Executive Director, Program and Portfolio Management, Program Team Leader - Novato, CA | Biospace
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Executive Director, Program and Portfolio Management, Program Team Leader

Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical Inc.

Novato, CA
Posted Date:
Position Type:
Full time
Job Code:
Required Education:
Masters Degree
Areas of Expertise Desired:
Director, Program Manager,

Job Description

Why Join Us?

Ultragenyx is a clinical stage biotechnology company committed to bringing to market novel products for the treatment of rare and ultra-rare diseases with an initial focus on serious debilitating metabolic genetic diseases. Founded in 2010, the company has rapidly built a diverse portfolio of both large and small molecule candidates with the potential to address diseases for which the unmet medical need is high, the biology for treatment is clear, and for which there are no approved therapies.  

Come join our team during this exciting time of growth and opportunities!

We are headquartered in Novato, CA, 25 miles north of San Francisco, and we also have an office in Brisbane, CA, 10 miles south of San Francisco, and Basel, Switzerland.

Position Summary:

Ultragenyx is looking for an experienced Program Team Leader at the Executive Director level with the leadership, passion and creativity to develop great medicines for rare and ultra-rare diseases. The individual will be a self-starter with excellent leadership, communications and project management skills and the ability to build strong rapport across functions. In addition, the successful candidate will be part of the management to help define various organizational level processes.

The successful candidate will be ready for a career defining experience and have the passion to drive a number of therapeutics for devastating diseases to final approval. This position will report to the VP Program and Portfolio Management and will be responsible for leading one to two late stage clinical/commercial programs. Experience in late-stage/commercialization would be critical.

Responsibilities, including but not limited to:

•   Drives the process for the elaboration, maintenance and execution of the integrated development strategy for one or more programs (both small molecules and biologics)
•   Drive decision-making and issues resolution through the governance
•   Develops the operational plan together including realistic timelines, budget and resources planning, risk assessment and contingency planning.
•   Ensures cross-functional alignment and organizational support for the execution of the operational plan by facilitating internal and external stakeholder meetings.
•   Responsible for monitoring and tracking the project against approved timelines and milestones, and ensures adherence to agreed-upon team objectives and deliverables.
•   Manages prioritization of program team activities to enhance program value.
•   Acts as spokesperson for the program will represent program internally and externally.
•   Responsible for comprehensiveness and quality of program information in the internal systems, databases, and communication to Senior Management
•   Expected to identify bottlenecks, surface issues, and proactively drive for their resolution. Leads contingency planning efforts.
•   Leads ad-hoc cross-functional task forces as needed aiming at issue resolution or organization efficiency
•   Accountable for accurate forecasting, tracking and adherence to program budget. (headcount and external costs) by liaising with team members. Challenges assumptions, timelines and expenses on program level.
•   Manages project variance and root cause analysis, develops risk mitigation / issue management plans with the objective to meet the financial targets.
•   Ensures quality, up-to-datedness and accuracy of all program specific planning data (headcount, external costs, timelines)
•   Ensures effective, proactive and open communications, horizontally and vertically, in order to achieve transparency and clarity of program goals, progress and issues.
•   Responsible for high performing and healthy program team
•   Identifies and resolves conflicts at functional team level
•   Create health work team environment
•   Supervise one or more Program Team Leads


•   Masters or Doctoral degree in biology or chemistry
•   15+ years in the life-sciences, pharmaceutical industry
•   At least 8 yrs equivalent multi-/ cross-functional leadership experience
•   Advanced Project Management skills
•   Excellent cross-functional team and relationship building skills
•   Clinical development experience preferred
•   Previous work and leadership experience in international and multidisciplinary drug development teams and broad operational experience with an understanding of drug development process
•   Advanced level of basic science. Experience working in genetic, rare diseases preferred
•   Advanced knowledge of regulatory and business requirements.
•   Understands basic financial aspects, including knowledge of resource planning (headcount and budget) and management
•   Ability to critically and objective interpret and evaluate scientific and competitive, business related information.
•   Expert planning and tracking skills, able to see big picture, well-organized, focused on results, capable of managing multiple projects, excellent time management with respect to priorities and self-management
•   Advanced leadership skills
•   Strong interpersonal and communication skills for bridging between scientific and business participants, for negotiating timelines and for effective collaboration.

Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical is an equal opportunity employer & prohibits unlawful discrimination based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, national origin/ancestry, age, disability, marital and veteran status.