Director, Division of Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI)

Directorate: Engineering (ENG)
Job Type:
Senior Executive/Leadership
Appointment Type:
Temporary / Rotator
This job is open to the public

Application timeline

Date Posted:
Closing date: Open until filled
Formal consideration of interested applicants will begin and will continue until a selection is made.

Position Summary

The Directorate for Engineering (ENG) announces a nationwide search to fill the position of Director, Division of Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI) through an assignment under the Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA).  Formal consideration of interested applicants will begin 06/17/2022 and continue until a selection is made.

The CMMI Division enables a globally competitive and sustainable future for the nation by supporting fundamental research to advance the frontiers of knowledge in the areas related to designing, building, and securing the nation's critical infrastructure, manufacturing and service enterprise. CMMI also invests in engineering education to foster a world-class engineering workforce. CMMI programs are organized into five clusters: Advanced Manufacturing; Dynamics, Controls and Cognition; Engineering for Civil Infrastructure; Mechanics & Engineering Materials; and Operations and Design. These clusters will provide the knowledge to design and secure the nation's infrastructure, and to grow our nation's wealth- producing enterprises. The division's portfolio also supports the Natural Hazards Engineering Research Infrastructure (NHERI). NHERI is a
system of 12 facilities located at universities across the United States, which work together through a central coordination office.

CMMI's design, manufacture and service portfolio is the largest of the federal agencies that support fundamental research and discovery that is not product or mission driven. This has led to early investments in robotic systems, future manufacturing, complex socio-technical systems design and operations, and the understanding and creation of advanced engineering materials that enable everything from next generation aircraft to engineered processes for growing tissue.


Position Description

The Division Director serves as a member of the Directorate for Engineering leadership team, directs activities of the CMMI Division, and serves as the Foundation’s principal spokesperson in the areas supported by the Division. The incumbent assesses needs and trends in the areas supported by the CMMI Division, implements overall strategic planning and policy setting, justifies budget estimates, balances program needs, identifies and allocates resources, oversees the timely evaluation of proposals and recommendations for awards and declinations, and fosters partnerships with other Divisions, Directorates, Federal agencies, the industrial sector scientific organizations and the academic community. The Division Director has managerial and oversight responsibilities for the effective use of division staff and resources in meeting organizational goals and objectives. 

The position recruited under this announcement will be filled under the following appointment option(s):

Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) Assignment: Individuals eligible for an IPA assignment with a Federal agency include employees of State and local government agencies or institutions of higher education, Indian tribal governments, and other eligible organizations in instances where such assignments would be of mutual benefit to the organizations involved. Initial assignments under IPA provisions may be made for a period up to two years, with a possible extension for up to an additional two-year period. The individual remains an employee of the home institution and NSF provides the negotiated funding toward the assignee's salary and benefits. Initial IPA assignments are made for a one-year period and may be extended by mutual agreement. 

It is NSF policy that NSF personnel employed at or IPAs detailed to NSF are not permitted to participate in foreign government talent recruitment programs.  Failure to comply with this NSF policy could result in disciplinary action up to and including removal from Federal Service or termination of an IPA assignment and referral to the Office of Inspector General.

Applications will be accepted from U.S. Citizens. Recent changes in Federal Appropriations Law require Non-Citizens to meet certain eligibility criteria to be considered. Therefore, Non-Citizens must certify eligibility by signing and attaching this Citizenship Affidavit to their application. Non-Citizens who do not provide the affidavit at the time of application will not be considered eligible. Non-Citizens are not eligible for positions requiring a security clearance.

To ensure compliance with an applicable preliminary nationwide injunction, which may be supplemented, modified, or vacated, depending on the course of ongoing litigation, the Federal Government will take no action to implement or enforce the COVID-19 vaccination requirement pursuant to Executive Order 14043 on Requiring Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination for Federal Employees. Federal agencies may request information regarding the vaccination status of selected applicants for the purposes of implementing other workplace safety protocols, such as protocols related to masking, physical distancing, testing, travel, and quarantine.

The successful candidate will possess an established record of significant achievement in research, administration, and increasing leadership responsibility in academe, industry or government.  Additionally, the Division Director must be experienced and competent in technical, financial and administrative management.  The incumbent must work well with people, be an effective communicator, and be committed to continuously develop the diversity of talents and skills of the team.

The Qualification Requirements of the position are listed below:

Executive/Managerial Requirements

  1. Leading Change. Demonstrated ability to bring about strategic change, both within and outside the organization, to meet organizational goals.  Includes the ability to establish an organizational vision and to implement it in a continuously changing environment.
  1. Leading People. Demonstrated ability to lead people toward meeting the organization’s vision, mission, and goals.  Includes the ability to provide an inclusive workplace that fosters the development of others, facilitates cooperation and teamwork, and supports constructive resolution of conflicts.
  1. Results-Driven Leadership. Demonstrated ability to meet organizational goals and customer expectations.  Includes the ability to make decisions that produce high-quality results by applying technical knowledge, analyzing problems, and calculating risks.
  1. Business Acumen. Demonstrated ability to manage human, financial, and information resources strategically.   
  1. Building Coalitions. Demonstrated ability to build coalitions internally and with other Federal agencies, State and local governments, nonprofit and private sector organizations, foreign governments, or international organizations to achieve common goals.

Professional/Technical Requirements

  1. Education strongly preferred at the Ph.D. level or equivalent professional experience or a combination of education and equivalent experience in civil, mechanical, material, or industrial engineering or a closely related field in engineering and physical sciences.
  2. Substantial contributions and strong evidence of engineering research administration as evidenced in publications and innovative leadership in the academic research community and/or professional leadership and awards.
  3. Demonstrated broad knowledge of diverse fields of engineering research and demonstrated ability to relate different fields of engineering and science to research problems critical to technological advancement.
  4. Knowledge of grant and contract administration, fiscal management, and budget preparation with experience in engineering research support.

Please submit a current CV accompanied by a cover letter or supplemental statement that addresses the qualification requirements of the position.  Applications should be transmitted electronically to

General professional inquiries should be directed to:

Dr. Jeanne VanBriesen, Division Director, ENG/CBET

Search Committee Chair


Apply by Email