Deputy Director Newborn Health Discovery & Development
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Location: Seattle, Washington
Type: Full Time
Required Education: High School
Internal Number: 95264301
Our Global Health Program (GHP) harnesses advances in science and technology to save lives in countries. We focus on the health problems that have an impact in developing countries but get too little attention and funding. Where proven tools exist, we support sustainable ways to improve their delivery. Where they do not, we invest in research and development of interventions, such as vaccines, drugs, and diagnostics. Our work focuses on strategies to fight and prevent HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, neglected tropical diseases, enteric and diarrheal diseases, and pneumonia. These programs strategy teams are supported by functional teams that focus on Discovery and Translational Sciences, Vaccine Development, and Integrated Development.
The Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Discovery & Tools (MNCH D&T) team leads upstream research and product development to improve the lives of mothers and infants in low-resource settings. Our approach targets underlying biological vulnerability and aims to intervene as early as possible in the life course. We fund development on a core set of products that range in type (including drugs, foods, microbes, algorithms and devices), technical risk (from novel concepts to product substitutions) and development phase (from early discovery to late-stage efficacy testing). These products target pregnancy risk, complications of prematurity including Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS), neonatal encephalopathy, neonatal sepsis, undernutrition, and infant neurodevelopment. In addition to product development-focused initiatives, we invest in two cross-cutting areas of epidemiology and upstream discovery. Our team is multidisciplinary and includes physician scientists with backgrounds in obstetrics and pediatrics, perinatal epidemiologists, and experts in neurodevelopment, nutrition research, engineering, global health, and strategy development. We emphasize in-country partnership to integrate the local context into research and development.
As Deputy Director, you will lead strategy development and execution for our R&D work on newborn health extending from discovery through to product development. On the Discovery side this will include leading high-risk, upstream technology and intervention assessment with an aim to push on novel approaches that can advance newborn health in low- and middle-income country settings. On the Development side, this will include overseeing development programs focused on neuroprotection for birth asphyxia, surfactant for RDS and approaches to prevention of neonatal sepsis.
In this role, you will apply expertise in Neonatology and experience in cutting-edge, innovative investigational approaches to guide the management of portfolios of foundation investments (grants and contracts). The role will engage collaboratively as a technical expert with downstream teams focused on delivery and work with external partners to drive progress. As part of this effort, you will represent the foundation with external stakeholders including at scientific conferences and workshops. This role will include managing relationships with grantees, biotechnology companies, contractors, and key partners to achieve impact as well as providing briefings and science updates to foundation leadership.
Develop, modify and implement Newborn Health Discovery and Development strategy under the leadership of the Director. Work with the team and with foundation leadership to progress the portfolio of investments.
Source and assess high-impact innovations across multiple sectors relevant to newborn health
Progress product portfolio focused on improving newborn health and neurodevelopment through to demonstration of efficacy and hand-off to partner teams
Serve as a foundation global spokesperson on stakeholder engagement priorities and related issues internally to foundation Co-chairs and leadership and externally to industry, academia, and other stakeholders.
Advise, mentor, and support colleagues within the foundation and their grantees in the design, enhancement, and execution of project, initiatives and engagements. Manage partnerships and grantee relationships to achieve impact, for example, by conducting site visits, convening meetings of key stakeholders, monitoring and evaluating components of grants.
This role will manage people and may be responsible for hiring the talent needed to achieve our goals, ensuring successful employee onboarding, communicating performance expectations, creating goal alignment, integrating project and change management, giving and seeking feedback, providing coaching, measuring progress and holding people accountable, supporting employee development, and recognizing achievement and lessons learned.
Identify areas for advancing the newborn health portfolio to achieve overall program goals.
Engage internal and external expertise to drive portfolio objectives. Responsible for high-quality interactions and clear and consistent communications with grantees and partners.
Use technical expertise to advise on newborn and discovery approaches across the portfolio and evaluate new grantees.
Review letters of inquiry 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.
Provide content expertise and participate on the team to ensure seamless integration of upstream work into the overarching MNCH D&T strategy. Collaborate with partners across the foundation, offering input and review on investments
Conduct data analyses, research and synthesis in support of investment portfolio and decision-making. Provide written analysis of key topics for foundation leadership.
Leadership and Culture
We believe that energized people, working well together, fueled by great leadership in an inclusive environment in which they thrive, will do phenomenal things.
Core Knowledge and Skills
Consistent track record leading and influencing others in a constructive manner and building collaborative relationships across a multi-disciplinary, highly matrixed work environment.
Experience working on teams with diverse cultural and professional backgrounds.
Demonstrated excellence in scientific writing and data analysis, written and oral communication skills, and experience advocating and communicating with a broad and diverse audience. Strong quantitative analytic ability, able to effectively synthesize information to reach diverse audiences and build consensus.
Experience in a role requiring collaboration in a complex organization and working with external organizations.
Ability to drive development of novel therapies for MNCH from target identification through to phase 3 efficacy trials, with particular focus on treatment of prematurity-related neonatal complications, neuroprotection, and childhood growth.
Strong knowledge across relevant technical area/expertise.
Ability to draw on relevant professional networks to support team's goals
Experience as a technical resource to teams and leadership on impact, cost effectiveness and decision analyses.
Experience with leadership and demonstrated ability to deliver projects/programs, including risk mitigation and budget management in a fast-paced environment, with clear achievements and outcomes.
Passion for solving problems through innovation and demonstrated proven experience of the same. Results-driven and self-motivated with ability to encourage the pursuit of excellence.
Works with efficiency and diplomacy.
Education and Experience
Advanced degree (e.g. MD/PhD or MD) and minimum of 10 years of relevant newborn- and discovery-related scientific or product development experience.
Works effectively across traditional disciplinary areas and with senior leadership, subject matter experts, and clinicians in a highly collaborative and nonhierarchical manner.
Experience and evidence of innovation in the conception, design, review and management of strategies, initiatives, and scientific programs.
Experience with global health or specific disease areas noted is useful
**The foundation requires a COVID-19 vaccination for in-person business in the United States. Therefore, all U.S. employees are required to present proof of vaccination status upon hire unless they qualify for a medical or religious exemption.
As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is dedicated to the belief that all lives have equal value. We're committed to creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally. We also believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve-in race, gender, age, cultures and beliefs-and we support this diversity through all of our employment practices.
All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve the mission of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to: