Senior Program Officer, Global Biological Policy and Programs (NTI | bio)

The Nuclear Threat Initiative is seeking a Senior Program Officer to join the NTI | bio team.

NTI is a non-profit whose mission is to transform global security by driving systemic solutions to nuclear and biological threats imperiling humanity.

The NTI | bio team’s mission is to reduce biological risk and enhance global biosecurity. We are working toward this goal by: promoting concrete actions to reduce risks posed by advances in biotechnology; identifying gaps in the capacity of individual countries to mitigate high-consequence biological events and motivating governments and other stakeholders to fill them; developing novel approaches for curbing potential catastrophic outcomes from a high-consequence biological event; and working to strengthen national biosecurity capacity in countries around the world.

This position is based in our DC office.  Teleworking up to 2 days per week may be permitted, as managed and approved by the program lead.

Note:  Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, NTI employees currently remain on a full-time telework status.  We anticipate a return to the DC office later this fall.  When health conditions improve and a date has been determined, we will give employees at least one month’s advance notice.

The Senior Program Officer reports to the NTI Vice President for Global Biological Policy for Global Biological Policy and Programs.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

This position provides leadership on international projects to reduce biological risks associated with advances in technology.

Leadership, Oversight, and Management:

  • Collaborate, develop, and lead implementation projects within the NTI | bio program.
  • Participate in strategic planning for NTI’s mission to reduce biological catastrophes, advance international biosecurity and biosafety, and improve global health security. This includes:
    • Identifying opportunities for engagement with senior officials, the scientific community, industry, and the public
    • Developing and recommending new areas of work
    • Establishing project priorities and goals
    • Overseeing budgets associated with the work
    • Collaborating with NTI leadership and staff across the organization
    • Drafting memos on relevant topics and activities for NTI leadership to ensure that engagements reflect the program’s goals and objectives.
  • Represent NTI both domestically and internationally to support and promote program goals.  Develop and manage relationships and partnerships with other organizations and policy makers and experts globally and in the United States.  Liaise and develop relationships and collaboration to advance NTI | bio objectives with key stakeholders in governments, industry, academia, and non-government organizations.
  • Assist with preparation and management of grant proposals and reports.  Identify opportunities and develop grant proposals for funding of NTI | bio projects, and support the development, negotiation, and execution of NTI grants and contracts for NTI | bio.
  • Coordinate external procurement of NTI | bio assistance to NTI, including: the identification, recruitment, administration, and oversight of consultants; and review and distribution of consultant products.

Substantive Expertise and Responsibility:

  • Conduct substantive research and policy analysis.
  • Maintain high level of expertise on biosecurity and health security topics and contribute to NTI’s activities across program areas. Develop written analysis and content for reports, memos, blogs, the NTI website, and social media.  Coordinate, and prepare materials for Congressional outreach activities.
  • Represent NTI as a subject matter expert on biological security and global health security topics at meetings and various international forums.  Serve as an NTI | bio expert on biotechnology developments and related security and safety matters.
  • Perform other duties and support projects as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Masters, PhD, JD or equivalent experience in an area relevant to countering biological threats, curbing global catastrophic biological risks, biotechnology research/development, or global health/global health security, including, but not limited to, biology/molecular biology, biotechnology/engineering, public health, international affairs, international legal affairs, philosophy or another relevant field.
  • 7-10 years of managerial or leadership experience, including in biology/biotechnology, international security, global health, international affairs, philosophy, with majority of that time focused on global health security, countering weapons of mass destruction, curbing global catastrophic biological risk, or bioscience/biosecurity/biodefense policy and/or implementation.
  • Proven ability to interact effectively with senior officials from the international and U.S. public, private, and academic sectors.
  • Ability to travel internationally.  The position will require regular domestic and international travel. (Note:  NTI is currently operating under a limited essential travel only policy due to the COVID-19 pandemic.)
  • Recognized subject matter expertise in biosecurity, global health/global health security, and biotechnology, as well as with national and international affairs policies and programs.
  • Demonstrated success in leading programs and managing projects, staff, and budgets.
  • Outstanding interpersonal, organizational, collaborative, leadership, and management skills.
  • Outstanding analytic, research, writing, and communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to juggle multiple projects with competing deadlines.
  • Government, academic, or private sector experience implementing or overseeing policies and/or programs related to biosecurity, global health security, and biotechnology security and safety-related matters.Experience with congressional outreach a plus.

The above is intended to describe the general content of and requirements for the performance of this job. It is not to be construed as an exhaustive statement of essential functions, responsibilities or requirements.

COVID-19 vaccination policy:

In accordance with NTI’s duty to provide and maintain a workplace that is free of known hazards, we have adopted a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy.

All employees, including interns working in our D.C. office, will be required to be fully vaccinated, unless a reasonable accommodation for medical reasons or sincerely held religious beliefs is requested and approved.

To apply

Send a resume and a cover letter to [email protected] Subject line must read: “NTI BIO SPO”. Position will remain open until filled. Early application encouraged.


NTI is proud to be an equal opportunity employer and encourages people of all background and identities to apply. All applicants will be considered without attention to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, personal appearance, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, familial status, family responsibilities, political affiliation, genetic information, disability, or any other quality or circumstance protected by Federal or D.C. law.


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