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Health Scientist Administrator (Branch Chief)

National Institute of Health
Bethesda, Maryland
Salary commensurate with experience
Closing date
Dec 9, 2021

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Job Function
Position Type
Full Time
Mid Level
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Health Scientist Administrator (Branch Chief)
Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience Research Branch
Division of Neuroscience and Basic Behavioral Science (DNBBS)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)

The Division of Neuroscience and Basic Behavioral Science at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) is looking for a motivated individual to serve as Chief of the Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience Research Branch. DNBBS directs, plans, and supports research programs in basic neuroscience, human genetics, basic behavioral science, research training, resource development, technology development, drug discovery, and research dissemination. The Division also has the responsibility, in cooperation with other components of the Institute and the research community, to ensure that relevant basic science knowledge is generated and then harvested to create improved diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of mental and behavioral disorders.

The Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience Research Branch plans, supports, and administers research programs focused on preclinical therapeutics development and fundamental brain neuroscience research spanning from intracellular signaling and integrative systems pharmacology to neuroimmune/neuroendocrine neurobiology. The branch programs’ central goals the include the identification of novel targets, tools, and in vitro and in vivo assays in support of therapeutics development for mental illnesses. Advancement of these goals is facilitated by additional programs of research supporting efforts to identify fundamental mechanisms underlying neurotransmitter/neuromodulator and cell signal transduction and plasticity mechanisms in the brain and hormone and neuroimmune mechanisms of action on brain circuits and behavior.

The selected candidate will oversee and supervise program officers who initiate, plan, develop, and direct NIMH extramural research programs administered by the Branch. The selected candidate will also serve as a program officer for a portfolio of grants, contracts, and/or cooperative agreements focused on integrative systems pharmacology and will participate in collaborative activities with other NIH Institutes and Federal departments or agencies, as appropriate.

Competitive candidates are expected to be accomplished scientists with a demonstrated broad expertise in interdisciplinary neuroscience research. Experience in innovative preclinical therapeutics development approaches and supervisory experience is desired. A publication record, prior research experience, and evidence of familiarity with current literature in interdisciplinary neuroscience related to mental illness are essential. This position requires working both independently and collaboratively and offers opportunities to impact priorities, develop new initiatives, and contribute to the advancement of a national program of research.

Responsibilities include supervising scientific staff, planning and executing activities within the Branch’s scope of responsibilities, and aligning those activities with the NIMH strategic plan. Direct management of a portfolio of grants/contracts is also expected. Strong collaborative, organizational, oral, written, and communication skills are required.

Salary will be commensurate with the experience of the candidate. A full package of federal Civil Service benefits is available, including retirement, health and life insurance, long-term care insurance, leave, and a Thrift Savings Plan (401K equivalent). The successful candidate is subject to a background investigation and public financial disclosure requirements.

For medical and scientific specialties, qualification requirements, evaluation criteria, and application instructions, please view the vacancy announcement at


Applicants must be U.S. citizens and have a Ph.D., M.D., or equivalent degree from an accredited college or university, including acceptance of the dissertation in neuroscience with innovative preclinical therapeutics development expertise or other pertinent academic fields of sciences allied to health or health-related research.

Interested candidates should also send a letter of interest, including a curriculum vitae, to

The NIH encourages the application and nomination of qualified women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities. HHS and NIH are Equal Opportunity Employers.

As a condition of employment, all federal employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.  During the onboarding process, if selected, you must provide proof of vaccination.  An official job offer and continued employment is contingent on this requirement.  For more information on this requirement, visit the Safer Federal Workforce page on vaccines. If you need a COVID-19 vaccine, please visit

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