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Associate Director for External Relations

Army Research Office
Durham, North Carolina
This position is at the GS-15 Level
Date posted
Sep 7, 2023

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The U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command, Army Research Laboratory, Army Research Office (ARO) seeks an experienced academic leader with broad scientific research expertise and strong record of developing strategic relationships with academic, private sector organizations, not-for-profit agencies; and national academic associations (e.g., American Association of Universities, Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, American Association of Colleges and Universities) a to serve as Associate Director for External Relations.

Extramural research collaborations are central to ARO’s mission, and the Associate Director for External Relations (ADER) serves as the primary advocate and lead for strategically building relationships for Army Research Office (ARO) with current and potential collaborators at universities, colleges, and public and private sector organizations to support joint interests in advancing scientific research.  Reporting for the ARO Principal Deputy for Cross-Competency Program Integration, the ADER is responsible for (1) articulating to these audiences the opportunities to collaborate with the Army to advance Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) research; (2) building enduring relationships with research leaders in these groups to enable the Army to identify opportunities to invest in research that meets Army needs and gaps; (3) facilitating mutual understanding of the opportunities and challenges for collaboration across academic, Army, and public and private sector stakeholders; and (4) identifying and developing novel mechanisms to broadly engage the diverse types of colleges and universities, and public and private sector organizations and agencies, and  in Army research.  In meeting these responsibilities, the ADER will interface with academic research leaders, public and private sector leaders, as well as Army leaders to communicate strategies, plans, assessments, and engagements to maximize the effectiveness and impact of ARO’s extramural scientific investments.  The incumbent will also interface with ARO scientific program managers, ARO managers overseeing outreach and small business programs, and Army scientists to assist ARO in its efforts to bolster the scientific ecosystem through collaborative initiatives.  The ADER will also convene an advisory council of academic research leaders to meet regularly with the Director and leadership of ARO to provide recommendations and guidance that will inform the Army’s investments in basic research and the processes it uses to optimize the results of those investments.


Technical Expertise – Demonstrated broad multidisciplinary scientific expertise; ability to plan, organize, and manage initiatives to build robust relationships with external collaborators; utilized administrative knowledge of academic operations to facilitate mutually beneficial partnerships; exercised knowledge of research and development principles, management practices, and processes to oversee R&D activities.

Outreach Experience - Background fostering cooperation between own organization and other research organizations within government, industry, or academia to improve the quality and direction of research activities; ability to plan, organize, and manage initiatives to build robust relationships with external collaborators; knowledge of and experience working with underserved groups and organizations (e.g., HBCUs/MSIs) to make strides in removing the barriers of equal opportunity in research partnerships; knowledge of available programs to enhance collaborations with federal agencies; ability to conceptualize, develop, and execute initiatives and events that capitalize on the national academic talent base; demonstrated track record of developing cooperation between across research organizations within government, industry, and academia to improve the quality and direction of research activities.

Leadership – Experience identifying challenges, assessing risk, and developing approaches to solve problems; executing those approaches and demonstrating progress solving the problem; demonstrated ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing; involvement in team efforts to address technical or organizational issues (e.g., technical working groups, academic initiative groups, strategic planning groups).


  • PhD (PhD in STEM discipline is preferred) 5+ years of relevant academic administration experience Must be able to obtain a security clearance at the Secret level (Possessing an active Secret clearance is preferred); US Citizenship is a requirement for a Secret clearance at this location


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