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Call for Interest in the WSSA-USDA Liaision Position

Earlier this year, there was a call for letters of intent from Weed Science Society of America (WSSA) members interested in being considered for the position of WSSA-USDA Liaison.  However, as the time period for submitting the letters may have been too short for members to fully consider applying and there was some confusion as to the nature of the time commitment for the position, we are extending the period for submission of letters until September 1, 2014 or until a suitable candidate is identified.  The full description is listed below.  While the original call for this liaison position mentioned a full-time commitment, we are interested in other forms of time commitment too.  The applicant could travel to Washington, D.C. for one week a month to liaise with USDA-NIFA, or transition from part-time to a longer time commitment.  WSSA is willing to entertain any liaison arrangement that works best for the applicant and asks that the applicant  outline their thoughts on how they would like  to structure the commitment in the letter of intent.

The Weed Science Society of America is seeking a qualified individual to serve as a weed science resource and subject matter expert with the United States Department of Agriculture – National Institute for Food and Agriculture (USDA-NIFA) and to act as a liaison between WSSA members and USDA-NIFA employees.  The person selected will be housed in the Division of Plant Systems-Protection of USDA-NIFA and will work with Michael Fitzner as their direct contact.  Ideally, the individual will be able to locate to Washington, D.C. full-time for 6-12 months to work in the USDA-NIFA office but other arrangements will also be considered as mentioned above.  This individual will interact with USDA-NIFA employees and provide input on a wide range of topics such as current weed management practices, herbicide resistance management, weed biology and ecology, invasive plants, and the role of weed control in land management.

This individual should be willing to learn the USDA-NIFA policies and procedures, become familiar with the USDA-NIFA staff and their roles in the agency, and develop a basic understanding of how USDA-NIFA funding priorities are established and grants awarded.  This individual must be a member of the WSSA, and prepare a quarterly report for the WSSA Board of Directors and for posting on the WSSA website. The WSSA will provide a stipend of up to $25,000 per year for travel and living expenses while working at USDA-NIFA. The applicant is expected to work with their employer to obtain approval to serve in this volunteer capacity as part of their responsibilities or under other arrangements such as a sabbatical.

The application period will end on September 1, 2014 or until a suitable candidate is identified.  The start date is negotiable.

Please send a letter of intent and resume by email to: Lee Van Wychen at [email protected].  If you have questions, please contact Lee, WSSA President Joe DiTomaso at [email protected] or WSSA-EPA Liaison Mike Barrett at [email protected].