Job Annoucement – Laboratory Director


Please submit resumes by April 21, 2017 to

Citrus Research Board Laboratory Director


JOB TITLE: Laboratory Director


CLASSIFICATION: Regular – 12 month, exempt, at-will

LOCATION: Jerry Dimitman Laboratory, Riverside, CA

WORK HOURS: Typically Monday through Friday; extended days, weekends, travel subject to operational demands

SUMMARY: Re-establish USDA-APHIS-certified high throughput diagnostic laboratory for Huanglongbing detection. Supervise laboratory staff responsible for preparing and analyzing insect and plant samples. Initial emphasis will be placed on Asian citrus psyllid samples.

THIS POSITION VACANCY IS OPEN until Friday, April 21, 2017 or until a suitable candidate is secured.

INTERESTED CANDIDATES should submit an introductory letter, resumé and 3 professional references by email to:
Gary Schulz, President, Citrus Research Board at

The Citrus Research Program is a grower-funded and grower-directed program established in 1968 under the California Marketing Act as a mechanism for enabling the California citrus growers to sponsor and support needed scientific and technical research to further the goals of the California citrus industry. The program is administered by the Citrus Research Board, which is commonly referred to as the CRB.

• Follow USDA-APHIS accepted and prescribed protocols for Huanglongbing diagnosis, including, but not limited to assaying for ‘Candidatus Liberibacter’
• Direct and supervise the optimization of diagnostic protocols
• Coordinate sample flow
• Supervise laboratory personnel to ensure that good laboratory practices and appropriate protocols are followed, and that the output of results is accurate and reliable
• Review, certify, and communicate laboratory results
• Complete the analyses of sample panels for quality control
• Work cooperatively with Geographic Information Specialist (GIS) in database development, data input, and map development
• Schedule work activities for laboratory management staff (coordinate with sample submission)
• Direct and oversee the training of personnel
• Enforce laboratory safety practices
• Work cooperatively with Citrus Research Board staff and other agencies such as the CDFA/CPDPP, USDA (APHIS and ARS), and county pest control districts on regional diagnostic programs
• Report status of laboratory operations to stakeholders and Operations Committee while maintaining strict confidentiality of diagnostic findings
• Create and give presentations to research groups, board members, and stakeholders
• Order necessary laboratory equipment and supplies
• Develop and manage yearly budget
• Perform other duties as assigned by the President

Knowledge of:
– Citrus diseases, causal agents, and their vectors, and citrus pests
– Use of qPCR in diagnosing Huanglongbing
– Other plant disease diagnostic methods such as serology (ELISA)
– Biochemical laboratory procedures
– Laboratory safety including the proper handling of biological and hazardous waste materials
– Agricultural and/or cropping systems
– Managing data through spreadsheets and databases

Skill in:
– Organizational leadership
– Effective communications, including that which requires confidentiality
– Preparing laboratory reagents such as buffers, antibodies, primers, and probes
– Use of laboratory equipment including, but not limited to, spectrophotometers, tissue homogenizers, pH meters, real time and conventional PCR, multi-channel pipets

Ability to:
– Supervise and manage personnel
– Hire, discipline and relieve staff of duties
– Train staff to correctly follow operational protocols
– Take initiative and work without close supervision
– Coordinate the throughput of samples
– Be responsible for final diagnoses that may lead to regulatory action
– Participate in a national quality control review of laboratory operations

A combination of experience and education that provides the required knowledge, skill, and ability is desired. This would typically include:
– Advanced degree (Ph. D.) in plant pathology, plant diseases and insect epidemiology, bacteriology, virology, entomology or related field (experience weighted against degree attained)
– Diagnostic or research laboratory experience (especially using real time PCR methods)
– Supervisory experience (5 or more individuals)
– Experience in the detection of plant pathogens in plant tissue and insect vectors

– Possession of a valid California Driver’s License
– Occasional out-of-town, multi-day business trips may be necessary
– Competent use of standard office equipment such as computers, telephones and photocopiers
– Lifting of boxes weighing up to 35 pounds

The Citrus Research Board is an equal employment opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, age, marital status, religion, disability, sexual orientation, pregnancy, or veteran status or other characteristic protected by the law.

Join the CRB in EXETER at the Annual Post-Harvest Pest Control SEMINAR!

