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Research Scientist, Conservation Seed Bank

Atlanta Botanical Garden
Atlanta, Georgia
Closing date
Feb 21, 2023

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Atlanta Botanical Garden invites applications for the position of Research Scientist, Conservation Seed Bank. They will work under the direction of the Vice President of Conservation & Research to integrate innovative protocols into the Garden’s seed bank programs to support rare species’ survival in the wild. The primary duties of this position will be to:

  1. Oversee Conservation Seed Bank staff and actions to ensure excellence and leadership by the Garden in its work with rare and imperiled species.
  2. Ensure the Coordinated flow of samples (i.e., seeds, spores, pollen) to and from the lab to satisfy grant deliverables, working closely with external partners, the Garden’s Conservation & Research and Living Collections staff.
  3. Collaborate with internal and external colleagues to identify, prioritize, and develop new project funding opportunities, as well as ensure current project deliverables are met.
  4. Write grant proposals and manage grant-supported deliverables and budgets as part of a multi-investigator team.
  5. Disseminate project results through reports, professional meetings, peer-reviewed publications, social media, and other venues.
  6. Interpret and apply literature pertaining to seed storage behavior and viability tests.
  7. Design laboratory experiments and then analyze and report their results.




  • Manage Conservation Seed Bank Staff and support their leadership of germination trials, viability tests (e.g., TZ & FDA, x-ray), and seed cleaning with assistance from laboratory volunteers and technicians. Coordinate collection and curation of seed and pollen, from the field, nursery, and greenhouse. Serve as project lead or collaborator for multiple seed bank focused projects and adapt to changing project needs. Manage annual laboratory budgets and grant-funded project budgets. Lead development of unprecedented species-specific seed bank standard operating procedures focused on imperiled species with  orthodox or unknown storage behavior.. Provide both formal and informal presentations, tours, and written reports of experimentation. Ensure immaculate records are kept for all seed bank samples and their experimental data in the plant records database and spreadsheets. Optimize laboratory workflow for sample storage and viability tests (e.g. germination trial, x-ray, micro-CT, TZ, FDA tests, etc.). Conduct training workshops for national and international collaborators and university students. Ensure CSB staff receive training and maintain best practices in chemical and physical lab inventories maintenance and operation of all lab equipment, and enforcement of rigorous safety protocols for all their direct reports. Ensure CSB staff maintained data in Brahms, Survey123, general databases, and spreadsheets. Participate in both fieldwork and lab work, with occasional long hours; occasional weekend or evening duties may be required.


  • Ph.D. or MSc level degree in ecology, botany, biology, conservation, or related science. Minimum of 4 years of hands-on experience in seed banking Highly organized and adaptable with the ability to work independently in a fast-paced environment with high attention to detail in documenting experiments and laboratory research. High-level critical thinking, analytic and problem-solving skills for troubleshooting protocols. Demonstrated ability to work effectively and cooperatively in a team environment. Demonstrated ability to provide training and support to a wide variety of audiences. Strong written and verbal communication skills. Must have a valid Driver’s License with good driving record


  • Experience working with orchids and imperiled plants. Experience with seed and pollen analysis and tissue culture is highly desired. Experience with data analysis (e.g. ANOVA, multivariate analyses, etc.) and statistical software (e.g., R, JMP, etc.). Certification by the Society of Commercial Seed Technologists (SCST), Certified Viability Technologist (CVT), or Registered Seed Technologist (RST) is highly desirable. Fluency in Spanish.




Visual acuity, manual dexterity, and attention to detail are critical. Ability to spend long periods of time in the laboratory performing complex protocols. Ability to take careful notes and improve laboratory organization. Must be able to lift and carry up to 50 lb.

MENTAL REQUIREMENTS: Excellent organizational and time management skills. The ability to effectively respond to multiple, changing, and often conflicting priorities is essential. Must be able to interact with the general public and co-workers effectively and peer professionals.


These job duties and responsibilities describe the general nature and level of work for employees in this position, but this is not an exclusive or all-inclusive inventory of all duties required for this position.

The Atlanta Botanical Garden requires all staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is required prior to employment.


It is the policy of the Atlanta Botanical Garden to provide equal employment opportunity (EEO) to all persons regardless of age, color, national origin, citizenship status, physical or mental disability, race, religion, creed, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, genetic information, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local law. In addition, reasonable accommodations will be made for qualified individuals with disabilities.

Link to Application:

Please send resume/CV, cover letter, and list of three references.  All files should include applicants last name, document title, and title of the position you are applying for (Smith_Resume_Cons Seed Bank).

Review of Applications will begin immediately. 

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