Opportunity:      Vice President of the National Microbiology Laboratory, Public Health Agency of Canada and Professor, University of Manitoba

Organizations:  Public Health Agency of Canada and University of Manitoba

Location:             Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Public Health Agency of Canada and the University of Manitoba

The Public Health Agency of Canada and the University of Manitoba have established a collaboration to recruit a scientific leader in infectious diseases who will be the head of Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory. This individual will hold a tenured-track faculty position in the Department of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Disease at the University of Manitoba and will be assigned to the full-time position of Vice President, National Microbiology Laboratory.

A renewable Interchange Canada agreement will be put in place to effect this arrangement following the appointment of the successful candidate by the University.

This collaboration achieves the integration of the Vice President within the academic community and, at the same time, builds on the existing shared research and training environments that characterize the relationship between the University and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

The Opportunity

Public Health Agency of Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory

The Vice President of the National Microbiology Laboratory is the Government of Canada’s leader in infectious disease science and its applications to public health solutions. Responsible for laboratory facilities in multiple locations and for a workforce of over 600 scientists, the Vice President has an essential role in Canada’s pandemic response capabilities, as part of the Laboratory’s mandate to detect and respond to emerging infectious disease threats.

The National Microbiology Laboratory (NML) is a recognized leader in laboratory-based infectious disease science, both nationally and internationally, and its Science Centre for Human and Animal Health is home to the country’s only containment level 4 microbiology laboratory. This capability is an essential asset for advancing research into new and emerging infectious disease threats. NML discoveries have had world-renowned impacts in areas including Ebola and influenza. The NML’s science programs (bacterial, enteric, viral, and zoonotic pathogens; pandemic preparedness and response) are implemented by a team of over 600 scientists and support staff located Winnipeg, Manitoba (main site), Ste. Hyacinthe, Quebec and Guelph, Ontario. These programs are highly connected to academic centers, with academic cross-appointments and student exchanges facilitating an exemplary scientific environment at the NML. A leading-edge bioinformatics program supports scientific analyses using state-of-the-art technologies. NML scientists have significant scientific output, generating over 250 publications annually and contributing leading edge science to the microbiology and infectious disease fields.

NML scientists develop diagnostic assays that are deployed to support clinical and public health objectives, provide highly specialized diagnostic, consultative and quality assurance programs in a range of areas including HIV (National HIV and Retrovirology Laboratory), foodborne illnesses, and emerging public health concerns, including antimicrobial resistance and tick-borne diseases.

The NML is the coordination hub for the Canadian Public Health Laboratory Network, which connects provincial public health laboratories across the country in a unified approach to laboratory services and infectious disease science. International collaborations through the Global Health Security Initiative and other multilateral and bilateral fora demonstrate the NML’s contributions to global public health.

The NML’s Emergency Management Program supports rapid identification and response to infectious disease and biological threats. Its mobile capabilities are deployed in Canada and internationally to support outbreak responses.

The University of Manitoba and its Department of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases

The University of Manitoba, founded more than 140 years ago, is located in Winnipeg, Canada and is the region’s largest research-intensive university. The University community is comprised of close to 30,000 students, 9,000 faculty and staff, and over 140,000 alumni. The position for which we are recruiting aligns with the University’s strategic research plan that identifies Population and Global Health; Immunity, Inflammation and Infectious Disease as two of its defined “Signature Areas” of demonstrated research excellence.

The Department of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (MMID), established in 1884, is dedicated to research and training in the area of human infectious diseases. The Department combines strong basic science research and graduate student training with excellence in clinical microbiology and infectious disease care. It advances post-graduate medical microbiology and clinical microbiology training along with nationally unique public health infectious disease research and training. The Department’s identified areas of strength are HIV, viral pathogenesis, host/pathogen interactions and antimicrobial resistance, and it has unique international research cohorts.

MMID is seeking a tenured associate or full professor in Public Health Infectious Diseases.  The successful candidate should have demonstrated research excellence and their research interests should complement MMID’s areas of research strengths.

MMID is the regional academic home for biomedical, clinical and public health research and training in infectious diseases. The research interests of the successful candidate will be multidisciplinary, may have a high-quality training component, and be highly collaborative with members of the department, the University and with regional partners such as the NML, local hospitals, and the provincial laboratory.

Consistent with the purpose of this recruitment, which will result in an immediate transfer of the successful candidate to the position of Vice President of the Public Health Agency of Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory, a strong relationship with MMID will continue and will build on the already extensive collaborations in research, training, and other academic scientific pursuits   (https://umanitoba.ca/faculties/health_sciences/medicine/units/medical_microbiology/).

The University of Manitoba is strongly committed to equity and diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from women, racialized persons, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, persons of all sexual orientations and genders, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority.  If you require accommodation supports during the recruitment process, please contact [email protected] or 204-474-7195. Please note this contact information is for accommodation reasons only.

Ideal Candidate

The ideal candidate for this exciting opportunity is a visionary scientific leader with clear capacity to take the helm of Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory as Vice President, and direct its domestic and international infectious disease science and research programs. This role requires excellent strategic and operational management skills. While the successful candidate will be supported by administrative and scientific program management teams, this position requires an individual who has demonstrated success in achieving results and fostering innovation through governance and reporting mechanisms that establish clear accountabilities and value inclusivity.

We are seeking an exemplary scientist and scientific leader who is qualified as a PhD, MD, or MD/PhD in infectious disease and/or microbiology. The leader has well-established relationships with academia and has demonstrated the ability to foster and inspire laboratory science and to uphold the highest standards of scientific excellence; thrives in a complex environment; establishes strategic collaborations with academia, other research institutes and industry, both nationally and internationally; and leverages these assets to achieve high impact results. Central to the NML’s leadership role is its success in driving and facilitating a strong and integrated Canadian public health laboratory network and leading transformative initiatives that result in timely adoption of new technologies.

The ideal candidate is an excellent communicator with outstanding interpersonal skills who inspires confidence and translates complex scientific concepts with ease to policymakers and to the public. The ideal applicant has managed a large organization and has demonstrated the ability to create an environment that attracts and maintains scientific talent, supports training and development, and fosters workplace wellness. As a champion for laboratory science, the leader brings a vision for the future of the NML and a passion for finding public health solutions through science. Proficiency in both official languages is a strong asset; however the Public Health Agency of Canada will ensure administrative measures are put in place to support federal official language obligations where required.

For Consideration

Pender & Howe Executive Search have been retained to lead this recruitment initiative on behalf of the Public Health Agency of Canada and the University of Manitoba.  For consideration, please address a copy of your Curriculum Vitae (CV) in confidence to Glenn Lesko at [email protected]

Application Closing Date: April 29, 2021 – 23:59 Pacific Time