Don’t miss out on CRB’s Annual Post-Harvest Pest Control Seminar! This half-day local seminar for researchers, industry personnel and service company representatives will provide updates on recent developments in post-harvest disease control.

The seminar will start at 8:00 am on Thursday, April 13 and conclude at 12:30 pm.

 Seminar highlights include:

A packinghouse food safety roundtable discussion led by Dr. Mary Lu Arpaia, featuring panelists Kevin Severns, general manger of Orange Cove-Sanger Citrus Association; Franco Bernardi, general manager of Suntreat and all seminar presenters.

Seminar Bonus:  

CRB Researcher Spencer Walse, Ph.D., will present a live fogging demonstration that kills ACP in loaded bins, in the field, before they move to the packinghouse, a possible alternate to wet washing.


CRB Announces Request for Research Proposals for the 2017-18 Fiscal Year

The California Citrus Research Board (CRB) today announced the release of its 2017-2018 Request for Proposals (RFP) for scientific research projects that address the needs of California citrus growers. Key priorities for the organization this year include: research efforts to provide both short- and long-term solutions to huanglongbing (HLB or citrus greening), research that addresses water and labor needs and securing adequate data to support trade activities and deal with barriers to citrus exports.

Make Plans to Attend the 38th Annual Post-Harvest Pest Control Conference!

Please join us for the 38th Annual Post-Harvest Pest Control Conference! This highly technical two-day conference for researchers, industry personnel and service company representatives will provide updates on recent developments in post-harvest disease control.

The conference will kick-off at 8:00 am on Tuesday, April 11 and conclude at 12:30 pm on Wednesday, April 12.

Jim Gorden Elected CRB Chairman

Citrus veteran and pest management pioneer Jim Gorden was elected chairman of the Citrus Research Board (CRB) at a meeting of the Board on February 8, 2017. He will complete the term of Richard Bennett, who stepped down from the helm on January 20. Gorden previously had served as CRB chairman in 2009-11.



CRB Researcher Michelle Cilia Honored with Presidential Early Career Award

Michelle Cilia, Ph.D., California Citrus Research Board (CRB) researcher and research molecular biologist for the United States Department of Agriculture – Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) at the Robert W. Holley Center for Agriculture & Health on the Cornell University campus in Ithaca, New York, has been named a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE).

Photo Caption: Michelle Cilia, Ph.D., working in her lab with graduate student, Annie Kruse. Annie is a Ph.D. candidate at Cornell University working on citrus greening research in the Cilia Lab.

New Mandatory Tarping Regulation Meeting Scheduled for January 9

The Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Program will hold an industry meeting in the Central Valley on January 9 to review the new mandatory tarping requirement recently approved by the California Office of Administrative Law.

The emergency rule requires all bulk citrus loads to be fully tarped during transport regardless of where the load originates from or its destination. The statewide mandatory tarping regulation is in response to a recommendation from the Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Committee to prevent the spread of the Asian citrus psyllid.

The California Department of Food and Agriculture will begin contacting growers, haulers and packers to re-sign compliance agreements that include the tarping requirement. These entities are urged to begin preparations now while they wait to receive new compliance agreements.

To attend the informational meeting, CLICK HERE TO RSVP

 To review a Q&A on the new mandatory tarping rule, CLICK HERE

CRB Launches E-Newsletter Campaign!

The Citrus Research Board (CRB) has launched it’s first edition of their monthly E-Newsletter for December 2016. The E-Newsletter hopes to bring you up-to-date news from the CRB and industry partners. Click on the link below to view the first edition and make sure to subscribe so that the January edition goes directly to your inbox.

Please click HERE for the 2016 December E-Newsletter

HLB External Review – Final Report

The Citrus Research Board (CRB) has released the final report of the HLB External Review, conducted at University of California, Davis on September 6-9, 2016. This report is for use in making future research funding decisions, closing research gaps, encouraging closer collaboration and other purposes as identified in the report.

Please click HERE for more info

CRB 2016-2017 Research – Full Proposal Forms Now Available

2016-2017 Full Proposal Forms

Here you will find the 2016-2017 Full Proposal form, Subcontractor Budget form, and RFP Guidelines.
Full Proposal Form is HERE

Subcontractor Budget is HERE

RFP Guidelines is HERE

If you have any comments or question you may email: or call our office at (559)738-0246.