Associate Director, External Manufacturing

Pennsylvania, United States
Wednesday, 12 August 2020
End of advertisement period
Monday, 12 October 2020
Contract Type
Full Time

University Overview

The University of Pennsylvania, the largest private employer in Philadelphia, is a world-renowned leader in education, research, and innovation. This historic, Ivy League school consistently ranks among the top 10 universities in the annual U.S. News & World Report survey. Penn has 12 highly-regarded schools that provide opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and continuing education, all influenced by Penn’s distinctive interdisciplinary approach to scholarship and learning.

Penn offers a unique working environment within the city of Philadelphia. The University is situated on a beautiful urban campus, with easy access to a range of educational, cultural, and recreational activities. With its historical significance and landmarks, lively cultural offerings, and wide variety of atmospheres, Philadelphia is the perfect place to call home for work and play.

The University offers a competitive benefits package that includes excellent healthcare and tuition benefits for employees and their families, generous retirement benefits, a wide variety of professional development opportunities, supportive work and family benefits, a wealth of health and wellness programs and resources, and much more.

Job Profile Title
Associate Director E

Job Description Summary

The Gene Therapy Program (GTP) is entering a new era of unprecedented opportunity with the great potential to reshape the face of medicine as we know it. Our discoveries have set the stage for successful treatments and possibly even cures for devastating genetic diseases.

The laboratory of Dr. Jim Wilson, at GTP of the University of Pennsylvania, has been a leader in the development of innovative vector technology for close to three decades. We have emerged as the “go-to” organization for public and private partners, who want to participate in the gene therapy space. Currently, we are positioned to lead another round of vector innovation and establish pre-clinical and clinical proof-of-concept in therapeutic applications of in-vivo genome editing.

Continuation of all GTP positions is contingent upon funding.

Job Description

Vector technology lies at the heart of GTP due to the contributions of the Wilson Lab. GTP has a long track record of success in developing novel vector technologies, manufacturing platforms and analytics as well as distributing vectors for research purposes. Once successful in the research environment, the vectors must be transferred to the clinic which requires expertise both regarding vector manufacturing and characterization. Our Vector Core is a state-of-the-art facility which provides vector-related materials and services in support of basic and translational research worldwide, produces vectors in support of IND-enabling research, develops and conducts GLP assays, oversees CMO's in vector production and is expanding to perform state-of-the-art process development.

Due to significant growth, the Vector Core is looking for a new Associate Director, External Manufacturing (ADEM) to lead the development of external CMC project plans for GTP programs.

As the ADEM, you will develop the external manufacturing plans and lead the interaction of the CMC cross-functional projects among GTP personnel, and between GTP and the Contract Manufacturing Organizations (CMOs). You will travel to CMOs during campaign launches and throughout the campaign, as needed to monitor and manage CMC process transfer, supply chain, budgets,  and ensure project milestones and timelines are being met from early to late-stage production at CMO. You will create and maintain comprehensive risk management plans for product production to minimize the impact of obstacles to overall campaign goals.

Top candidates in this role will have a strong background in biopharmaceutical manufacturing, process and analytical development, and process transfer as well as have experience in planning and managing CMC aspects of biopharmaceutical development.


  • Bachelor's Degree in Chemical or Biomedical Engineering with 8 or more years of experience with processes to make biologics, viral vectors, or vaccines
  • Experience with planning and managing CMC aspects of biopharmaceutical development required
  • Experience in process development and process transfer, focused on biologics, viral vectors, or vaccines required
  • Experience in CMO search, selection and management strongly preferred
  • Experience in person in plant (PIP) for production of biopharmaceutical products strongly preferred
  • Must have the ability to travel (domestic) 10 - 20A% of the time, particularly when production campaigns are being done
  • Must have a demonstrated ability to organize external resources to maximize quality and efficiency; maintain an overview of the entire process when planning a project, setting both short and long-term goals
  • Must work efficiently aligning actions to project targets, milestones, and priorities
  • Must have excellent communication skills, with the ability to provide clear, audience-focused descriptions of CMC tasks and issues, and proposed solutions to schedule challenges, all done in an open and honest manner
  • Demonstrated ability to facilitate project team meetings, enhance cross-functional communication, support decision making, influence outcomes, and ensure alignment among internal (and sometimes external) stakeholders.
  • Familiar with current issues and Regulatory requirements related to manufacturing using single-use equipment for drug substance and drug product production
  • Familiar with trends and developments in the gene therapy field and able to translate those developments into specific business advantages and risks related to production.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office suite (e.g. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Project, Outlook).

Job Location - City, State
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Department / School
Perelman School of Medicine

Pay Range
$72,837.00 - $138,391.00

Affirmative Action Statement

Penn adheres to a policy that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected class.

Special Requirements

Background check required after a conditional job offer is made. Consideration of the background check will be tailored to the requirements of the job.