Ocean Associates Inc. La Jolla, California
Job Type Paid permanent

Molecular Geneticist - Aquaculture Science Advisement 

Ocean Associates, Inc. (OAI) is seeking a Molecular Geneticist to provide support to the NOAA Southwest Fisheries Science Center’s Genetics, Physiology and Aquaculture program (SWFSC-GPA)). OAI supplies personnel support services on contract to government and industry clients for marine fisheries and protected species.  This position will support the SWFSC-GPA and NOAA’s Office of Aquaculture with science synthesis, communication, and specific genetics expertise in a wide range of science, management, and international issues pertaining to marine aquaculture. 


The Individual shall provide the following services:

  • Provide advice on answering questions and concerns regarding the genetic effects of escaped or intentionally released fish on wild populations. 
  • Evaluate and be a resource for the OMEGA model to help move it from development to operation, and to answer specific questions related to industry management and regulation. The purpose of the OMEGA model is to use the best available science to understand the genetic effects of escaped fish on wild populations and the implications in terms of industry management, economic viability of aquaculture operations, and policy making. This involves finding a defensible solution for an approach to broodstock management that is also environmentally sustainable in terms of presenting a risk to wild fish that is acceptably low. 
  • Develop case studies for candidate aquaculture species. Provide guidance on populating model scenarios with operations assumptions and available data for wild populations. Advise the team on all aspects of aquaculture operations and ecological and genetic components of model. Understand and apply the available data for candidate aquaculture species and, more broadly, available research to inform model assumptions. 
  • Review and prepare documents and other materials related to the implementing aquaculture aspects of the National Ocean Policy. 

Other Duties Include:

  • Produce a report documenting analyses performed, model performance, and suggested actions.
  • Produce a report documenting case study results and conclusions from a sensitivity analysis of model scenarios to identify priority areas for further research.
  • Produce a report including summary of reviewed and prepared documents. 

Travel is anticipated 

Average estimated hours per week are 20 to 25.

Start Date: October 1, 2018 

Salary and Benefits: Commensurate with experience. Comprehensive benefits package.


Selected individual(s) must have the following minimum qualifications:

  • A Master’s degree from an accredited college or university with a clearly in a related field of study with emphasis in molecular biology, population genetics, evolutionary biology, forensic science or a clearly related field and a minimum of four (4) years demonstrated field capability and related directly to the individual task order. Three (3) years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a Ph.D. or Ph.D. from an accredited college or university with a major clearly in a related field of study with emphasis in molecular biology population genetics, evolutionary biology, forensic science or a clearly related field may be substituted for two (2) years of the required experience. 

Additional required qualifications include:

  • Thorough knowledge of US marine aquaculture policy as it pertains to genetics of finfish and invertebrates.
  • Expertise in study design and application of the Offshore Marine Escapes Genetics Assessment (OMEGA) model.
  • Expertise in population genetics of marine fish and invertebrates.
  • Expertise is developing genetic management protocols for fish and invertebrate aquaculture. 

Additional preferred qualifications include: 

  • Experience participating in multi-agency marine species recovery planning
  • Expertise in completing scientific analyses and publishing results in scientific journals
  • Experience in presenting results in public forums  


If you are interested in being considered for this position, you MUST APPLY THROUGH OUR WEBSITE ONLY. Go to OCEANASSOC.COM, click on Now Hiring, find the position you wish to apply for, click the 'For More Information' link for that position, follow instructions on the page to apply. (no emails)

Only qualified applicants that meet minimum experience or background requirements stated above need apply. When applying for this position you will be asked to upload your resume at the end of this online application.

Applicants should submit a resume that includes the following:

  • Cover letter that briefly describes how you meet the required and preferred qualifications listed.
  • Work history for past 10 years or since last full-time education.
  • Education.
  • Previous experience or training with similar requirements.
  • Three professional references.  
  • Include your name in the document file name.
  • Upload your resume in readable, not scanned, PDF or Word format (PDF is preferred).  

In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States, complete the required employment eligibility verification document form upon hire, and successfully complete a federal government background check.  Ocean Associates Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of any status or condition protected by applicable federal or state law. 

OAI is a government contractor and is required by law to invite applicants to self-identify their race, gender, national origin, disability status and veteran status. OAI is required to use the information it collects as part of its future affirmative action efforts in hiring. The information is collected anonymously by computer and is not connected to your application. You will see a place to check certain boxes in OAI's online application. Even though the information is anonymous, self-identification is voluntary. You can always check the box that says you decline to self-identify. 

Note:  If you are not selected, your materials may be retained for present or future opportunities. We may use your resume in bidding on a project and if we are awarded the work we will contact you before seeking further applicants. If you do not wish us to retain or use your resume to seek work for you, please let us know in the "Notes" section on the second page of the online application.

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.