Oregon Health & Science University

Program Director, CEDAR Clinical Research & Community Engagement

Job Locations US-OR-Portland
Requisition ID
Position Category
Position Type
Regular Full-Time
Job Type
Unclassified Administrative
CEDAR - Knight Cancer Institute
Salary Range
$88,448 - $110,560 annual salary
Monday through Friday
8:30am to 5:00pm
HR Mission
School of Medicine
Drug Testable

Department Overview

Overview: Cancer Early Detection Advanced Research (CEDAR) center is a collaborative institution within the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute. The Knight Cancer Institute, known as one of the pioneers in personalized cancer medicine, is an international leader in research and cancer treatment. At CEDAR our mission is to detect and stop lethal cancers at the earliest stage because early detection saves lives. This is an ambitious goal, one that requires novelty, creativity, and innovation. We are composed of biologists, chemists, biomedical engineers, computationalists, and clinicians conducting groundbreaking translational cancer research to help people maintain a high quality of life and reduce cancer mortality, to create a global early detection community, and to have a positive impact on the Oregon economy.


Position Summary: As Program Director, CEDAR Clinical Research & Community Engagement  you are responsible for building a team and developing and executing a strategy for early detection clinical trials and for working as a liaison between our programs and the community, to ensure that as clinical trials are initiated, we have the ability to serve all of Oregon with those trials.


In this positon you will work closely with the Knight Cancer Institute Community Outreach and Engagement (COE) program which aims to identify and address cancer health disparities among minority and/or underserved populations, including rural, through relevant research, community outreach, engagement and education, and through programs and partnerships. The COE program has developed stakeholder groups for many underserved populations in Oregon as well as developed a network of community research liaisons to interact with the broader Oregon community.


With an eye toward ensuring diversity and inclusion in CEDAR trials, you will provide administrative oversight of all clinical research operations within the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute clinical research early detection program.  Your responsibilities include supporting the CEDAR Chief Medical Officer (CMO) and investigators in scientific program development, program development for clinical research operations and for community engagement and research participant diversity, personnel management for program employees, management of finances associated with clinical research accounts and overall organization budget, and early detection group program development in collaboration with early detection site leaders and investigators.  In support of these activities, you are involved in continual process improvement to further the efficiency and effectiveness of the program and assessment of feasibility and implementation of new projects. 


As Program Director, you are responsible for creating a caring and compassionate patient focused experience and serves as a liaison between investigators and stakeholders within and outside the institution.


You will play a critical role in engaging with communities and leaders within Portland and across to the state to address locally-identified health needs and initiatives in the region with support from the Community Research Hub. In particular, the COE group is working to develop and strengthen stakeholder groups and community engagement from multiple historically underserved populations. As Program Director you we expect you to take a leadership role in establishing connections with the Oregon Hispanic/Latinx community and working collaboratively with COE to develop a stakeholder group to foster engagement between the stakeholder group and the Knight Cancer Institute. In addition, you will utilize the network of liaisons and stakeholder groups previously established by the COE program to engage with other communities across Oregon.


Our Commitment to Diversity: CEDAR is committed to increasing the diversity of the campus community. We at CEDAR are dedicated to promoting inclusion and multiculturalism by having outstanding researchers of diverse backgrounds work together on multiple projects. We encourage high-risk, high-reward research projects because defeating cancer requires out-of-the-box thinking and new perspectives. Our research is milestone driven to ensure that each project is fulfilling its stated goals.


Application Requirements:

  1. Resume or CV
  2. Cover Letter
  3. Diversity Statement The statement should describe your commitment and contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion you have made in your career and/or will make toward greater diversity and antiracism through your work at CEDAR. For more information see here. Length of the statement is at least 2 paragraphs and up to 1 page.  

Function/Duties of Position

Every Knight Cancer employee is expected to embody our guiding principles:

  • We act BOLDLY—Breakthroughs require pushing the boundaries of science, exploring new frontiers, and thinking differently
  • We SUPPORT each other—Respect leads to trust, which leads to excellence
  • We work as a CONNECTED team — We must leverage our collective brain power to conquer cancer because no one individual can do it alone

Duties Include:


Early Detection Clinical Trial Program Development and Management. The individual in this position will work to ensure that underrepresented minorities and individuals residing in rural locations are adequately represented in all activities described below. 

  • Collaborate with CMO and other scientific leaders in defining strategy of early detection group development through evaluation of study portfolio, projecting resourcing needs, providing appropriate information/metrics and other support as requested by the early detection site leaders.  Hold regular meetings with the early detection leaders for strategic discussions.
  • Communicate organizational information to the CMO, Executive Director and team investigators in a timely manner.
  • Evaluate proposed studies to determine feasibility of conduct and ability to adequately resource in collaboration with early detection site leader, study team and finance team. 
  • Represent the program with academic partners and industry collaborators. Working with the Knight Alliance management team, seek out and engage with additional industry partners to foster new relationships and bring new trials to OHSU.
  • Assess trial portfolio strategically to ensure continuity of research options across the early detection program.
  • Hire, train and supervise personnel via direct reports or working with clinical trials manager.
  • Oversee clinical research operations and staff.

