Research Associate



We are seeking a highly motivated and organized individual to support an exciting, long-term collaboration between JHU, the Maryland Department of Health (MDH), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This position is a critical management and coordination role with opportunities to network, contribute to a broad range of projects of public health importance, and manage a sizeable grant. The project is ambitious with tight timelines and inherent complexities of working with MDH, CDC, Maryland hospitals and laboratories, and other organizations. The ideal candidate will be self-directed and also collaborative and able to be proactive as well as flexible in finding the best approaches to achieve desired outcomes.

Organizational Background

The posting for this position will be based in the Global Disease Epidemiology and Control (GDEC) Program of the Dept. of International Health.

Background on the Maryland Active Bacterial Core surveillance Program

Maryland Active Bacterial Core surveillance (ABCs) is a component of CDC’s Emerging Infection Program (EIP). The EIP was established in 1995 in response to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) 1994 strategy, Addressing Emerging Infectious Disease Threats: A Prevention Strategy for the United States. The predecessor of the Maryland ABCs site was established at JHU in late 1991.

EIP is a network of 10 state health departments (California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon and Tennessee) and their collaboration with academic institutions, federal agencies, public health and clinical laboratories, infection preventionists, and healthcare providers. The EIP population is roughly representative of the U.S. population on the basis of demographic characteristics such as age, gender, race, and urban residence, as well as health indicators such as population density and percent at or below the poverty level.

The EIP network is a national resource for surveillance, prevention, and the control of emerging infectious diseases. go beyond routine functions of health departments by:

1. Addressing important issues in infectious diseases and selecting projects the EIP network is particularly suited to investigate

2. Maintaining sufficient flexibility for emergency response and addressing new problems as they arise

3. Developing and evaluating public health interventions and transferring lessons learned to public health agencies

4. Incorporating training as a key function of EIP activities

5. Giving high priority to projects that lead directly to the prevention of disease.

The ABCs component of the EIP is an active laboratory- and population-based public health surveillance system for invasive bacterial pathogens of public health importance. In Maryland, ABCs is based at JHU; most other Maryland EIP activities are based at MDH.

ABCs provides an infrastructure for further public health research, which may include special studies to identify disease risk factors, evaluate vaccine efficacy, and monitor the effectiveness of prevention policies. Maryland ABCs also participates in several projects of the Healthcare-Associated Infections – Community Interface (HAIC) component of the EIP and recently has become involved in COVID-19-related projects.

Specific Duties & Responsibilities

The successful candidate will be responsible for oversight and coordination of multiple ABCs research and program evaluation projects in accordance with research contracts and projected timelines. This position is the primary liaison between the sponsor (CDC) and study partners at MDH, and participating healthcare facilities and laboratories throughout Maryland. The position is supervised by the GDEC program director with ABCs supervision provided by the scientific principal investigator: Lee H. Harrison, MD, Adjunct Professor at JHSPH and Professor at University of Pittsburgh

The person in this position is expected to work independently, lead the ABCs team, have final accountability for project implementation and the results, and delegate responsibilities appropriately. They should also be able to make project level decisions based on a combination of professional judgment, experience and consultation with Principal Investigator(s), other JHU personnel, sponsor, and regulatory authorities. They will supervise and manage multiple functions involving multiple sites and protocols and will be responsible for hiring, monitoring, disciplining, and terminating personnel for whom they have direct supervisory responsibilities.

Specific duties include but are not restricted to:

1. Responsible for overall planning, implementation and evaluation of research program in the following areas: protocol feasibility, site selection, staff selection, quality management, protocol development, institutional review board submissions, and protocol data collection.

2. Create, nurture, and share a vision responsive to projects that will enable the project team to maximize their potential to meet: ethical and GCP guidelines; the EIP/ABCs scientific agenda; mission of the organization and department.

3. Develop and monitor policies, procedures and team position descriptions that define and distribute responsibility, accountability, and recognition for performance directed to meeting the ethical and GCP guidelines, scientific agendas, and mission which includes development, benchmarking, and revision of standard operating procedures.

4. Identify allocation of resources (human, timelines, and facilities).

5. Supervise all project personnel including Research Nurse Program Coordinators, Research Nurses, Research Assistants, Research Data Coordinator, Data Assistants, Surveillance Officers, students and other trainees.

6. Provide mentoring and training for new staff in all ABCs activities.

7. Assist in budget planning and justification.

8. Assist in future planning and preparation of project renewal submissions.

9. Prepare IRB submissions and maintain all aspects of the program in IRB compliance, including the JHU, MDH, and CDC IRBs.

