Job: Science Director

THE POSITION: Science Director

REPORTS TO: Director of Programs

LOCATION: Oakland, California



CEH protects people from toxic chemicals by working with communities, consumers, workers, government, and the private sector to demand and support business practices that are safe for public health and the environment.


All people live, work, learn, and play in healthy environments.


The Center for Environmental Health (“CEH”) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that protects people from toxic chemicals and promotes business practices that are safe for public health and the environment. We stop corporations from exposing people to toxic chemicals, collaborate with responsible businesses and industry leaders, and are committed to inclusive, community-led solutions that address environmental injustices in low-income communities of color.


CEH is an organization of committed, science-driven advocates who work together to keep short-sighted business interests from harming people in the name of profit. We are proud of our work and achieve big wins for people’s health. The organizational culture is one of entrepreneurism and thoughtfully assessed risk taking. CEH believes that to protect the health of all people, we must address the disproportionate health effects of toxic chemicals caused by systemic racism and other social injustices. The movement to eliminate dangerous chemicals must move forward in partnership with Environmental Justice, Reproductive Justice, and other related movements working to address the pressing social justice issues of our day. CEH’s headquarters are in Oakland, and we have a small office in North Carolina’s Triangle Area. This position is located in the Oakland office.

Commitment to JEDI

At CEH, striving for justice, diversity, equity and inclusion (“JEDI”) for all is critical to our mission and values. We know that having a team that is diverse in race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity and expression, ability, sexual orientation, age, background, and opinions — and fostering inclusion among that team — is core to achieving our organizational goals. CEH strives to recruit talent from a diverse pool of candidates and ensure that those professionals it hires are sufficiently supported so that they flourish. The organization wants everyone to not only have a seat at the table, but to know that their presence and input makes the organization stronger.

Learn more about the Center for Environmental Health at


This is a full-time, exempt position.  The Science Director is primarily responsible for ensuring that CEH’s work is credible and based on good science. Much of the work is focused on the scientific basis of CEH’s work to enforce the California Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act (Prop 65): this work often changes corporate behavior nationally.

Position Type:  1.0 FTE. Exempt.

Start date: Position will be open until filled.

Reports to:  Director of Programs


The Science Director will:    

  • Ensure that new Prop 65 litigation has a strong scientific foundation. This includes identifying ideas for new cases and vetting ideas identified by other staff and allies.
  • Ensure a strong scientific foundation for other CEH programs: these currently focus on eliminating toxic chemicals from food and the built environment.  A likely future program is related to the health impacts of petrochemical-based products.
  • Support our policy work, collaborative work with industry, engagement with grassroots partners, and communications.
  • Serve as primary contact for the commercial labs that provide testing for CEH. Ensure that all of the testing process is legally and scientifically defensible.
  • Work closely with CEH attorneys to author confidential memos to the CA attorney general that serve as the scientific foundation of CEH’s Prop 65 litigation.
  • Identify appropriate exposure assessments as needed for successful litigation and/or conduct simple exposure assessments.
  • Assist CEH’s attorneys with any scientific or technical issues that arise in the course of litigation.
  • Provide scientific support for projects monitoring business compliance with existing commitments to CEH.
  • Serve as a media spokesperson.
  • Assist the development team with grant proposals and grant reports as well as sometimes attend meetings and events with donors and funders.


CEH is looking for an experienced scientist who sets high standards for him/herself/themself and for those around him/her/them. The ideal candidate will ensure the scientific integrity of CEH’s work.

  • PhD degree, or equivalent professional experience.
  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience (either work or graduate student experience) in relevant area(s) (e.g. toxicology, biology, chemistry, environmental studies, etc.).
  • Understanding of standard risk assessment practices.
  • Excellent written, verbal, and oral communication skills including the ability to translate complicated science into accessible language.
  • Strong commitment to and understanding of social and environmental justice principles.
  • Experience communicating with diverse groups and working with a multicultural workforce; sensitivity to and appreciation of cultural differences. 
  • Attention to detail.
  • Time management skills.
  • Ability to communicate and liaise effectively with attorneys.
  • Ability to think creatively about sources of exposure to toxic chemicals.
  • Ability to effectively communicate with public audiences, especially through digital and media outlets, and public speaking.
  • Experience with infrared spectroscopy, a plus.

Working Conditions and Job Setting

  • Physical ability to type (or use voice keyboarding software) and use a computer is essential.
  • Infrequent periodic lifting of up to 20 pounds is required.

What to expect from CEH

  • Full benefits, including 401k match (up to 5% of salary), health insurance, vacation, sick time, and paid holiday.
  • A low-ego, high-performance, all-for-one-and-one-for-all culture and flexible work environment.

 Applying for the Job

Write/gather the following materials and send in a single PDF:

  • Cover letter
  • Resume
  • Short writing sample (two pages maximum)
  • Name, affiliation, and contact information for three references

Please merge these materials into a single PDF whose file name includes “Science Director Position” and your surname.

Then email that PDF to: (subject line: Science Director Application).

We acknowledge receipt of all employment applications, and when we decide a candidate is no longer in the running, we notify them. (Note: this sometimes can take a while.)

This position will remain open until we find the right person to fill it. If this posting is still up, go ahead and apply.

CEH is an equal opportunity employer. As an organization committed to diversity and the perspective of all voices, it considers applicants equally of race, gender, gender identity or expression, color, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, age, ability, personal appearance, family responsibilities or national origin.