Executive Director

University of Minnesota - Office of Human Resources
March 25, 2020
All Other -See Job Description, MN
Job Type


Minimum Qualifications
Research training and experience as evidenced by research publications, principal or co-principal investigator on multiple grants from federal agencies or equivalent bodies, demonstrated successful mentorship of post-doctoral fellows and/or residents and faculty. Passion for and commitment to cancer research as a means to improve human health is necessary. A terminal/advanced professional degree in a relevant field is required.

Desired Qualifications
The successful candidate will bring a strong record of leadership within the cancer research realm as well as international stature.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
A passionate visionary leader with a proven track record of managing an organization through transition and growth
Exceptional strategic thinking ability and demonstrated success in innovation, planning and implementation
Outstanding skills and proven success in securing research support from the full range of sources, including federal funding agencies, private foundations and philanthropy
Proven financial and organizational management skills; track record in the oversight of financial, legal and business operations; demonstrated strengths in workforce management
Knowledge of new and innovative models of collaboration and outreach; strong ethical values
Possesses a network of strong relationships with international leaders in cancer research community
Ability to effectively function as part of a team, and in collaboration with diverse audiences

About the Job

The University of Minnesota is a top ten public research university with externally funded research programs of more than $900 million. The Hormel Institute was established in Austin, Minnesota in 1942 in an agreement between the Regents of the University of Minnesota and the Hormel Foundation. Reporting to the University's Office of the Vice President for Research, the Institute has strong ties to other units of the University, and research collaborations with the Mayo Clinic and Hormel Foods Inc., all of which allow it to serve as a convener, catalyst, and entrepreneurial space for cutting-edge research and engagement. The Institute, which is an integral part of the University of Minnesota's Masonic Cancer Center, focuses on the discovery of better ways to prevent, detect, and treat cancer, especially with respect to determining cancer's basic molecular mechanisms in order to develop new anti-cancer agents. In the process, the Institute develops the next generation of global cancer-research leaders and builds world-changing partnerships. With a recently expanded campus and extraordinary infrastructure, including high-performance computing and a Titan Krios cryo-electron microscope, the Institute comprises an established community of scholars which is positioned to grow and excel.

The Executive Director provides strategic vision and support for The Hormel Institute programs, and leads efforts to promote collaboration across the University of Minnesota and with its key partners. S/he will be an established leader who will bring a robust cancer research program to the Institute, and will in addition enhance and diversify the revenue stream of the Institute with particular emphasis on philanthropic and extramural research support to enable its activities. The Executive Director will be the principal spokesperson for the Institute and will represent it in a variety of settings, both internal and external to the University.

This is a full time faculty appointment at a rank commensurate with experience and academic achievement of the selected candidate for the position. The Director will be tenured with approval from an appropriate program and will report to and advise the Vice President for Research.


Provide Strategic and Visionary Leadership for the Institute

  • Provide confident, thoughtful, and insightful leadership and guidance to the Hormel Institute and its programs
  • Champion the distinctive role that the Institute plays both internal to the University of Minnesota as well as externally to the broader research community
  • Enhance the Institute's efforts to build its strategic capacity and strengthen its reach and impact on solving pressing problems in cancer development and prevention by promoting collaborative efforts among units and campuses of the University of Minnesota and between the University and the broader community, including regional academic medical centers and research institutions such as the Masonic Cancer Center investigators in the Twin Cities and investigators at Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN.
  • Ensure the integration of sub-programs into the Institute's overall mission and that the overall focus and program of research remains agile and responsive to emerging research challenges in the broader space of cancer research, particularly as it relates to other health sciences associated with food and agriculture

Build Research Capacity

  • Leverage the many talents of the Institute's faculty and staff to nurture more collaborative research activities and to expand the boundaries of its current research
  • Grow externally funded research programs and identify other opportunities for sponsored research
  • Engage strategic partners in interdisciplinary research projects that are of global significance

