Senior Board Director - Space Studies Board

Washington D.C.
Feb 02, 2018
Mar 17, 2018
Executive, Director
Full Time

The National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and National Academy of Medicine work together as the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation and conduct other activities to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions. The National Academies also encourage education and research, recognize outstanding contributions to knowledge, and increase public understanding in matters of science, engineering, and medicine.


The mission of the Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences (DEPS) is to provide independent and authoritative science, technology, and engineering and related policy advice to the federal government and to the nation and to promote communications between the science and technology community, the federal government, and the interested public. The DEPS portfolio of work focuses on the role of science and technology developments in areas of national security, space and aerospace, energy, infrastructure, manufacturing, materials, physics, astronomy, mathematics and operations research, information technology, and telecommunications. In support of these goals the Division Committee will articulate intellectual and strategic goals for the Division, with particular attention to the promotion of intra- and inter-division collaborations to capture interdisciplinary opportunities that are emerging or likely to emerge; ensure the quality of the Division’s work, perform strategic reviews of the Division’s boards, and approve board members; and provide direction on emerging issues, and review the Division’s structure and operational ability to pursue these issues. The Committee will also annually review the Division’s activities, reports, successes, and challenges, and articulate its vision of how the Division should evolve in the future. 


The Space Studies Board (SSB) was established in 1958 to serve as the focus of the interests and responsibilities in space research for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The SSB provides an independent, authoritative forum for information and advice on all aspects of space science and applications, and it serves as the focal point within the National Academies for activities on space research. It oversees advisory studies and program assessments, facilitates international research coordination, and promotes communications on space science and science policy between the research community, the federal government, and the interested public. The SSB also serves as the U.S. National Committee for the International Council for Science Committee on Space Research (COSPAR).


The Aeronautics and Space Engineering Board (ASEB) was established in 1967 “to focus talents and energies of the engineering community on significant aerospace policies and programs." In undertaking its responsibility, the ASEB oversees ad hoc committees that recommend priorities and procedures for achieving aerospace engineering objectives, and offers a way to bring engineering and other related expertise to bear on aerospace issues of national importance. Among these issues are: research and development aspects of the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen); NASA’s aeronautics research program; national aeronautics R&D policy and its implementation; space policy and programs, with a focus on human spaceflight and space operations; commercial space activities; and other aerospace engineering topics.




The Senior Board Director is responsible for the development, implementation, and ongoing management and evaluation of the Space Studies Board and the Aeronautics and Space Engineering Board activities.  Develops the overall budgets for the two boards, including staffing requirements and ensures that each study or activity meets its stated objectives and supports the mission of the organization.  Maintains internal and external relations.  Oversees the assembling of committees, in the conduct of their work and/or consensus building process.  Responds to requests for studies, negotiating the scope of work and budget, and independently develops programs/projects and negotiates funding with sponsors.  Significantly impacts the advancement of science or policy through the successful conduct of National Academies’ programs and activities.




1. In consultation with the chairs and members of both boards, develops and maintains a balanced, high quality portfolio of projects/programs.  Establishes a vision and working strategy for studies and activities conducted within the programs/boards. 


2. Plans, conducts, and directs work on projects/programs.  Oversees the management of projects, assembles or oversees the assembling of board, committees, and/or study panels and provides oversight and guidance to the conduct of their work. 


3. Provides leadership and mentors employees.  Trains and develops employees to successfully perform current responsibilities and encourages development of staff for future roles.  Forms effective teams and cultivates a work environment that fosters team work.  Interprets and ensures consistent application of organizational policies.  Initiates personnel actions, including performance and compensation reviews and disciplinary actions. 


4. Maintains communication and productive work relationships with program volunteers.  Sets agendas and oversees meeting arrangements.  Oversees quality assurance efforts. 

5. Oversees financial management of the units.  Participates in business planning, conducts status meetings, coordinates logistical issues, and implements planning, scheduling, and procedural changes.


6. Responsible for program/project development.  Maintains current and develops new relationships with prospective sponsors and other external contacts. 


7. Responds to requests for studies/projects, negotiating scope of work and budget, and independently develops high-impact programs/projects and negotiates funding with sponsors.  Performs fundraising activities.  Prepares proposals.  Oversees management of contracts. 


8. Oversees the report process during writing, report review, and release, if applicable. 


9. Oversees outreach activities, including dissemination.  Conducts speaking engagements, handles press calls, participates in outside committees, and represents programs/boards at internal and external meetings.




Ability to solve intellectual problems that reflect substantial variety and complexity. Ability to serve as a resource to others in the resolution of complex problems and issues. Ability to operate with substantial latitude for independent judgment and action. Ability to negotiate funding. Ability to train and develop staff. Ability to work successfully in a team environment and to form and maintain effective teams. Experience working in complex environments with a high degree of organizational effectiveness. Ability to develop relationships with co-workers and employees in other National Academies’ departments through effective communication. Excellent communication skills with a proven ability to effectively interact with all levels of employees. Understanding of the National Academies’ mission and culture.

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