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Betty Brubach



Government Affairs, Legislative, and Policy Jobs Back to Job Listing

Director of Federal Relations

Washington DC

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has an exciting new opportunity for a Director of Federal Relations to join the Government and Community Relations Office. As the Laboratory’s senior representative located in Washington DC, the Director of Federal Relations will report to the Executive Director of Government and Community Relations, and work closely with the Laboratory Director, scientific, operations, and strategic communications senior leadership, and Government and Community Relations colleagues to develop and implement strategies to best position Berkeley Lab within the federal policy environment. An ideal candidate for this position will possess an enthusiasm for Department of Energy national laboratories and the critical roles they play among industry, academia, research institutions and other science agencies within the nation’s innovation ecosystem. This is an incredible opportunity to represent one of the world’s leading research institutions to key policymakers in the U.S. Congress and within the Administration.

When it was founded nearly 90 years ago in 1931, Berkeley Lab ushered in a new way of doing science based on building large teams of researchers from different fields, along with engineers, mathematicians, machinists, and accountants, to tackle significant scientific challenges together.  This approach has led to Berkeley Lab researchers winning 14 Nobel Prizes and a research portfolio that includes significant and often world-leading programs in physics, chemistry, materials sciences, advanced computing, scientific networking, biosciences, energy and energy technologies, and environmental sciences. “Team Science” remains an integral part of Berkeley Lab’s DNA today.

Berkeley Lab has a dynamic workforce of about 4,000 employees and an annual operating budget of approximately $1.1 billion. The University of California (UC) manages Berkeley Lab for DOE’s Office of Science. The Nature Index ranks Berkeley Lab as fifth in the world in scientific productivity among government research institutions.

What You Will Do:

  • Serve as Berkeley Lab’s primary federal relations official located in Washington DC with responsibility for managing relationships and interactions with federal congressional elected and non-elected officials, Administration officials, and the federal government affairs functions of national trade and business organizations, professional scientific associations, and research universities and their national associations, among other groups. 
  • Work collaboratively with members of the Government and Community Relations team and with colleagues in the Laboratory Directorate, scientific divisions, operations, and in particular strategic communications, to help develop and implement an integrated and cohesive Government and Community Relations strategic plan in support of Berkeley Lab’s major scientific and infrastructure initiatives.
  • Provide counsel to the Executive Director of Government and Community Relations and to Berkeley Lab leaders on federal relations issues important to the Laboratory, keeping abreast of developments, analyzing their impact on the Lab, and recommending responses. Monitor federal legislative activity, scientific advisory boards’ meetings, think tank reports, scientific workshops, and other forums to identify and assist in capturing new opportunities.
  • Ensure that Berkeley Lab leaders, scientists and other Lab employees engage effectively with the federal officials and organizations that are key to advancing Berkeley Lab’s strategic federal relations goals and objectives. Develop strong relationships with key individuals on Capitol Hill and within the Administration, and provide high-level staff support for meetings and other means of engagement by Berkeley Lab leaders.
  • Lead outreach efforts and event planning in Washington, DC to raise policymakers' awareness of Berkeley Lab capabilities and its key role in the nation’s innovation ecosystem.

What is Required:

  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field of study and a minimum of 12 years of related experience; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Experience with the federal budget and appropriations processes and legislative processes, and a proven network of professional contacts in the federal government to support future success in the role.
  • Demonstration of initiative and leadership in building impactful collaborations.
  • Excellent communication skills with the ability to translate key scientific concepts into lay-level language useful to policymakers in DC.
  • Proven ability to gain the confidence and trust of an organization's executive/senior leadership and key external stakeholders.
  • Proven ability to develop and maintain productive working relationships with an array of diverse interests, individuals, and constituencies.
  • Superior written, analytical, and research skills; ability to create, compose, and edit a variety of written materials, including presentations and white papers. 
  • Ability to research, analyze, and synthesize large amounts of data; demonstrated skills in document/information management.


  • For full consideration, please apply by February 28, 2021. 
  • This is a full-time career appointment, exempt (monthly paid) from overtime pay.
  • This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.
  • Work will primarily be performed in Washington DC.

Posted January 28, 2021

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