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NDSU Williston Research Extension Center Director with North Dakota State University in Willison, ND

Type of position Administrative
Employer North Dakota State University
Description of Employer North Dakota State University is distinctive as a student-focused, land-grant, research university. Our main campus is located in Fargo, ND with Extension and Research Extension Center locations across the state. The North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station (NDAES) research goals are to find solutions and discover opportunities that enhance the quality of life, sustain food, feed, fiber and fuel production, and protect the great land and resources of North Dakota. NDAES researchers work interactively on applied, basic and advance research that contributes to the mission.

NDSU was the best college in ND according to Money Magazine (September 2018). NDSU was named a 2019 Best Value College by Forbes. Fargo made Livability.com’s top 10 list of cities to find a job and ranked at #11 for best places to live overall.

Location Willison, ND
Description of Location Williston is a city in and the county seat of Williams County, North Dakota, United States. The 2020 census gave its population as 29,160, making Williston the sixth-largest city in North Dakota. The city’s population nearly doubled between 2010 and 2020, due largely to the North Dakota oil boom. For more information please visit https://www.visitwilliston.com/visit/.
Salary Commensurate with qualifications and experience
Benefits NDSU offers a comprehensive benefits package which includes single or family health insurance coverage with premiums paid for by the university – with an effective date for new employees the first of the month following date of hire. Other benefits include, wellness benefits, basic life insurance, retirement plan, tuition waiver, annual leave, EAP, sick leave and holiday pay. Optional benefits include supplemental life, dental, vision, long-term care insurance, flexible spending account, and supplemental retirement plans.
Closing date of competition July 26, 2023
Date position available Immediate
Description of duties

The Director will have administrative responsibility for pursuing excellence in agricultural research and educational programs for the WREC, located near Williston, ND.  The Director will provide leadership, supervision and performance evaluations for Center staff, and facilitate collaboration between the Center staff and other research and Extension professionals in the NDSU system, as well as agencies, organizations, and entities that aid agriculture, related industries, or economic activities in the region. The Director will manage the Center’s budget and coordinate budget development in conjunction with the Director of the NDAES, the WREC advisory board and State Board of Agricultural Research and Education. The Director will provide leadership in obtaining external, competitively funded research and/or educational awards, and develop collaborative projects important to the well-being of rural communities, agricultural production systems and natural resources in northwestern North Dakota. Research effort focuses on dryland and irrigated crop production practices, crop germplasm evaluation and improvement, plant disease control and management, evaluation of new agricultural technologies, cropping systems and crop rotation research, and foundation seedstocks production. This individual will report to the Vice President for Agricultural Affairs.

Qualifications sought

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Earned M.S. in an agricultural discipline closely aligned with the Center’s research programs from an accredited institution.
  • Three years of documented experience in planning, designing, and implementing research or extension programs in a related field that is aligned with the mission of the center such as cropping systems, agronomy, plant pathology, animal science, soil science and natural resource management, precision agriculture, agricultural economics, livestock production systems, sustainable agriculture, or other closely related fields.
  • Demonstrated ability and skills in people management, leadership, team building, effective delegation, and conflict management and resolution.
  • Demonstrated experience managing and supervising employees in a collegial fashion.
  • Demonstrated abilities in fiscal management.
  • Demonstrated success in obtaining extramural funding, and/or experience developing strong collaborative research with other scientists, research extension centers and/or agencies and organizations.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and maintain strong working relationships with diverse agricultural clientele, agri-business, community groups, and local and state policy makers.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing, with scientists, agricultural producers, and other clientele associated with agriculture and natural resources.
  • Demonstrated use of operational business management technology.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Earned Ph.D. in an agricultural discipline closely aligned with the Center’s research programs from an accredited institution.
  • Significant experience and accomplishments in research and extension programming in an area related to applicable research needs for northwestern North Dakota.
  • Demonstrated experience with dryland crop, irrigation, and/or livestock production systems.
  • Extensive and documented experience as a leader of multidisciplinary research and extension programs and a record of accomplishment leading multidisciplinary teams and groups.
  • Demonstrated and effective use of agricultural technology.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage large, complex budgets.
  • Significant record of creativity, initiative, and entrepreneurial approach to garnering funds to support research or extension programming.
  • Ability to work across distance to accomplish research and extension mission with main station and other research extension centers.
  • Demonstrated organizational skills and experience with management of projects and resources.
  • Demonstrated experience or knowledge of crop-based seedstock production practices.


Contact for additional information Dr. Shana Forster, Search Committee Chair
Director, North Central Research Extension Center
[email protected]
Application procedure  
Submit what 1.) Cover letter (two pages maximum), 2.) Curriculum vitae, 3.) Leadership statement (two pages maximum), and 4.) Names and contact information (telephone numbers, postal address, email address) of three professional references.
Submit to Applications are accepted online only at https://jobs.ndsu.edu. Create an account, search for opening, and create and submit your application when prompted.