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ID#:3035BR    Posted: 4 Jun 2012
Senior Program Officer - HIV Vaccine Initiative - Clinical Development
Type of Position: Full-time   
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The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Guided by the belief that every life has equal value, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. In developing countries, it focuses on improving people's health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty. In the United States, it seeks to ensure that all people-especially those with the fewest resources-have access to the opportunities they need to succeed in school and life. Based in Seattle, the foundation is led by CEO Jeff Raikes and co-chair William H. Gates Sr., under the direction of Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett.
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Our Global Health Program (GHP) harnesses advances in science and technology to save lives in poor countries. We focus on the health problems that have a major 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 don't, we invest in research and development of new interventions, such as vaccines, drugs, and diagnostics. Our work in infectious diseases focuses on strategies to fight and prevent HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, neglected and other infectious diseases, enteric and diarrheal diseases and pneumonia. These strategies are supported by functional teams that focus on Discovery and Translational Sciences, Vaccine Development, and Integrated Development.


This Senior Program Officer (SPO) position supports the HIV vaccine initiative, a high priority and complex portfolio of activities within the foundation's HIV strategy. The vaccine initiative encompasses investments in discovery research, early clinical and translational research, and more advanced clinical development, all with an emphasis on developing vaccine products. Within this initiative, a deputy director and team of program officers, together with a program coordinator and other business team members, manage a comprehensive portfolio of grants, contracts, and program-related investments in support of HIV vaccine discovery and development. The HIV Vaccines initiative is implemented in significant part through the foundation-funded Collaboration for HIV Vaccine Discovery (

The HIV vaccine initiative is seeking a Senior Program Officer (SPO) to supplement our current discovery and development expertise, to inform vaccine clinical development strategies and provide oversight of selected translational vaccine development programs. The SPO will utilize their expertise, and leverage capability from individuals and teams across the foundation, to develop and manage a portfolio of grants focused on the development of HIV vaccine products.

Major responsibilities

  • Develop and manage a variety of HIV vaccine translational and clinical development grants, including use of data to inform program progress and, in coordination with the Vaccine Development team, analytic approaches for product development
  • Collaborate and coordinate with other foundation teams including HIV ARV-based Prevention, Discovery, Vaccine Development, Integrated Delivery, Policy and Advocacy, and newly established in-country Africa teams
  • Collaborate and coordinate with other funders, clinical trials groups, Product Development Partners, biotech and pharmaceutical companies to enable clinical product development and help ensure portfolio is complementary and synergistic with other funded efforts
  • Help prepare communications to educate and inform foundation leadership
  • Contribute to overall HIV and HIV vaccine strategy development, reviews, and execution as part of HIV team


  • MD, PhD or equivalent advanced degree in Immunology, Virology, Molecular Biology, or related discipline.
  • Minimum 15 years professional experience relevant to HIV vaccine, prevention or treatment research and development, preferred.
  • Proven ability to oversee clinical and product development activities
  • Expertise in clinical trial design, clinical trial execution and regulatory issues highly valued
  • Knowledge of development program measurement and evaluation tools highly valued
  • Attention to detail and capacity to perform and to meet deadlines under pressure
  • Experience writing and/or reviewing budgets
  • Ability to work collaboratively within multi-disciplinary team structure
  • Ability to build and manage productive relationships with internal teams and external partners and organizations.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and aptitude for relationship development
  • Commitment to foundation's core values, mission and programs
  • Excellent problem solving skills
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to travel up to 30% domestically and internationally

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 comprehensive background check.