Serve as a Unifying and Decisive University Leader

  • Ensure that the Hormel Institute's faculty and staff work as a highly effective team that is tightly connected to the broader University of Minnesota; this will require skillful delegation, consistent internal and external communication, decisive and transparent decision-making, and setting clear and consistent goals and standards
  • Continue to attract, retain, and develop the strongest possible faculty and staff
  • Work across the University and with relevant senior leadership to ensure that the Institute's goals are aligned with identified University goals
  • Support the University's research strategic plan focused on accelerating the transfer of knowledge for the public good, and help realize the potential for this land-grant university to contribute to community health and well-being
  • Work in strong collaboration with the Hormel Institute Advisory Committee to the Director consisting of three elected faculty and one research support supervisor.

Build Philanthropic Support

  • Inspire and lead the Institute's fundraising, both through personal involvement and by growing its integrated, well-coordinated advancement capacity
  • The Institute is a source of enormous pride to the community that surrounds it, and has a long history of receiving generous support from residents and other stakeholders; continue to grow these community relationships and demonstrate their value

Build upon the Hormel Institute's Strong Reputation

  • Act as a positive key spokesperson for the Institute
  • Robustly engage multiple constituencies, ranging from other research professionals to more general audiences and the public at large in support of extending the Institute's reach to ever wider and more diverse audiences

Develop and Commercialize Intellectual Property

  • Partner closely with the University's Technology Commercialization office to explore the commercial potential of such materials
  • Engage business and industry partners in relationships to license relevant technologies, or to sponsor research to support their development where appropriate

Translational and Clinical Research

  • Oversee operations of the clinical facility, the opening of which is imminent, and its possible expansion
  • Work closely with relevant University leaders to leverage the clinical facility's potential to impact not only Institute research but the surrounding community more broadly
  • Develop effective partnerships with Hormel Foods Inc to develop foods with cancer prevention properties

About the Department

The Hormel Institute, a biomedical research center of the University of Minnesota, was established in 1942 and has an excellent reputation and long history for producing world-class medical research. The Institute's research success has resulted in a second major expansion of its research facilities and includes an additional new state-of-the-art laboratory building that opened in January 2016. The Hormel Institute offers its research scientists complete access to state-of-the- art cutting edge equipment that includes a cryo-electron microscope (Titan Krios and Tecnai G2 Spirit Biotwin); FACS cell sorter; confocal microscopy; flow cytometry; protein crystallography robotics and defraction system; nano-HPLC-AB SCIEX triple TOF 5600 mass spectrometry; Leica tissue processor, embedder and microtome; real-time PCR instrumentation; 5 racks of Linux GPU supercomputers for computational biology and bioinformatics; spectrophotometers; and Western blot imagers.


How To Apply

Applications must be submitted online. To be considered for this position, please click the Apply button and follow the instructions. You will have the opportunity to complete an online application for the position and attach a cover letter and resume.

Additional documents may be attached after application by accessing your "My Job Applications" page and uploading documents in the "My Cover Letters and Attachments" section. This position requires that you attach: current curriculum vitae, cover letter and 3 letters of recommendation.

This position will remain open until filled.

To request an accommodation during the application process, please e-mail employ@umn.edu or call (612) 624-UOHR (8647).


The University recognizes and values the importance of diversity and inclusion in enriching the employment experience of its employees and in supporting the academic mission. The University is committed to attracting and retaining employees with varying identities and backgrounds.

The University of Minnesota provides equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. To learn more about diversity at the U: http://diversity.umn.edu.

Background Check Information

Any offer of employment is contingent upon the successful completion of a background check. Our presumption is that prospective employees are eligible to work here. Criminal convictions do not automatically disqualify finalists from employment.

About the U of M

The University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (UMTC)

The University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (UMTC), is among the largest public research universities in the country, offering undergraduate, graduate, and professional students a multitude of opportunities for study and research. Located at the heart of one of the nation's most vibrant, diverse metropolitan communities, students on the campuses in Minneapolis and St. Paul benefit from extensive partnerships with world-renowned health centers, international corporations, government agencies, and arts, nonprofit, and public service organizations.

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