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Genetics Program Manager, Wheat

Company: Ardent Mills
Location: Denver
Posted on: May 27, 2023

Job Description:

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Genetic Program Manager - Wheat

Your Role

The Wheat Genetic Program Manager will play an instrumental role in developing and executing the breeding strategies for the Ardent Mills Traditional and Premium Wheat portfolio. In this role, you will lead the wheat breeding program, collaborate with external & internal partners to identify, develop, and deliver the key breeding milestones of all Wheat pipelines which align with Ardent Mills strategic growth objectives, mission and vision. Strong business acumen, solid understanding of the grain science and milling industry, research and plant breeding methods & tools, wheat product quality and end use characteristics are critical for the success of this role.

As a leader driving innovation within Ardent Mills, this individual will partner with cross-functional teams (i.e., Sales, Risk, Finance, Supply Chain, RQT, Operations, Legal, Marketing) to protect and design a 'concept-to-commercialization' path of new product launches that will provide differentiation and add competitive insulation to Ardent Mills. This role will report to Senior Director of R&D.

This role must have excellent interpersonal, relationship building, and communication skills. Must possess the ability to work in a commercial, academic or research setting with customers, public and private breeding partners, and new technology providers independently or as part of a cross-functional team either within Ardent Mills or with key strategic customers.

To succeed, you must be able to:

  • Deliver results in first-time situations by inspiring others and working to earn trust every day.
  • Serve others with understanding, respect, and care.
  • Operate with simplicity, clarity and transparency.
  • Deal with and drive change.
  • Organize, prioritize and own multiple tasks while meeting or exceeding deadlines.
  • Learn and apply new technology, and share your knowledge with others. Above all you will be expected to carry out all your activities with reliability, integrity, compliance and in a safe, environmentally responsible, and efficient manner.

    Your Responsibilities:

    Genetics Lead
    • Lead execution of scientific studies and wheat breeding programs to deliver novel grain-based solutions by identifying opportunities, collaborating with, sponsoring, and directing research with private and public research institutions.
    • Work with R&D Application team and external partners to facilitate development of key technical materials and applicable studies in nutrition, sensory, performance, etc. required to support business development.
      External Ardent Mills Representation
      • Proactively represent Ardent Mills perspectives and interests in professional and scientific organizations by holding a position of influence, advocating goodness of grains and plant-based ingredients and presenting in technical forums.
      • Scout new technologies or findings in Agriculture, Food, and Technology areas; identify potential opportunities to explore and threats to miss; and influence leadership to champion initiatives.
      • Actively cultivates a broad network of contacts both within and outside the organization to support existing and future pipeline, and actively uses network to identify, develop and initiate potential pipeline.
        Project Management
        • Partner with Legal and Commercial Risk teams in creating agreements that comply with corporate IP policies & procedures and developing business case & commercialization path of the wheat traits assigned.
        • Lead and coordinate all technical aspects of programs/projects with external partners and internal stakeholders.
        • Collaborate with internal stakeholders (i.e., Ops, Supply Chain, RQT, Sales, Marketing, Finance), as pipeline projects are ready for commercialization.
        • Set research objectives, produce projects plans, budget, execute, and provide periodic reports on projects.
          Technical Support
          • Comfortable & effective communicator of complex information to cross-functional audiences at various levels within an organization
          • Anticipates customer requirements through regular customer interactions & by staying abreast of trends
          • Promotes a culture of inclusion, collaboration, and teamwork across organizational & industry boundaries
          • Independently prepares & delivers oral and written communication for technical/non-technical audiences
            Essential Skills & Experience
            • Master's degree or higher in Grain Science/Milling Science/Food Science, and Agronomy or plant science, with minimum of 8 years industry experience developing and commercializing wheat-based solutions.
            • Strong technical knowledge (breeding tools, ingredient functionality, product applications and process development).
            • Experience in successfully managing multiple projects and deadlines within a matrixed organization with strict attention to detail and prioritization.
            • Must be reliable, self-motivated, persistent and have the ability to work effectively both independently and within a team.
            • Experience and passion in grains, especially wheat, and other plant-based products.
            • Proven ability to build solid relationships, earn the confidence of internal stakeholders and demonstrate the ability to get results in timely manner with attention to timelines and deadlines.
            • High Integrity, positive attitude, highly motivated, self-starter, and not afraid to take on ambiguous tasks.
            • Demonstrated technical curiosity, creativity, and ability to innovate. Creatively solve technical and operational hurdles to reach a business goal.
            • Must be proactive, flexible, organized, with the ability to handle changing priorities.
            • Strong communication skills, both written and verbal to work effectively with internal customers and external partners. Good to have:
              • Long standing relationships with Wheat trade and scientific based organizations such as NAWG, WQC, NAMA, Cereal & Grains, USDA
                Other considerations:
                • Ability to travel up to 30+% for business.
                • Ardent Mills is headquartered in Denver, CO. Preference for the position to be based in Denver, CO, however, remote is considered. If remote, the successful candidate will be expected to commit to a periodic presence in the Denver HQ office, frequency can be discussed with hiring manager.
                  At Ardent Mills, everyone matters, and everyone has a voice. We are committed to providing an environment of mutual respect where equal opportunities are available to all applicants and team members and the decisions will be based on merit, competence, performance, and business needs. We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, creed, national origin, aboriginality, ancestry, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, physical or mental disability, pregnancy, genetic information, veteran status, age, political affiliation, or any other non-merit characteristic protected by law or not. Together, celebrating our differences, we make Ardent Mills.

                  The preceding position description has been designed to indicate the general nature and essential duties and responsibilities of work performed by employees within this position. It may not contain a comprehensive inventory of all duties, responsibilities, and qualifications required of employees in this position. The description, duties, functions, and responsibilities are subject to change at the discretion of Ardent Mills.

Keywords: Ardent Mills, Denver , Genetics Program Manager, Wheat, Executive , Denver, Colorado

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