Senior Program Officer, Early Innovative Product Development, Pneumonia

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Location
    Seattle, Washington
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career / Advanced
  • Posted
    Feb 11

Position description

The Senior Program Officer will lead, execute and contribute to strategy and investments that support translational research and preclinical development of innovative vaccine candidates. You will bring translational-research subject-matter expertise and pre-clinical research experience for new influenza vaccine candidates as well as for other pathogens in the Pneumonia portfolio. You will have responsibility for translational-research activities and input to support creative vaccine strategies, from research to proof of concept. This role will manage a portfolio of complex grants and lead internal and external partnerships, which requires relevant expertise, the willingness and ability to dive into the details and see the "big picture", and management skills


  • Design, plan, and lead management of a portfolio of grants to conduct translational research of influenza and other vaccines candidates.
  • Collaborate with initiatives leads and PST leadership on technical and operational aspects of product development.
  • Identify, select and cultivate partners to build coalitions and collaborations to achieve programmatic objectives.
  • Review submitted concept notes and grant proposals; provide clear, concise and insightful written analyses and recommendations for funding, including drafting and editing proposal summaries and progress reports for existing grants for review by foundation leadership.
  • Consult with grantees to achieve desired impact of grants; conduct site visits, provide technical mentorship, convene meetings, and apply and evaluate milestone-based performance objectives.
  • Prepare and write briefs and synthesize existing literature. Initiate and provide written analysis and recommendations about key topics of relevance to the Pneumonia team.
  • This role is responsible for high quality interactions and clear and consistent communications internally and externally, including grantees and all levels of partners and stakeholders in the field.


  • PhD in life sciences with expertise in vaccinology and/or immunology required. Minimum of 7+ years of experience in successfully leading creative late discovery and translational-research projects for vaccines.
  • MPH or public health experience, particularly in low and middle-income countries, is desirable.
  • Experience with writing, execution and/or management of performance-based grants, contracts or cooperative agreements preferred.
  • Strong knowledge of process development, preclinical studies, and regulatory requirements highly preferred.
  • Excellence in scientific writing and data analysis, written and oral communication skills, and experience advocating and communicating with a broad and diverse audience.
  • Proven effectiveness as a teammate and collaborator in complex, multicultural and matrixed organizations and partnerships.
  • Field experience, scientific collaborations and network in target geographies (Sub-Saharan Africa, Southeast Asia) preferred.
  • Experience working with multiple partners, including academic, research, industry, government, other donors, grantees to build a common vision and visualize simple and effective but implementable solutions to complex problems.
  • Comfortable in a wide range of cultural, geographic and operational situations, demonstrating culturally sensitive behavior with a diverse range of people.
  • Effective as a collaborator in complex internal and external organizations.
  • Extensive project contribution and management experience.
  • Reports to Director, Pneumonia Strategy Team.

Application instructions

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