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Executive Director, Early Discovery Biology

Req #: 17001773
Location: Cambridge, Cambridge US
Job Category: Research and Early Development
Work Location: 200 Cambridge Park Drive CAMBRIDGE2 02140
Organization: Celgene Corporation
Schedule: 40
Employee Status: Full time
Job Type: Regular
Job Level:
Other Locations:US- MA- Cambridge


The Executive Director, Early Discovery Biology will be instrumental in setting the strategic direction for drug discovery and early clinical development at Celgene. This position will work in close collaboration with other senior management across the global Celgene organization to build and enhance a world-class Discovery & Translational unit. The successful candidate for this position must have extensive senior leadership experience in discovery and translational research in the pharmaceutical/biotechnology industry and/or academic medicine, with an emphasis on the development of immune-based therapeutics. 

The ideal candidate will have a thorough understanding of all the requirements and processes needed to advance drugs through discovery and into development from target selection/validation to lead ID to lead optimization, through safety assessment, into clinical development, and ultimately toward registration. In particular, a deep understanding of human biology is required (a) to select targets for new drug discovery programs; (b) to identify and deploy human-relevant assays for phenotypic screens; and (c) to engage with external partners to advance programs in parallel with Celgene’s first-in-class discovery portfolio. A demonstrated track record of leading research groups that have moved compounds from fundamental insight from human biology into proof-of-concept clinical trials is essential. 

The successful candidate should possess a broad knowledge of extant drug discovery targets being pursued across the industry and clear insight into the future direction of novel therapeutics and an ability to identify and critically evaluate in-licensing opportunities. Facility in formulating broad strategic objectives and operationalizing them in the research team. The candidate should be energetic and inspirational, with communication skills that enable him/her to be persuasive to a broad and heterogeneous group of stakeholders. 


•  Attracting, retaining, and developing a world-class discovery and translational research team and building a culture of innovation that cultivates teamwork and optimizes performance. 
•  Providing scientific perspective and leadership to discovery efforts. A primary focus and experience in human genetics, clinical translation and inflammation/immunology therapeutic areas are preferred. 
•  Selecting new targets and assays for new drug discovery programs, including target-based screens and cell- based phenotypic screens. 
•  Selecting among diverse therapeutic modalities (small molecules, monoclonal antibodies, protein degradation, nucleic acid) that recapitulate causal human biology to initiate new drug discovery programs. 
•  Integrating clinical and molecular data from ongoing clinical trials, as well as complex molecular data from other translational studies, to select new targets and pathways relevant to a wide-range of immune-mediated diseases. 
•  Building and delivering a sustainable flow of Development Candidates for clinical development consistent with agreed strategies. 
•  Representing the company both internally and externally with both the scientific and business communities. 
•  Actively seeks product and/or technology alliances with appropriate academic, government, and industry partners. 
•  Demonstrate strong people management skills, leading by example with a high level of emotional intelligence, and be willing to work collaboratively with other functional groups. 
•  Works with project teams to set objectives and manage multiple projects. Responsible for data review, analysis, and interpretation from a variety of sources and evaluates the impact on research projects and goals. Provides input into go/no-go decisions for projects. 
•  Effectively applies and enables state-of-the-art technologies and best practices to improve operational efficiency. 
•  Ensures performance standards are maintained and that experimental work is performed to a consistently high standard. 
•  Outstanding presentation and communication skills. 
•  Balances leadership strength with self-awareness, confidence, and humility. 

M.D. or M.D. / Ph.D. in a scientific discipline with at least 18 years of relevant work experience. Immunology, clinical translation & human genetics experience a plus. 


•  M.D. or M.D. / Ph.D. in scientific discipline with at least 18 years of relevant pharmaceutical, and/or academic experience 
•  Deep scientific knowledge and technical skills 
•  Actively maintains current awareness and high scientific profile in areas of expertise 
•  Excellent managerial and leadership skills and interest in developing talent 
•  Strong interpersonal capabilities and ability to build networks 
•  Excellent verbal communication and technical writing skills 
•  Ability to present clearly using scientific and clinical terminology 
•  Ability to lead cross-functional teams and act as a true team player 


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