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Director of the Gene Therapy Center-Open Rank

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, NC

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Executive Administration Jobs
C-Level & Executive Directors
Employment Type
Full Time
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Job Details


Peds-Genetics and Metabolism - 412010

Posting Open Date:


Open Until Filled:


Position Type:

Permanent Faculty

Working Title:

Director of the Gene Therapy Center-Open Rank

Appointment Type:

Open Rank

Vacancy ID:



Full-Time Permanent

Hours per week:




Position Location:

North Carolina, US

Hiring Range:

Dependent on Experience and Qualifications

Proposed Start Date:


Primary Purpose of Organizational Unit:

The UNC School of Medicine has a rich tradition of excellence and care. Our mission is to improve the health and wellbeing of North Carolinians, and others whom we serve. We accomplish this by providing leadership and excellence in the interrelated areas of patient care, education, and research. We strive to promote faculty, staff, and learner development in a diverse, respectful environment where our colleagues demonstrate professionalism, enhance learning, and create personal and professional sustainability. We optimize our partnership with the UNC Health System through close collaboration and commitment to service.

Our vision is to be the nation’s leading public school of medicine. We are ranked 2nd in primary care education among all US schools of medicine and 5th among public peers in NIH research funding. Our Allied Health Department is home to five top-ranked divisions, and we are home to 18 top-ranked clinical and basic science departments in NIH research funding.

Our mission is to improve the health and well-being of North Carolinians and others whom we serve. We accomplish this by providing leadership and excellence in the interrelated areas of patient care, education, and research.

Patient Care: We will promote health and provide superb clinical care while maintaining our strong tradition of reaching underserved populations and reducing health disparities across North Carolina and beyond.

Education: We will prepare tomorrow’s health care professionals and biomedical researchers by facilitating learning within innovative curricula and team-oriented interprofessional education. We will cultivate outstanding teaching and research faculty, and we will recruit outstanding students and trainees from highly diverse backgrounds to create a socially responsible, highly skilled workforce.

Research: We will develop and support a rich array of outstanding health sciences research programs, centers, and resources. We will provide infrastructure and opportunities for collaboration among disciplines throughout and beyond our University to support outstanding research. We will foster programs in the areas of basic, translational, mechanistic, and population research.

Position Summary:

The University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill is seeking candidates for a tenured associate professor or full professor faculty position in the Department of Pediatrics. Rank will be determined at a level commensurate with the applicant’s experience and accomplishments. This position will have an administrative role as the Director for the UNC Gene Therapy Center, a productive, well-funded, and internationally recognized center for both adeno-associated virus and lentivirus vector development. A supplement in salary is included for the administrative role.

The UNC School of Medicine created the Gene Therapy Center in 1993 with the goal of merging genetics research with healthcare delivery. The mission of the Gene Therapy Center is to focus on the development of novel gene delivery systems and application of translational research for patient populations affected by genetic disorders. Goals include providing an intellectual environment for a diverse community of research scientists dedicated to basic and translational research; these scientists explore the molecular biology of viral and non-viral vector delivery systems for use in basic research with the eventual goal of human gene therapy. Towards this end, the UNC Gene Therapy Center has engaged in a number of seminal Phase I gene transfer studies. These studies have included patients with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, Hemophilia B, and Mucopolysaccharidosis. Additional goals of the Gene Therapy Center include understanding the mechanism of cell entry, persistence, and immune response at the basic science level in order to create more efficient gene transfer vectors. To accomplish this, the Gene Therapy Center brings together a diverse group of gene therapy scientists to not only share facilities, but also work collaboratively to advance the understanding of gene delivery mechanisms. In addition, a specialized state of the art UNC Vector Core facility, created to support preclinical gene therapy studies, provides important resources to academic investigators on campus and across the globe.

The Director of the Gene Therapy Center should ideally be a visionary physician-scientist or research scientist leader who will build upon the existing strengths of the Gene Therapy Center to keep the center innovating into the next decade. In addition to conducting their own gene therapy research, the Director of the Gene Therapy Center will have responsibility for strategic planning, development, and overall accountability of the Center. As such, this position will oversee faculty, administration, and finances for the Gene Therapy Center. The Director will support researchers and strengthen the collaboration of the Gene Therapy Center within the School of Medicine and beyond. In this role, the Director will provide the vision and intellectual leadership across the basic and clinical science aspects of the center. This includes developing a plan for expanding translational research within the center, and leading new early phase clinical trials based upon the science of Gene Therapy Center members. The new director’s plans for fulfilling the Gene Therapy Center’s mission in the application of translational research for patient populations affected by genetic disorders will be instrumental in the continued growth and success of the center.

Minimum Education and Experience Requirements:

MD, MD/PhD, or PhD required.

Preferred Qualifications, Competencies, and Experience:

Preference will be shown for candidates having an active demonstrated record of conducting clinical research in the area of gene therapy in diseases that impact children, including NIH-funded clinical trials, with a background in and knowledge of compliance with regulatory standards and good clinical practice guidelines. This includes the use of current Good Manufacturing Practice in the production of gene therapy preparations for use in humans. Preferred research experience also includes leading collaborations among basic and clinical scientists to bring gene therapy treatments from the bench to bedside.