Community Engagement

  • In collaboration with Knight COE establish and lead a Hispanic/Latinx community stakeholder group to inform inclusion of this community (and others) in clinical research.
  • Work toward developing (or maintaining) a trusting relationship with community groups underrepresented in research.
  • Collaborate closely with the Knight COE team and community research liaisons to leverage their work with underrepresented communities to bring early detection trials to diverse groups.
  • Serve as liaison between CEDAR and the Knight COE group and ensure CEDAR is connected with the COE group and utilizing resources and networks already developed to further our aims.
  • Serve as liaison between external community groups and both CEDAR and the Knight COE effort. 
  • Act in the role of centralized point of contact for specific community research-related projects (ongoing, new, proposed, etc.) to assure long-term commitments and goals of the communities are supported, local expertise is utilized and efforts are leveraged and not duplicated.
  • Provide updates about project status and needs, successes, and challenges in the community during regular meetings with the Associate Director for COE, other OHSU staff and back to the community as appropriate.
  • Attend important community meetings about project status and needs, successes, and challenges in the region.
  • Collaborate with and leverage OHSU employees in support of community priorities and projects.
  • Facilitate introductions, connecting community researchers or organizations to the relevant research expertise and services for particular projects when applicable; assist in the identification of additional, appropriate funding opportunities.
  • Present findings from community-driven initiatives and projects at conferences.
  • Engage with the CEDAR Health Inequities subcommittee as an expert to help that team create and implement goals around incorporating health inequities research into CEDAR research programs.

Fiscal Management: Responsible for overall oversight of program clinical research finances

  • Collaborate on the development of and oversight of the group operating expenses. Manage expenditures and revenue to budget.  With Directors and Clinical Research Manager, review program accounts and make projections for long-term planning.
  • Conduct protocol review and cost assessment.
  • Oversee the development of appropriate budgets.

Assist with grant and publication preparation:

  • Editing, review, writing of grant applications and Letters of Intent within expertise as needed by the Director.
  • Assist in research for and preparation of review articles, abstracts and manuscript writing according to specific requirements for annual meetings or journals.

Willingness to assume responsibility for tasks that may be outside of the formal job description in order to get the job done. Remains flexible, adapting to the needs of the program or the Director on a daily basis.

Contributes to positive work environment and provides leadership in encouraging such an environment by personal example; maintains the highest ethical standards according to OHSU Policy, including the Code of Conduct; maintains strict confidentiality of all sensitive, confidential, and/or proprietary documents and information.

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Minimum of 5 years clinical research experience including at least 2 years of oncology clinical research experience
  • Minimum of 1 year personnel management experience
  • Ability to prioritize multiple tasks at one time
  • Excellent communication, analytical and organizational skills:  both written and verbal
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team while being collaborative in resolving problems
  • Proficient with Microsoft Office (Excel, Outlook, Access, Word, and PowerPoint) on Window OS. Ability to accurately type 60wpm
  • Working knowledge of Oracle
  • Must have demonstrated excellent customer service skills both on the phone and in person
  • Must possess energy and drive to coordinate multiple projects simultaneously
  • Ability to use tact and diplomacy to maintain effective working relationships

Preferred Qualifications

  • Master’s degree
  • 3 years experience in clinical research-specific management or supervision
  • Knowledge of and experience with early detection of cancer clinical research
  • Strongly prefer experience with community engagement in the Hispanic/Latinx community
  • Fluent in Spanish
  • Working knowledge of Access, EPIC and Oracle
  • Clinical Research Certification (SOCRA, ACRP)

Additional Details

Apply online. Please be sure to include:

  • A Resume or CV
  • A Cover Letter
  • A Diversity Statement. The statement should describe your commitment and contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion you have made in your career and/or will make toward greater diversity and antiracism through your work at CEDAR. For more information see here (this will hyperlink to description). Length of the statement is at least 1 paragraph and up to 1 page.

All are welcome

Oregon Health & Science University values a diverse and culturally competent workforce. We are proud of our commitment to being an equal opportunity, affirmative action organization that does not discriminate against applicants on the basis of any protected class status, including disability status and protected veteran status. Individuals with diverse backgrounds and those who promote diversity and a culture of inclusion are encouraged to apply. To request reasonable accommodation contact the Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Department at 503-494-5148 or aaeo@ohsu.edu.


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