrumentation to nearly 1,000 users per year. The Foundry features collaborative research staff and world-leading capabilities in its seven integrated technical facilities: Imaging and Manipulation of Nanostructures; Nanofabrication; Theory of Nanostructured Materials; Inorganic Nanostructures; Biological Nanostructures; Organic and Macromolecular Synthesis; and the National Center for Electron Microscopy.

Position Summary:
Reporting to the Associate Laboratory Director for Energy Sciences, the Molecular Foundry Director is responsible for providing scientific vision and organizational leadership for both the user and internal research programs of the Molecular Foundry, and building a vibrant, diverse, and interactive research community at the Foundry. The Director is responsible for representing and strategically prioritizing investments and initiatives that promote the Foundry’s highly collaborative, multidisciplinary internal research portfolio, ensuring that it is responsive to the needs of the nanoscience user community. The Director establishes a culture of excellence and inclusion by recruiting and retaining outstanding employees – including scientists, engineers and technical staff in strategic areas of basic research who perform independent research and collaborate with users – and enthusiastically supports and promotes their careers. The Director is also responsible for maintaining a vibrant user program, including formulating strategies for user outreach, recruitment, and tracking and responding to the needs of the user community, as expressed by the User Executive Committee. The Director oversees a budget of approximately $50 million and a staff of over 100 employees. The Director receives scientific and strategic guidance from an external Scientific Advisory Board, as well as an internal committee of scientific Facility Directors and other senior leaders.

The Molecular Foundry Director is a member of the executive team for the Energy Sciences Area, a group of four Berkeley Lab Divisions that are primarily funded by the Basic Energy Sciences program of the DOE Office of Science, as well as a member of the Laboratory's management team responsible for guiding institutional priorities. In this role, the Director will build collaborative partnerships and programs within the Energy Sciences Area, with other Divisions across Berkeley Lab, and with external research institutions. Other important responsibilities include acting as a spokesperson for the Foundry in interactions with DOE and articulating the Foundry’s mission to visitors and the public at large. Equally important, the Director is responsible for advancing Berkeley Lab’s stewardship values of team science, innovation, trust, respect, and service, including championing and continually building upon a culture that is committed to the ideals of Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accountability.

While not a requirement given the scope of management responsibilities associated with this Director role, the successful candidate may choose to design and lead a robust individual research program that is synergistic with current expertise and capabilities at the Foundry and across Berkeley Lab.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Provide scientific and operational leadership for the Molecular Foundry, including creating a strategic vision and short- and long-term strategies for the Division in support of the Laboratory’s mission and supporting strategies.
  • Ensure the reliable and safe operation of the facility (including all equipment, capabilities, and experiments) for both users and staff, and pursue strategies to proactively mitigate risks.
  • Maintain and advance the Molecular Foundry’s world-class user program.
  • Lead by example, establishing an inclusive and respectful working environment and culture for Molecular Foundry staff and users.
  • Oversee the recruitment and career advancement of Foundry employees through active mentoring, and promote a culture of inclusion, equity, diversity and psychological safety.
  • Oversee the development of budgets and staffing plans.
  • Champion the Research & Development activities within the Division.
  • Serve as a member of the executive team of Berkeley Lab’s Energy Sciences Area; work collaboratively with the Associate Laboratory Director and peer Division Directors (Advanced Light Source, Chemical Sciences, Materials Sciences) to develop new research initiatives and other activities to advance the mission of the Area.
  • Build institution-wide partnerships and programs across other Berkeley Lab Scientific Areas and Divisions, and maintain and evolve productive partnerships with the Basic Energy Sciences program within the DOE Office of Science.
  • Engage senior Foundry management and key stakeholders to build consensus for major decisions affecting the Foundry user community and key stakeholders.
  • Serve as the Molecular Foundry’s primary point of contact to the DOE, scientific community, and public. Establish and maintain a productive management partnership with the Foundry’s primary sponsor, the Scientific User Facilities Division of Basic Energy Sciences within the DOE’s Office of Science.
  • Lead Molecular Foundry efforts to prepare for, conduct, and respond to DOE programmatic reviews, workshops, and funding opportunities.
  • Build partnerships with other nanocenters, DOE user facilities at Berkeley Lab, Berkeley Lab/UC Berkeley scientists, academic institutions, and industry.

