Clinical Director, NIDA

Review begins: January 12, 2023

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) seeks a Clinical Director of Intramural Research with creative vision and strong leadership skills to guide and manage its Clinical Research Program. One of the 27 Institutes and Centers (ICs) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), NIDA’s Intramural Research Program (IRP) supports and conducts biomedical research and training at its laboratories and clinical facilities in Baltimore, Maryland, related to all aspects of substance use disorders, comorbid neuropsychiatric disorders, and the development of new treatment modalities with the goal of improving people’s health and quality of life ( 

The Clinical Director oversees the Office of the Clinical Director (OCD) that coordinates, supports and supervises the development, implementation and conduct of NIDA’s intramural human clinical research in direct support to six (6) independent Clinical Investigators (4 tenure-track and 2 senior investigators), Core/Facility Head, and their respective teams. The Clinical Director provides clinical scientific leadership to the investigators and all members of the clinical program and supervises approximately 10 Full-Time Equivalent employees (FTEs). The Clinical Director manages the OCD budget, which is approximately $3 million annually and will be responsible for: identifying emerging areas of focus for clinical research within NIDA IRP; the professional development of staff within their clinical areas of interest, including education and career development; the overall quality of research implementation in the OCD; overseeing the ethical and safe conduct of human subjects research at the NIDA IRP; the process for study development, scientific review and preparation for Institutional Review Board review, including involvement as appropriate by external investigators with expertise appropriate for identified studies; developing and supporting the study management, coordination and ongoing evaluation, to assure maximum effectiveness in the use of resources including verification that resources meet programmatic needs and assuring availability of statistical, computing, and methodological resources for study design and analysis; and managing clinical research and quality contractual arrangements for the program. The incumbent also will have the opportunity to lead their own lab, including training and mentoring research staff and fellows.

The incumbent reports directly to the Director of NIDA and serves as a clinical policy advisor to the Scientific Director, oversees clinical consultative services provided by NIDA intramural clinical staff to the NIH community, serves as the IC’s liaison to key regulatory bodies and the NIH Clinical Center and is expected to participate in the Medical Executive Committee in maintaining patient safety and quality practices. This position is responsible for developing and ensuring compliance with NIH and Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) policies related to the conduct of human subject research, ensuring that the clinical research supports the overall mission of NIDA and the NIH. The OCD under the direction of the Clinical Director, provides the infrastructure needed to promote optimal, safe, and ethical patient care in tandem with optimal, safe, and novel, clinical research. The Clinical Director supports NIH priorities and initiatives to diversify the biomedical workforce and promote a culture of racial, ethnic, disability, and gender equity and inclusivity.

The Clinical Director establishes collaborative relationships with professional colleagues in the external professional community and with community leaders that support the implementation of intramural studies with broad application to high priority health care problems and Institute initiatives. This is to include creating, managing, and developing effective partnerships with vulnerable communities/populations. This could include partnerships with investigators from other institutions to broaden sample size and diversity for intramural studies, and collaboration with professional association leaders in the development of mutual projects. The Clinical Director serves as a role model and provides support for staff involvement and contribution to the profession and specialties in which they are active, through involvement and leadership in professional associations, presentations, publications, and research productivity. 

Required Qualifications
Applicants must possess an M.D. or equivalent degree with a current medical license and be an outstanding scientist and clinical researcher who has a proven track record in managing a clinical research program. Applicants must also have senior-level clinical research experience and be eligible for clinical privileges at the NIH. The candidate must have demonstrated administrative leadership experience running a complex clinical program or institution. The candidate should be a strong communicator with the ability to work collaboratively to solve problems and to make informed decisions.

The ideal candidate must be a recognized, international leader in the addiction field with strong translational and clinical research experience The candidate must have a substantial record of achievement in medicine and research as evidenced by patient-care activities, innovative clinical research, publications, awards, and leadership activities.

Salary is competitive and will be commensurate with the qualifications and experience of the candidate. Full Federal benefits will be provided, including retirement, health and life insurance, long-term care insurance, leave, and a Thrift Savings Plan (401K equivalent). A recruitment or relocation bonus may be available, and relocation expenses may be paid.

Equal Employment Opportunity
Selection for this position will be based solely on merit, with no discrimination for non-merit reasons such as race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, political affiliation, marital status, disability, age, or membership or non-membership in an employee organization. The NIH encourages the application and nomination of qualified women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities.

Standards of Conduct/Financial Disclosure
The NIH inspires public confidence in our science by maintaining high ethical principles. NIH employees are subject to Federal government-wide regulations and statutes, as well as agency-specific regulations described by the NIH Ethics Program. We encourage applicants to review this information. The position is subject to a background investigation and requires the incumbent to complete a public financial disclosure report prior to the effective date of the appointment.

Foreign Education
Applicants who have completed part or all of their education outside of the U.S. must have their foreign education evaluated by an accredited organization to ensure that the foreign education is equivalent to education received in accredited education institutions in the United States. We will only accept the completed foreign education evaluation. For more information on foreign education verification, visit the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) website. Verification must be received prior to the effective date of the appointment.

Reasonable Accommodation
NIH provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you require reasonable accommodations during any part of the application and hiring process, please notify us. The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

How to Apply
Interested candidates should send a letter of interest, including a brief description of experience, CV, bibliography, and a list of five individuals (with contact information) who can serve as references to: Maryann Postorino, Office of Human Resources, NIH at

The NIH and the NIDA are committed to building a diverse workforce and promoting an inclusive environment – so please include in your CV, a description of mentoring and outreach activities in which you have been involved, especially those involving women and persons from racial/ethnic or other underrepresented groups. Applications will be accepted beginning on November 1, 2022, and the position will remain open until filled. The search committee will begin reviewing applications on January 12, 2023.

For further information about the position, please contact the search committee chair: Avindra Nath, M.D., by email:


This page was last updated on Wednesday, February 22, 2023