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Director, Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa

Nominations and applications are sought for the position of Director, Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB), in the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (UHM).

The successful candidate will have a broad, forward-looking view of marine biology, a proven ability to secure research and development funds, and the skills and experience needed to lead an institute that encompasses a wide range of research, education, and service activities. The new Director will possess a blend of entrepreneurial vision, research development and leadership skills. She/he should be sensitive to, and willing to engage with, the culturally diverse communities of Hawaii. The HIMB Director is expected to foster close interactions with other SOEST units, the University of Hawaii System, and the local community.

Nominees and applicants must have a doctoral degree and a distinguished, internationally established reputation in research, skill at establishing community partnerships and donor relations, and a successful history of obtaining programmatic support. Collaborative experience with international institutions, especially in Pacific Rim countries, is desirable. Candidates must also have familiarity with the administration of a research institute or large research program. The Director will oversee a broad range of facilities and programs that lie outside the purview of a conventional academic department, including housing, dive operations, a boat fleet, extensive outreach and community relations, hosting official visitors, summer courses and programs, a protected coral reef reserve, responses to severe weather, as well as the management of construction and infrastructure maintenance.

HIMB is a globally recognized center of innovation for science and technology and place-based education that is fully committed to the University mission of becoming a Native Hawaiian Place of Learning. The Institute’s principal facilities and operations are located on Coconut Island (Moku o Loe), a roughly 28-acre island surrounded by a coral reef in Kaneohe Bay on the windward side of the island of Oahu, about 24 km from the UHM campus. The general research, education, and service programs at HIMB currently encompass basic and applied aspects of tropical marine biology, coral reef ecology, and marine science education including areas of emphasis in the following five sub-disciplines: 1) coral reef biophysical and biogeographical research; 2) coral reef physiology, ecology, evolution, and biodiversity; 3) fisheries research; 4) population-, spatial and behavioral ecology of marine megafauna; and 5) K-20 marine education and community outreach. The institute has an annual operating budget of $4.5 million, $11.3 million in extramural funding, and supports 26 faculty positions, 28 postdocs and up to 36 additional employees.

HIMB has a deep engagement with, and commitment to, its neighborhood partners such as the Windward Community College, the Koolaupoko Hawaiian Civic Club, Koolau Foundation, Paepae O Heeia, Kakoo, Oiwi, and the Kaneohe and Kahaluu Neighborhood Boards. In collaboration with many of these partners, HIMB manages the Heeia National Estuarine Research Reserve, approximately 1,400 acres of estuary and coastal wetland in Kaneohe Bay, including Moku o Loe.

The University of Hawaii at Manoa is a land-, sea-, space-, and sun-grant institution with an enrollment of approximately 20,000 graduate and undergraduate students. In addition to its own faculty and staff, HIMB sponsors affiliated faculty from other University of Hawaii campuses, scientists from federal and state agencies, short-term visiting scientists, and adjunct faculty. The Institute’s Director reports directly to the Dean of SOEST, the largest school within the University of Hawaii System.

Nominations, inquiries, and applications are being accepted for this position. Review of applications will begin on or about March 25, 2024 and will continue until the position is filled.

Salary Range: $136,500 – $236,250. Salary commensurate with qualifications and experience.

  • Job Type: Staff
  • Organization: Hawai'i Institute of Marine Biology
  • Qualifications: MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS Doctorate in the physical or natural sciences or other disciplines related to marine and aquatic biology from an accredited institution. Attained the rank of full professor or have demonstrated a record of comparable professional experience prior to appointment. Three (3) years of professional experience in academic leadership at the level of department chairperson or higher or comparable professional experience. Strong interpersonal communication and leadership skills. Record of distinguished teaching, scholarship, research, publication, and/or professional activity and achievement. Successful fundraising ability and experience. Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with multiple constituencies. Ability to function successfully in an indigenous, multi-ethnic, multi-cultural environment. Demonstrated commitment to consultative and collaborative processes. Demonstrated commitment to the highest ethical and academic standards. DESIRABLE QUALIFICATIONS Knowledge of Hawaii State fiscal and budgetary development. Experience in administration of Marine Facilities. Internationally established reputation in the physical or natural sciences or other disciplines related to marine biology. Demonstrated entrepreneurial vision and experience in relation to a scientific program.
  • How to apply: Apply on website:
  • Location: Kaneohe, HI
  • Web address:

Contact Information

Shimi Rii

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