In addition, candidates will possess excellent written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills required of a leader to build trusting relationships and identify common goals. Experience recruiting to build collaborations and understanding processes that may need to be navigated for human subjects research in gene therapy (eg, potential tech transfer, partnering with industry and philanthropy) are preferred.

The ideal candidate will have demonstrated research and leadership experience necessary to lead a productive, collaborative center at a leading academic institution. This includes experience monitoring operational, financial, and research outcomes and reporting back to Departmental and School leadership.

Campus Security Authority Responsibilities:

Not Applicable.


The nation’s first public university is at the heart of what’s next, preparing a diverse student body to become creators, explorers, innovators and leaders in North Carolina and throughout the world. Carolina’s nationally recognized, innovative teaching, campus-wide spirit of inquiry and dedication to public service continue the legacy that began in 1795 when the University first opened its doors to students.

Here, in one of America's most beautiful college settings, we offer exceptional careers in richly diverse fields. Come explore what UNC-Chapel Hill has to offer you.

Undergraduate Enrollment: 19,117

Graduate/Professional Enrollment: 10,894

Total Student Enrollment: 30,011

Founded: 1789, as the first state university in the United States

Type of Institution: Public, four-year

Undergraduate Admission: 15,961

Graduate/Professional Enrollment: 10,039

Total Student Enrollment: 26,000

Faculty: 3,000

Percentage of faculty who hold Ph.D.s or the highest degrees in their field: 94 percent

Faculty/student ratio: 1/14

Location: UNC is located in the heart of Chapel Hill, the best college town in America! It's a friendly town of about 40,000 in the geographical center of North Carolina. Chapel Hill is at the western point of the Research Triangle, an area of about one million people, comprised of Chapel Hill, the cities of Durham and Raleigh, and the Research Triangle Park, home of many corporate offices and scientific research centers. Carolina is about 30 miles from the state capital, Raleigh, and 20 minutes from Raleigh-Durham International Airport.

Chapel Hill's main street, Franklin Street, borders the campus and offers shops, coffee houses, cafés, movie theaters and houses of worship. The town has a historic district, museum, library, parks, malls, and many recreational facilities.

Origins of Carolina's students: 82 percent of UNC's freshmen are from North Carolina and 18 percent are from out-of-state. Our students come from 42 different states and our international students represent 37 countries.

Size of freshman class: Approximately 3,400

Class size: Barely five percent of undergraduate classes contain more than 100 students; two-thirds of undergraduate classes have fewer than 30 students. Forty-one percent have fewer than 20 students, including First Year Seminars, in which first-year students work closely with professors.

Sports and athletic programs: UNC is an NCAA Division I school with 28 varsity teams. Carolina is the proud home of the Dean Smith Center, Kenan Stadium, Carmichael Auditorium, Koury Natatorium, and many other fine athletic facilities. Students join more than 60 intramural and club sports, which include baseball, bowling, crew, golf, lacrosse, rock climbing, rugby, tae kwon do, and ultimate frisbee. The Student Recreation Center offers weight training, aerobics, stair machines, and all the equipment you would expect to find at a great health club! Carolina offers a newly renovated outdoor pool and indoor pools, a golf course, tennis courts, and the longest zipline in America!

Number of residence halls: Incoming undergraduates will live in one of Carolina's 29 residence halls, which are wired for Internet access and cable television.

Scholarships and financial aid: About 40 percent of UNC-Chapel Hill students receive scholarships and/or some form of financial aid.

Special research institutes: Institute for Research in Social Science, Institute of Outdoor Drama, Morehead Planetarium, Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise, Institute of Government, Institute of African American Research.

Career services: On-campus counseling, job fairs, résumé writing service, internships, placement services.

Technological facilities: Students find multiple uses for Carolina's state-of-the-art technological resources. They can access Carolina's computer services through Academic Technology and Networks, which manages academic computing, e-mail, microcomputing labs, interactive media presentation, video and classroom support, and a help desk. The MetaLab oversees the development of SunSITE, one of the world's busiest digital library and electronic publishing projects.

Students may open e-mail accounts, and many use campus computer resources to construct personal Web pages. Students in residence halls have hardwired network connections to the Internet and cable television in their rooms. At the ATN Training center, students may take classes on software packages and utilities. Computer labs are available for student use all over campus.

Carolina Computing Initiative: Beginning with the freshman class of 2000, undergraduates must purchase laptop computers. The University has arranged for IBM to offer computers at excellent prices. Students, faculty, and staff will enjoy cost savings, higher quality compatible equipment, and better technical support through CCI.

The Study Abroad program allows students to live and learn in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the Pacific Rim, Africa, and the Americas.

The Honors Program offers special seminars, research programs, and the chance to design your own independent studies.

Carolina students spend time in public service through student organizations, the Campus Y, the Carolina Center for Public Service, and courses that incorporate community service.

UNC's chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, a national collegiate honor society, is the oldest in North Carolina, dating from 1904. There are many other honorary societies at Carolina.

UNC offers ROTC programs in all branches of national military service.

Through the First Year Seminars program, first year students will understand what it means to study at a premier research university. They will learn from faculty members and share in their research in seminars of no more than 20 students.

Life outside the classroom: More than 370 clubs, teams, and student organizations offer something for everyone! You can choose from among musical and dramatic performing groups, publications, ethnic and religious clubs, the Campus Y and other service organizations, fraternities and sororities, and pre- professional organizations. Whatever your interests, you will find others at Carolina who share them!

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