Required Qualifications:

  • Ph.D. in chemistry, materials science, physics, bioscience or a field relevant to nanoscience (or equivalent experience), and an internationally recognized record of scientific accomplishments and current scientific leadership related to Foundry research.
  • Demonstrated record of effective management of scientific projects, programs, or facilities.
  • Demonstrated ability to create and implement a scientific vision across multiple domain areas.
  • Ability to provide effective management, administrative oversight, and creativity in decision making and problem solving; experience in human resources management.
  • Demonstrated ability to interact effectively with funding agencies and external stakeholders, and demonstrated ability to initiate substantial new research efforts and collaborations.
  • Skilled in building and leading collaboration among multidisciplinary teams, including scientists, engineers, and technical support staff.
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, including the ability to interact and collaborate effectively with diverse groups of scientists, engineers, technical and operations staff, and with external stakeholders from both scientific and lay backgrounds.
  • Demonstrated track record of advancing diversity, equity, inclusion and accountability, establishing a welcoming and inclusive working environment and culture, and supporting the career development of scientific and operations staff.
  • Ability to interact at the highest level of management, both internally and externally, in a constructive and collaborative manner.

Desired Qualifications:

  • At least 15 years of post-degree professional experience and regarded as a respected scientific expert and leader in a field closely related to nanoscience.
  • Experience working with DOE and familiarity with their programs and structure.
  • Experience relating to the management and operation of a user facility or large-scale multidisciplinary research center.

Application Guidelines:

  • For full consideration, please submit your CV and cover letter by May 24, 2024.
  • In the cover letter, please highlight: your interest and vision for the position; relevant organizational leadership experience (including size of organizations/teams managed); relevant research accomplishments; and personal contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion.


  • This is a full-time career appointment, exempt (monthly paid) from overtime pay.
  • This position is expected to pay $300,000 to $365,000, which fits within the full salary range of $226,104 to $469,284 for the Scientific Division Director job classification. It is not typical for an individual to be offered a salary at or near the top of the full range for a position. Salary for this position will be commensurate with the final candidate’s qualifications and experience (including skills, knowledge, relevant education, certifications), as well as aligned with the internal leadership peer group.
  • This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.
  • The Molecular Foundry Director is an at-will position that is appointed by and serves at the discretion of the Laboratory Director.
  • This position is subject to the financial disclosure requirements of the California Political Reform Act of 1974. The successful candidate for this position will be required to file financial interest statements upon assuming this position, annually while holding this position, and when leaving this position.
  • Work will be primarily performed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.

How To Apply
Apply directly online and follow the on-line instructions to complete the application process.

Learn About Us:
Berkeley Lab is a U.S. Department of Energy national laboratory managed by the University of California and designated a Federally Funded Research and Development Center. Located in the San Francisco Bay Area, we have a close relationship with UC Berkeley, as well as robust partnerships with other academic institutions and industries, including those in Silicon Valley. The Laboratory conducts world-class research that supports clean energy, a healthy planet, and solution-inspired discovery science. Berkeley Lab is defined by our deeply felt sense of stewardship (, which we describe as a commitment to taking care of the Laboratory's research, people, and resources that are entrusted to us. Our values of team science, innovation, service, trust, and respect knit us together as a community. We practice these values and prioritize our principles of inclusion, diversity, equity, and accountability (IDEA, to build highly effective teams that produce world-class science and technology and where all individuals, regardless of their backgrounds, disciplines, and experiences, can thrive.

Equal Opportunity and IDEA Information Links:
Know your rights, click here ( for the supplement: Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law and the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision ( under 41 CFR 60-1.4.

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