Assistant Director, Scientific Programs, Executive Office

Job Locations US-PA-Philadelphia
Executive Office
Regular Full-Time


The AACR is seeking a candidate to support AACR’s mission and programs that are designed to drive the future scientific agenda of the organization. Specifically, this position will support the Deputy Director, Scientific Programs, who oversees all AACR scientific working groups, AACR scientific achievement awards and lectureships, the Fellows of the AACR Academy, and all annual AACR committee appointments.


Collectively, the functions of the Assistant Director, Scientific Programs position will be to assist with new and ongoing scientific programs intended to further advance cancer research across a wide variety of scientific disciplines. Background knowledge of scientific research and experience working in a scientific environment are required for this position. Eligible candidates must possess a high level of attention to detail as well as exceptional organizational, writing, and communication skills.


One aspect of the AACR’s mission is to strengthen, support, and promote focused scientific initiatives that facilitate increased progress and enhanced cutting-edge contributions to the understanding of cancer by select scientific disciplines. Pursuant to this mission, the AACR promotes enriched collaborations among cancer researchers with common interests in focused realms of cancer research. AACR scientific working groups function within the framework of the AACR to explore expanded research opportunities and to advance discoveries that lead to greater knowledge and understanding of cancer. There are currently eight AACR scientific working groups dedicated to the following scientific disciplines: cancer evolution, cancer prevention, cancer immunology, chemistry in cancer research, molecular epidemiology, pediatric cancer, radiation science and medicine and the tumor microenvironment. The need to establish additional groups dedicated to timely scientific areas is analyzed on a rolling basis in response to the needs of the cancer research community.


The Assistant Director, Scientific Programs will work closely with the leadership bodies of all scientific working groups and be responsible for assisting with the administration of all relevant programs, activities, and initiatives pertaining to all groups and will be tasked with ensuring the timely completion of all implemented projects.


In addition to scientific working groups, the AACR annually convenes a variety of committees to assist with achieving the goals of the organization. These committees are formed to provide valuable support and guidance to AACR’s leadership, shape the AACR’s Annual Meeting, and assist with the selection of scientific achievement award and scientific research grant recipients. This position will be charged with researching and tracking established and potential committee members and as needed, will involve additional coordination of committee activities when applicable to the functions of the Executive Office.

Lastly, one of the major functions of the AACR is to recognize and honor outstanding scientific achievement across all cancer research disciplines. Two of the mechanisms by which the AACR accomplishes this goal is through its AACR Scientific Achievement Awards Program and the AACR Academy.


Annually, the AACR distributes over 20 scientific achievement awards and lectureships to laboratory researchers and physician-scientists who have made significant contributions to our understanding of the biology, diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of cancer. Such individuals are selected through a formal nomination and election process and are celebrated throughout the year and primarily in conjunction with the AACR Annual Meeting.


Similarly, the mission of the AACR Academy is to recognize and honor distinguished scientists whose major scientific contributions have propelled significant innovation and progress against cancer, and to leverage the expertise of the global brain trust of Fellows of the AACR Academy to advance the mission of the AACR to prevent and cure all cancers through research, education, communication, collaboration, science policy and advocacy, and funding for cancer research.


Each year, a new class of Fellows are elected and inducted into the AACR Academy, which represents the pinnacle honorific bestowed by the AACR to any individual. Collectively, all Fellows of the AACR Academy provide ongoing advice and counsel to the AACR leadership on scientific topics of timeliness and significance as well as other matters of importance. The Assistant Director, Scientific Programs position will be required to assist with the annual management and execution of all polies and procedures associated with both the AACR’s Scientific Achievement Awards Program as well as the Fellows of the AACR Academy.



•Facilitate and support effective communication internally between AACR departments and divisions, as well as externally between the AACR, the AACR scientific working groups, AACR committee members, AACR scientific achievement award recipients, and Fellows of the AACR Academy
•Interact with AACR colleagues and members to organize events ranging in size from small committee meetings to large-scale scientific programs
•Communicate regularly with cancer researchers, clinicians, and physician-scientists primarily via telephone, videoconference, and email
•Prepare, organize, and maintain AACR committee, scientific achievement award, scientific working group, and AACR Academy documents and historical files
•Assist with the appointment process for all AACR committees, AACR scientific working group, and AACR Academy leadership bodies
•Ensure the timely completion of projects by determining priorities and tracking deadlines
•Assist as needed with updating and maintaining webpage content applicable to AACR committees, scientific achievement awards, scientific working groups, and Fellows of the AACR Academy
•Assist with the coordination of logistics related to housing, travel, and registration for members attending conferences, meetings, and think tanks organized in collaboration with AACR scientific working groups and the Fellows of the AACR Academy
•Prepare agendas, budgets, minutes, proposals, and any other necessary files as needed related to meetings and programs of AACR scientific working groups, Fellows of the AACR Academy, and select AACR committees
•Travel to the AACR Annual Meeting and other events as needed to implement scientific programs
•Perform all essential duties and functions of the position and other related duties as assigned and as necessary


•PhD, MD, MD, PhD, or equivalent degree in cancer biology or a cancer-related science required
•Eligible candidates must have a minimum of seven (7) years of relevant research experience at the postdoctoral level or beyond and a minimum of three (3) years of relevant administrative or project management experience, preferably in the non-profit sector
•Interested individuals must possess a passion and commitment to cancer and cancer-related sciences and possess the following attributes:
   •Broad, in-depth knowledge of cancer and cancer-related sciences
   •Ability to work independently and within a team environment
   •Ability to build, foster, and maintain relationships with a wide range of stakeholders
   •Capability to manage time and prioritize tasks while adapting to diverse workloads and deadlines
   •Excellence in written and verbal communications
   •Precise attention to detail
   •Exceptional administrative and organizational skills
   •Desire to follow through on projects in a timely manner
   •Strong interpersonal skills and professional demeanor
   •High proficiency in Microsoft Office applications and ability to navigate technological software and platforms including virtual meeting platforms (i.e.,
     Microsoft Teams, Zoom, etc.)
   •Knowledge of scientific literature and trends in the cancer research field
   •Ability to travel to meetings and conferences as needed  



How to Apply:
To apply, please submit a resume, cover letter, writing sample, and salary expectations.


Equal Employment Opportunity


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