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Distinguished R&D Staff for Mathematics for National Security

Date: Jun 8, 2021

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 4854 



We are currently seeking qualified applicants for Distinguished R&D Staff in Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s National Security Sciences Directorate to lead strategy, innovation, and research in mathematical foundations for national security. National security challenges are increasingly data-driven and, hence, increasingly dependent on advanced computation and mathematics. The presence of an intelligent, dynamic, and obfuscated adversary is a true game-changer when considering the foundational mathematics behind models, data analytics, statistics, and AI, and this position will be focused on R&D of mathematical approaches that attempt to address this presence. The Distinguished R&D Staff position affords the unique opportunity to grow and lead critical national security missions with a group of talented R&D professionals that enhances Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) as a premier national security sciences organization.  ORNL is interested in investing internal R&D funds for this position to provide the resources and freedom to be creative, science-focused, and strategic in the expansion of this critical thrust area. Success in the growth of this capability and associated programs will create expanded organizational leadership opportunities in secure and resilient AM.




This position will lead state of the art Research and Development (R&D) in the area of mathematics for national security that strategically advances science and technology consistent with ORNL’s aspiration to be the world’s premier R&D institution. ORNL’s National Security Sciences Directorate is performing R&D for a variety of challenges including, cybersecurity, cryptography, geospatial science, resilient/secure AI, identity science, and nuclear nonproliferation detection/prevention, and foundational mathematical techniques are needed that take into account the unique aspects of national security challenges to include adversarial behavior and intent. As such, this position will lead staff and programs and focus on integrating security into the foundational components of advanced manufacturing systems and supply chains.


This position reports to the scientific Group Leader and works closely with NSSD R&D leadership to create and implement a scientific vision; establishes capabilities that enable programs to excel at the forefront of science and technology; performs R&D to advance the field of knowledge and/or technology in one’s respective specialty; sets, implements, and models standards for performance of work consistent with Environment, Safety, Security, Health, and Quality (ESH&Q) requirements and business rules; and ensures a diverse and inclusive work environment where every employee feels safe, heard, and appreciated—a workplace that sets an example for the broader community.


The National Security Sciences Directorate conducts research and development to confront some of the nation’s most difficult security challenges and adversaries.  Our directorate houses S&T leadership in cybersecurity and cyber-physical resiliency, data analytics, geospatial science and technology, nuclear nonproliferation, and high-performance computing for sensitive national security missions. We draw on the Laboratory’s exceptional facilities and work closely with leading researchers in other areas at the lab such as nuclear and chemical sciences and engineering, applied materials, advanced manufacturing, biosecurity, transportation, quantum sciences, and computing.  Our multi-disciplinary research teams are passionate about discovery and innovation as we create science-based solutions to complex security threats that put public safety, national defense, energy infrastructure, and the economy at risk.



Our commitment to diversity:  As we strive to become the world’s premier research institution in the sciences and technologies that underpin critical national security missions, we are committed to creating an inclusive environment that highly values a diverse workforce.  We recognize that a breadth of perspectives, insights, and experiences are necessary to drive the level of innovation and discovery that is mission critical to national security sciences.  Our commitment extends beyond our workforce to the next generation of researchers with STEM education outreach that seeks to engage a diverse range of students.



Major Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Develop a vision and implement a cohesive mathematics for national security research strategy to ensure the success and impact of new and ongoing research programs.
  • Initiate, lead and perform independent and impactful R&D; for example, innovative S&T delivered to sponsors, successful proposals, S&T presentations, professional community engagement, inventions/patents/copyrights, publications as appropriate.
  • Lead program development activities through sponsor engagements, preparation of proposals and white papers, participation in workshops, as well as other program development activities.
  • Develop and implement plans to leverage new opportunities and/or expand existing efforts.
  • Lead by example by exercising scientific integrity in proposing, performing, and communicating research.
  • Lead by example to ensure all work is carried out safely, securely, and in compliance with ORNL policies, standards, and procedures.
  • Exemplify a commitment to excellence in research, operations, and community engagement, and work cooperatively to leverage scientific capabilities across ORNL.
  • Advance the reputation and standing of the group through collaborations, professional society leadership and involvement.



Basic Requirements:

  • Requires a Ph.D. with a minimum of 12 years of relevant experience, an M.S. with a minimum of 16 years of experience, B.S. with 20 years of experience.
  • Experience in the research, development and deployment of one or more of the following: mathematics, statistics, machine learning, modeling, and data analytics for national security applications.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills with a demonstrated leadership ability and a strong commitment to a teaming environment. 
  • Strong written and oral communication skills.  



Preferred Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated track record in national and/or international engagements that seek to sustain and strengthen the mathematics for national security community.
  • Experience working for or collaborating with DOE National Laboratories (or similar R&D organizations). 



Special Requirement:
This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) clearance from the Department of Energy. As such, this position is a Workplace Substance Abuse (WSAP) testing designated position. WSAP positions require passing a pre-placement drug test and participation in an ongoing random drug testing program.  In addition, due the SCI, you may be also be subject to random polygraph testing.


This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

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.

Nearest Major Market: Knoxville