Skip to main content

This job has expired

Laboratory Director

Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Oak Ridge, Tennessee
Closing date
Mar 24, 2023

View more

Career Level
Education Level
Job Type
Relocation Cost
Sector Type

Job Details


The UT-Battelle Board of Governors seeks a widely recognized science and technology leader, with demonstrated abilities to drive scientific, engineering, and technical excellence and mission impact to serve as the Director of Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The lab director must be capable of managing a large, complex research and development institution and possess an understanding of the importance of integrating fundamental research and applied research and development to deliver impactful outcomes.

The lab director must be a strategic and open communicator, capable of engaging and inspiring some of our nation’s best minds through a shared vision and strategy with inclusion and diversity as a guiding principle, and adept at conveying complex problems and opportunities to multiple audiences.

Major Duties/Responsibilities

ORNL is a world-class research and development institution assigned important DOE missions in fundamental science, energy, and national security. ORNL operates several national user facilities and has a diverse portfolio of research and development. This diversity requires an approachable and empowering leader capable of being conversant in multiple technical fields, with excellent strategic insight, and skillful management of a broad range of skills, capabilities, operational hazards, and risks. Moreover, the lab director must be a national thought leader in ensuring the continued importance of science and technology in solving major challenges in fundamental science, energy, environment, and security.

ORNL is responsible for multiple, highly complex, multi-year and multi-billion-dollar technical programs and projects. The lab director must understand the rigor and diverse skill sets necessary to successfully deliver these initiatives in an integrated fashion.

ORNL is one of DOE’s largest multi-program research and development institutions. ORNL’s continued impact and relevance will be enhanced through an extensive set of partners. The lab director must be a collaborator, able to seek out, nurture relationships, and team with R&D partners from other laboratories, universities, and industry.

Located in east Tennessee, ORNL has historical roots in the Manhattan Project and a special relationship with the local communities, region, and state of Tennessee. The UT-Battelle Board of Governors is accountable to ensure that ORNL becomes an even more impactful R&D institution, increasingly relevant in today’s world. The lab director must draw appropriately on the past, be able to see and lead the institution into the future and do so by fostering a work environment that demands simultaneous excellence in the science and engineering mission, operations, and community engagement.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Create a compelling shared vision and associated strategy for a complex research and development organization, and gain commitment, trust, and ownership for success across the diversity of internal and external stakeholders.
  • Provide national science and technology leadership to ensure ORNL is a key provider of world-class science and engineering to address large, complex challenges in fundamental science, energy, environment, and security.
  • Demonstrate approachable and empowering leadership, collaboration, and commitment to organizational priorities related to people, culture, safety and health, inclusion and workforce diversity, and a respectful and supportive work environment, including development and implementation of an effective diversity, equity, and inclusion strategy.
  • Attract, develop, and retain the highest quality diverse scientific, engineering, managerial, and professional leadership to ensure a future talent pipeline. Create cohesive leadership through effective delegation of responsibility and authority and setting goals for and evaluation of the performance of the senior leadership team.
  • Set expectations for institutional priorities, performance, and outcomes. Ensure simultaneous excellence in science and engineering mission, operations, and community engagement with integrity and a strong commitment to and engagement with staff, and local and extended communities.
  • Enhance collaboration, teamwork, and partnerships across the Lab and other stakeholders, including DOE and its laboratories, affiliated universities, UT-Battelle partners, and the region.
  • Achieve excellence in operations to include safety, security, facility management, financial operations, human resources, environmental management, and information systems management.

Qualifications Required

Professional and Personal Qualifications

  • Ability to actively listen with the intention to learn and understand needs of internal and external constituents and balance the priorities of a diverse workforce with deliverables of a complex scientific and engineering organization.
  • Demonstrated commitment to the development of staff and leadership within the framework of diversity, equity, and inclusion as the path to excellence.
  • Outstanding credentials alongside a demonstrated record of scientific and technical achievement, including an earned Ph.D. in a relevant field or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Record of ability to create and implement a shared vision and strategy, to align and empower staff and resources to achieve goals through integration and teamwork, and to build and direct diverse, multidisciplinary organizations.

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply.  UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.

Interested parties should contact Matt Elam, ORNL Talent Acquisition Manager.



Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the largest science and energy national laboratory in the Department of Energy system. ORNL’s scientific programs focus on materials, neutron science, energy, high-performance computing, systems biology and national security. ORNL partners with the state of Tennessee, universities and industries to solve challenges in energy, advanced materials,manufacturing, security and physics. The laboratory's science and technology innovations are translated into applications for economic development and global security. The laboratory is home to several of the world’s top supercomputers and is a leading neutron science and nuclear energy research facility that includes the Spallation Neutron Source and High Flux Isotope Reactor. ORNL hosts a DOE Leadership Computing Facility—home of the Titan supercomputer; one of DOE’s nanoscience centers—the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences; the BioEnergy Science Center—one of DOE’s Energy Research Centers; and the Consortium for Advanced Simulation of Light-Water Reactors, a DOE Innovation Hub.

Company info

Get job alerts

Create a job alert and receive personalized job recommendations straight to your inbox.

Create alert