Job: Assistant Business Controller

Department: DPB – Plant Biology

Salary: Competitive

Location: Stanford, CA

Position Summary:

The Carnegie Institution for Science is a non-profit, world-class research institution. Carnegie’s Plant Biology and Global Ecology departments are located on Stanford University campus, California. Website:  and 

The Assistant Controller is responsible for the departments’ financial management, purchasing, and administrative business. The position takes part in the general management of the department, carries out financial and administrative programs and activities that support the scientific mission and helps assure compliance with legal, regulatory, and fiduciary requirements. The Assistant Controller has a dual reporting role, reporting to the Directors as well as the Controller who is offsite at the Observatories campus. This position also collaborates closely with the central Headquarters Administrative Office (HQ) in Washington DC and responds to guidance from HQ regarding Administration and Finance concerning institution-wide matters.

Job Responsibilities Include:

  1. Carries out the departments’ financial and accounting operations, including disbursements and the recording of transactions. In carrying out these functions, assures compliance with applicable requirements, including Carnegie policies, accounting standards, and federal requirements.
  2. Supervises an administrative and operational staff of approximately 4 finance and accounting professionals.
  3. Maintains the department’s accounting and financial records in accordance with GAAP and federal circulars applicable to Carnegie. Reviews monthly financial reports concerning the department with the financial analyst and grants manager before distribution of reports to the Directors, support staff, and scientific staff.
  4. Manage and oversee quarter end and year end close. Prepare, review, and or approve monthly invoices, grant reports, quarterly reconciliations, journal entries among other reports.
  5. Provides management and fiscal services to faculty in both departments, oversees departmental purchasing to assure compliance with Institutional policies and federal requirements. Assists faculty with major procurements.
  6. Maintains appropriate records and information at the department level that supports the above functions, is accountable for meeting performance and other standards in the financial and administrative areas as set forth by the Institution and department Directors.


  • Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting, Finance or related field
  • Excellent knowledge of GAAP
  • 8+ years of progressive accounting experience, ideally in the non-profit industry

Position details

This is a full-time position with a competitive annual salary and benefits. The lab is located at the Carnegie Institution on the Stanford University campus. Carnegie researchers have access to Stanford facilities. Stanford campus is a vibrant community embedded in the San Francisco Bay area, with opportunities for extensive social and scientific interactions. The initial position will be for one year with potential renewal of up to five years depending upon performance.

Additional information:

The Department of Plant Biology of the Carnegie Institution for Science (formerly known as the Carnegie Institution of Washington) is a private U.S.-based non-profit endowment, located on the campus of Stanford University since 1928. Andrew Carnegie founded the Carnegie Institution of Washington in 1902 as an organization for scientific discovery to serve as a home to exceptional individuals – men and women – with imagination and extraordinary dedication capable of working at the cutting edge of their fields. Today, Carnegie scientists work in six scientific departments on the west and east coasts and at the Las Campanas Observatory in Chile. Carnegie investigators have made key discoveries in plant biology, including early experiments of local adaptation (Clausen, Keck, Hiesey), the discovery of transposable elements (McClintock), plant ecophysiology at global scales (Berry, Field), the discovery of key photosynthesis and phototropism genes (Grossman, Briggs), or The Arabidopsis Information Resource TAIR (Rhee, Somerville). The Department of Plant Biology ( has state-of-the-art facilities for molecular genetic studies of plants, greenhouses and field sites, and computer resources. The lab is co-affiliated with the Carnegie Department of Global Ecology (, the Department of Biology at Stanford University ( and with the center of Computational, Evolutionary and Human Genetics ( The ideal candidate would become an active member of this community and would strengthen collaborative connections with grad students, postdocs, and faculty members across campus.


Informal inquiries about this position can be made by emailing Clare Tuma, HR Business Partner at To be formally considered, please include: (1) a cover letter, (2) CV, and (3) three referees whom we can ask for letters of recommendation.

Equal Opportunity Employer:

Carnegie Institution for Science is an equal opportunity employer.  We highly encourage candidates from underrepresented gender and ethnic groups to apply. All applicants will receive consideration of employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, veteran status or any other characteristics protected by law.