Senior Advisor for Geodesy

Silver Spring, Maryland
Sep 24, 2022
Oct 03, 2022
Full Time

The Senior Advisor for Geodesy represents the NGS within the NOS, and the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on complex geodetic and related sciences matters on interagency, national, and international committees. The incumbent serves as the NOAA lead in the national and interagency effort to develop, maintain, and coordinate the system known as the NSRS, using advanced geodetic, photogrammetric, and remote sensing techniques for the U.S. and its territories, accounting for how the earth changes over time due to earthquakes, subsidence, and other phenomena.

The Senior Advisor for Geodesy will be the principal scientific advisor on geodetic and related sciences, national and international data standards, and the development and consistent adoption of the NSRS. The incumbent will champion the coordination, advocacy, integration, and evaluation of highly technical geodetic aspects and applications of U.S government initiatives.
The Senior Advisor for Geodesy will:
  • Advise the Director for NGS on Major scientific/geodetic issues, collaborations and partnerships which affect NGS and NOAA.
  • Manage and lead projects on new or improved geodetic investigations, applications, and geodetic research studies.
  • Review scientific publications originating within NGS prior to their publication (internal and external).
  • Participate in major decision-making processes and committees of NGS.
  • Collaborate and coordinate with national, inter-governmental organizations (e.g., the United Nations), and international scientific non-governmental organizations (e.g., the International Association of Geodesy) on complex geodetic research, applications, and initiatives.
  • Serve as the Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) Geodetic Control Theme lead for the Nation.
  • Collaborate with federal civilian and DOD agencies (USGS, FEMA, NASA, DOT, USACE, NGA, and others) on a national program designed to ensure that the critical geospatial datasets are aligned to the same coordinate system for maximum synergy.
  • Serve as a subject matter expert to the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM) on the Global Geodetic Reference Frame (GGRF) initiative.
  • Support the alignment of the NSRS to the international standard, the International Terrestrial Reference System (ITRS), and the development of a regional reference system based on the ITRS.
  • Promote critical infrastructure resilience against disruptions to Positioning, Navigation and Timing (PNT) services, through senior-level participation with the Department of Defense, Department of Transportation, and the Department of Commerce's Office of Space Commerce.
  • Ensure the development of the NSRS is consistent with elements presented in the U.S. PNT Strategic Plan.
  • Provide guidance on the acquisition, analysis, and incorporation of satellite-based INSAR data, geodynamic models, CORS-based data, campaign-style GNSS and leveling surveys, and visualization tools.

  • Requirements

    Conditions of Employment

    To meet the minimum requirements for this position, candidates must demonstrate their experience in their narrative responses to the Mandatory Professional/Professional Technical Qualifications (PTQs) questions and all narrative responses must be fully supported within their resume.

    Experience must have been at a sufficiently high level of difficulty to clearly show that the candidate possesses the required professional/technical qualifications set forth below.

    Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

    Professional Technical Qualifications: Applicants must clearly demonstrate in their application materials that they possess technical attributes in the Professional Technical Qualifications (PTQs).

    Key Requirements:
  • Ability to obtain and maintain a TOP SECRET with SCI security clearance.
  • Position is subject to pre-employment background investigation.
  • Public Financial Disclosure (OGE-278 filing within 30 days is required).
  • Position is subject to random drug testing.

  • Qualifications

    To meet the minimum qualifications for this position, you must possess all of the mandatory Professional Technical Qualifications listed below. These qualifications would typically be acquired through education, experience, and training which reflect progressive development and achievement in managing a comprehensive business program in a complex organization. An individual's total experience and education must demonstrate the ability to perform the duties of the position. Applicants must meet all of the qualification requirements by the closing date of this announcement.
    Professional Technical Core Qualifications (PTQs):
    PTQ 1. Extensive knowledge gained through practical experience of the theory and application of advances in any combination of geodesy, physics, gravity, surveying, photogrammetry, reference frames, or geophysics.
    PTQ 2. Experience gained through research or informal investigation to perceive complex spatial geodetic problems and or procedures to implement new technology.
    PTQ 3. Demonstrate ability to solicit and synthesize scientific input from diverse sources to inform and guide the NSRS development and improvements.

    NOTE: Responses to PTQs must not exceed 2 pages per PTQ, for a total of 6 pages.


  • Degree: Geodesy; or 30 semester hours in any combination of geodesy, mathematics, physics, astronomy, engineering science, surveying, geodetic surveying, photogrammetry, or geophysics. The course work must have included differential and integral calculus.
  • Or
  • Combination of education and experience -- course work as shown in A above, plus appropriate experience or additional education.

  • Additional information

    Background Investigation: This position is designated as TOP SECRET and requires that a background investigation be conducted and favorably adjudicated in order to establish security eligibility.

    Public Financial Disclosure: This position is covered under the Ethics in Government Act, which requires comprehensive financial disclosures from employees. The appointee will be required to file a Public Financial Disclosure Report (OGE-278), within 30 days after his/her appointment, and then annually thereafter.

    Qualifications Approval and Probationary Period: Persons newly selected for a career appointment to the Scientific and Professional appointment (SL) will be required to serve a one-year probationary period. If an employee has completed their 1 full year probationary period requirement under the current position they were competitively selected for, and were selected for an SL appointment, they will not need to complete a new probationary period.

    Direct Deposit: All Federal employees are required by P.L. 104-134 to have federal payments made by Direct Deposit.

    Drug Testing: Applicants tentatively selected for employment in any position are subject to designated and/or random pre-employment and employment urinalysis. Applicants who refuse to be tested will be denied employment and/or removed from employment with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce.

    Selective Service: Male applicants born after 12/31/1959, who are required to register with the Selective Service under section 3 of the Military Selective Service Act, must be registered (or must have registered at the time they were required to do so) in order to be eligible for appointment. For more information, visit the SELECTIVE SERVICE SYSTEM web site at

    Veterans' preference: Veterans' preference applies to SL positions and will be applied accordingly: When category rating is used to fill a SL position, each veteran goes to the top of the quality category for which they are qualified. In practice, this means that veterans who qualify for the highest quality category will be the highest-ranked candidates.

    Application materials: The materials you send with your application will not be returned.

    Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: The Department of Commerce provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify Maria J. Gonzalez, the servicing Human Resources Specialist, either by e-mail at or by telephone at 301-628-1879. The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be on a case-by-case basis. TTY users may contact us via the Federal Relay Service, 1-800-877-8339.