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VP/Head Translational Medicine

Reference Number: 2994
Location: MA

Our client is a rapidly growing microbiome therapeutics platform company.  They have asked us to assist them in their search for a VP/Head Translational Medicine.

Major tasks and responsibilities will include:

  • Plays an impactful strategic and operational role in the company’s drug discovery through early clinical research efforts.  Together with CSO and SVP of Discovery, provides oversight of teams discovering and developing novel microbial therapeutics for infectious disease, inflammation, metabolic disorders and rare diseases. Responsible for furthering the company’s strategic R&D roadmap to support the company’s vision and R&D milestones.
  • Ensures optimal operational performance and synergies across various research interests.  Creates initiatives to establish R&D teams and pathways that fully harness the company’s scientific platform and therapeutic opportunities.  Defines TA-focused work streams that allow for high R&D synergy and rapid drug program advancement.
  • Leads mid-size research team while building and enhancing function.  Plays critical role in being a “R&D talent magnet” for this organization.  Grooms staff to achieve their career goals/potential and to further the success of the organization.  Participates in creating a positive, “winning” culture. 
  • Plays a broad role as a senior leader across multiple programs by providing functional and strategic input.  Fosters an innovative environment with the purpose of advancing the company’s research interests and furthering the field of microbiome research.
  • Builds and maintains strong internal and external relationships.  Leverages those relationships to remain informed, create collaborations, and achieve goals that might not be attainable relying only on internal resources.  Identifies and proactively cultivates partnerships with academic institutions, life science companies, and health authorities in order to attain company goals.
  • Shoulders responsibility for preclinical development in order to advance drug candidates from late stage discovery to the clinic.  The Head of Translational Research will partner with the SVP of Discovery during the discovery phase of lead programs and then direct and manage the design and execution of IND-enabling studies during preclinical development through early clinical PoC.
  • Prepares the R&D organization for rapid growth (both headcount and projects).  Ensures that the organization is optimally structured for scalability.  Be a catalyst in advancing organization to achieve R&D and employee headcount goals for the next 3-5 years.
  • Identifies project risks and contingency planning.
  • Drives programs through IND and Clinical PoC.
  • Supervises internal and CRO study-related activities through IND and IND assembly and submission.
  • Participates together with SVP Discovery in implementing biomarker integration strategy.
  • Provides leadership to define strategic objectives and then successfully implement required preclinical and development programs through matrixed program teams.
  • Ensures highest caliber of internal staff through hiring, mentorship and appropriate oversight and an effective network of outside partners, collaborators and service organizations.
  • Contributes to discovery efforts by collaboration, guidance, and support of Discovery team.
  • Initiates and manages relationships with third parties such as KOLs and academic partners in specific disease areas to develop a high-level target product profile, and help align discovery and preclinical development activities to the ultimate clinical endpoints.
  • Together with CSO and SVP of Discovery, leads the effort in generating and obtaining consensus on the criteria for the nomination of a drug candidate to preclinical development and clinical development.
  • Participates in the evaluation, selection, and management of CROs, contractors, and vendors.
  • Manages overall preclinical development operations, project resources, budget, and timelines for all assigned programs.
  • Reports to the CSO.

We seek candidates with the following qualifications:

  • PhD or MD/PhD is required for this position with at least 12 years of experience in drug development and managing preclinical operations.
  • Superior management skills and business acumen. Historical evidence of the ability to attract, groom, lead, and inspire high-performance teams.
  • Impressive track record of delivering outstanding results, including the successful filing of multiple INDs.
  • Past leadership in the transition of discovery programs into clinical development.
  • In-depth knowledge and expertise in developing large molecule therapeutics or vaccines.
  • Highly organized and able to prioritize and handle multiple tasks simultaneously.
  • Detailed knowledge of the drug development process, Good Laboratory Practices, and FDA regulatory requirements.
  • Ability to independently solve problems related to CRO monitoring and management.
  • Experienced in at least one of the following therapeutic areas: infectious disease, inflammation/auto-immunity, metabolism, or rare diseases.
  • Patient centric mindset.
  • Desire to take a hands-on approach to advancing the portfolio.
  • Proven track record of achieving product success/approval.
  • Experience building and leading an excellent preclinical development function, including outsourcing components and organizational design, and the recruitment, development, and retention of a first-rate team.
  • Experience building and managing collaborations with scientists, CROs, consultants, pharmaceutical partners, and other outside organizations.
  • Large and small company work experience in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment.
  • Experience in conducting preclinical studies leading to successful IND submissions.
  • Strong project management experience.
  • Microbiology experience.


Do you have the skills and experience we seek and want to advance your career with one of the world’s leading companies? If so, please email your resume as a Word attachment to us, reference 2994. No calls or faxes, please. Include your daytime phone number and we will contact you confidentially or reply to your email.