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Executive Director, Alzheimer’s Disease Data Initiative

Talenton Group
Seattle, Washington State
350,000 - 375,000
Closing date
Jun 13, 2024

Job Details

The Alzheimer’s Disease Data Initiative (AD Data Initiative) aims to fundamentally transform Alzheimer’s disease research, accelerating progress toward new treatments and cures for Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. We enable the widest possible access to the greatest possible amount of data to accelerate the discovery of biomarkers, diagnostics, treatments, and cures for Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.

Gates Ventures provides human resources to the AD Data Initiative through a donated services agreement, including this Executive Director role. The Executive Director should expect to function primarily in support of the AD Data Initiative’s strategic objectives and as the leader of other Gates Ventures employees who support this charitable organization.

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Over the past two decades, the pace of drug discovery and development for Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia has increased dramatically. Although effective new treatments are not yet available to ease the suffering of people with dementia and the people who care for them, the tremendous amount of information that has been collected on their behalf could accelerate the pace of discovery and progress toward treatment or cure.

Our goal is to bring together the major existing platforms in such a way that they each retain their unique properties while simultaneously stitching them together to allow access to critical data needed for clinical trials of innovative interventions. We employ mechanisms to ensure transparency, avoid redundancy, and allow replication and advancement of the work.

This interoperability layer (the AD Workbench) will facilitate discovery in multiple areas, but most importantly will improve our understanding of how to characterize dementia more precisely. This will include the identification of biomarkers that enable rapid, inexpensive, and accessible ways to measure the stage and severity of dementia, from its earliest origin to its more severe forms. It will also include more precise methods for measuring individual symptoms of dementia. It will support the characterization and stratification of people with dementia into the subgroups most likely to respond to precision therapies.

Overall, the goals of the AD Data Initiative are to encourage and enable interoperability across existing platforms; expand and enhance the community of data contributors and users; evaluate and ensure the quality of data; and protect the privacy of participants from studies and trials. This effort will facilitate an inclusive community of researchers working to solve the problems of dementia.


 The Executive Director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Data Initiative will lead the organization’s efforts in moving Alzheimer’s disease (AD) innovation further and faster by leading a strategy and developing a platform to connect researchers with the data they need to develop new and better treatments and diagnostic tools for AD and related dementias. This role will also oversee a small 5 to 6-person team as well as a limited set of vendors & contractors.

The Executive Director will ensure that the team aligns with the organization’s mission and works tirelessly and effectively to achieve its vision. To see the vision through, the role will partner closely with a range of external innovators and health experts, working in partnership with colleagues at partner organizations, including Advisory Board organizations and funding agencies. Role

The role will report to the Managing Director of Health & Life Sciences. It will also be responsible to the Board and its members as well as the Advisory Board and its members who represent key stakeholders in the Alzheimer’s disease community and the people whose vision created the Alzheimer’s Disease Data Initiative. The Executive Director will establish relationships with key stakeholders/leaders and will encourage their organizations to contribute data and use the platform to implement novel solutions. The role will also engage the academic community who act as critical contributors and thought leaders to this effort.



Leadership Responsibilities:

The Executive Director of AD Data Initiative sets clear expectations aligned with organizational objectives, manages performance, supports development, and creates an environment for success. The role will provide guidance and feedback to team members to enable the highest organizational impact. It will establish the team’s vision, oversee strategy development, and ensure key performance indicators are met. The Executive Director will also inspire the AD Data Initiative team to work collaboratively and effectively toward clear goals and set clear expectations aligned with the organization's objectives.

Overall Responsibilities:

  • Build and provide leadership to the internal AD Data Initiative team.
  • Manage the team of specialists who will carry out the technical, scientific, legal, and ethical work required to build and maintain an optimized platform with sufficient data to address priority research questions.
  • Provide oversight to the operations team within the organization, including but not limited to contracting, budget management, and legal considerations (e.g., GDPR compliance and licensing).
  • Develop the roadmap for the AD Data Initiative’s portfolio, with support from the Health & Life Sciences Leadership team.
  • Actively participate in the solicitation, appraisal, and funding of projects that will use data to create important new knowledge for the AD Data Initiative’s research community to address priority research questions, including the identification of external funding resources to support the organization’s own platform/product development efforts, data related expenses, and operations.
  • Report regularly to the Board of Directors, the Advisory Board, and the funders to ensure the organization is meeting their expectations and is responsive to their feedback.
  • Drive external relationships in close partnership with colleagues and other partners, to identify opportunities and update the priority research questions.
  • Inspire key decision-makers to invest in such models of AD Data Initiative innovation-led healthcare.
  • Effectively build partnerships, working collaboratively across a complex, multi-stakeholder environment to meet shared objectives.
  • Serving as the primary relationship manager with key members of the Advisory Board and Funders. Developing and managing partnerships with other organizations that can support or complement the AD Data Initiative’s capabilities and efforts.
  • Keep up to date on developments in the science of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.


    • Medical doctor or advanced biomedical degree with extensive experience in healthcare innovation and medical research data with an emphasis on Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia.
    • 15+ years of progressive, relevant experience in the Alzheimer’s and related dementias field; or allied fields.
    • 10+ years of leadership experience, including leading and managing major projects/organizations with substantial budgets.
    • Demonstrated success with implementation/action plans and objectives where analysis of situations or data requires in-depth knowledge of relevant organizations, competitive environment, technology, economic, and social implications of activities.
    • A track record of successfully managing complex scientific research partnerships.
    • Experience in developing and managing strong partnerships and relationships inside and outside the organization, managing conflicts, and building consensus. Effective as a collaborator in complex internal & external organizations.
    • Experience working in a matrixed environment.
    • People management experience, including the development of team members at various stages of their professional careers and the ability to build a collaborative and effective culture.
    • Excellent written and oral communication skills requiring communication with a broad audience representing diverse stakeholders.
    • Comfortable with highly unstructured and ambiguous situations; ability to proactively identify solutions in such situations and execute those approaches.
    • Commitment to the organization’s core values, mission, and programs with an approach that is consistent with the organization’s guiding principles and holding self to the highest ethical standards.


Hiring global leaders and talented innovators for the social impact sector. Seeking experts to develop interventions that improve the lives of millions of people around the globe.

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