10. Communicate and coordinate research activities involving multiple sites.

11. Perform administrative functions that include serving on committees and working groups, including participation on conference calls with CDC and MDH, coordination with other ABCs sites, and traveling to both organizations for meetings.

12. Maintain awareness of overall development of research in accordance with sponsor expectations.

13. Participate in marketing, education, and outreach activities regarding protocol activities.

14. Identify and establish new community or organization relationships to facilitate scientific agendas and research goals.

15. Identify training needs and provide ongoing training to new and existing staff to meet project needs and sponsor expectations.

16. Develop, direct and implement quality management plan activities.

17. Review monitoring/audit reports to identify deficiencies and develop a plan to correct deficiencies.

18. Work closely with Dr. Harrison and other study leadership at MDH, CDC, and other EIP/ABCs sites.

19. Communicate progress of project to sponsor and other pertinent collaborators.

20. Interpret raw data, assist with data analysis and final reports

21. Develop grant submissions, reports, and written communications with sponsor.

22. Represent project at local and/or national multi-site meetings, conference calls and committees.

23. Flex job schedule to meet the project needs and assists team members in doing the same.

  • Masters Degree in Nursing, Public Health, or Health Sciences highly preferred
  • Experience with IRB submissions highly preferred
  • Interest and experience in public health or a related field highly preferred
  • Must have at least one year of experience working in a professional setting and supporting technical program activities; 2+ years are highly preferred


Special knowledge, skills, and abilities:

1. Should have an interest in and, ideally some experience, working with teams spanning multiple institutions and collaborators

2. Should have an interest in public health and public health research

3. Exceptional verbal, interpersonal, and written communication skills in English; high comfort level for writing and presenting data and information in a compelling way to different audiences.

4. Ability to work independently as well as with all levels of management and staff.

5. Reliable and trustworthy.

6. Ability to communicate with a wide range of stakeholders from diverse backgrounds.

7. Ability to handle multiple tasks requiring a high degree of attention to detail.

8. Diplomatic, with the ability to exercise proper discretion and judgment.

9. Ability to balance appropriately between independent action and referring issues to supervisors.

10. Advanced computer skills including Microsoft Word, Excel, Access, Outlook, Internet, etc.

11. Study form development and evaluation tool development skills are preferred

To Apply

Please send a CV and cover letter to Lee H. Harrison, MD at lharriso@edc.pitt.edu.

The successful candidate(s) for this position will be subject to a pre-employment background check. If you are interested in applying for employment with The Johns Hopkins University and require special assistance or accommodation during any part of the pre-employment process, please contact the HR Business Services Office at jhurecruitment@jhu.edu. For TTY users, call via Maryland Relay or dial 711.

The Johns Hopkins University is committed to equal opportunity for its faculty, staff, and students. To that end, the university does not discriminate on the basis of sex, gender, marital status, pregnancy, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, veteran status or other legally protected characteristic. The university is committed to providing qualified individuals access to all academic and employment programs, benefits and activities on the basis of demonstrated ability, performance and merit without regard to personal factors that are irrelevant to the program involved.

The successful candidate(s) for this position will be subject to a pre-employment background check.

If you are interested in applying for employment with The Johns Hopkins University and require special assistance or accommodation during any part of the pre-employment process, please contact the HR Business Services Office at jhurecruitment@jhu.edu. For TTY users, call via Maryland Relay or dial 711.

The following additional provisions may apply depending on which campus you will work. Your recruiter will advise accordingly.

During the Influenza ("the flu") season, as a condition of employment, The Johns Hopkins Institutions require all employees who provide ongoing services to patients or work in patient care or clinical care areas to have an annual influenza vaccination or possess an approved medical or religious exception. Failure to meet this requirement may result in termination of employment.

The pre-employment physical for positions in clinical areas, laboratories, working with research subjects, or involving community contact requires documentation of immune status against Rubella (German measles), Rubeola (Measles), Mumps, Varicella (chickenpox), Hepatitis B and documentation of having received the Tdap (Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis) vaccination. This may include documentation of having two (2) MMR vaccines; two (2) Varicella vaccines; or antibody status to these diseases from laboratory testing. Blood tests for immunities to these diseases are ordinarily included in the pre-employment physical exam except for those employees who provide results of blood tests or immunization documentation from their own health care providers. Any vaccinations required for these diseases will be given at no cost in our Occupational Health office.

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