Assistant Program Manager - Human & Machine Intelligence

Program/Line Mgmt - Other Technical
REDD - Research & Exploratory Development Department

Are you a leader with vision who can identify, develop, and capitalize on the high-impact artificial intelligence and neuroscience research opportunities needed for our nation’s most critical challenges?


Do you have the unique combination of deep technical expertise, compelling vision, and a passion for thoughtful strategy, research with intent, and clear communication?


If so, we're looking for someone like you to join the Research & Exploratory Development Department, here at APL!


The RED Mission Area is actively seeking an Assistant Program Manager for Human & Machine Intelligence. As the APM, you will jointly lead the Human & Machine Intelligence (HMI) program and oversee a diverse and growing portfolio of work in three areas : Augmenting Intelligence (Human-AI teaming and Brain-Computer Interface), AI Assurance (vulnerabilities, defenses, test and evaluation), and fundamentally new AI/ML algorithms, architectures and applications with mission intent (e.g. cognitively- and neurally-inspired approaches, innovation at the intersections of disciplines for impact).


You will partner with the Program Manager to develop and execute the technical strategy and outreach activities to make critical contributions to critical challenges in human and machine intelligence research. You will integrate and coordinate activities across the HMI portfolio. Identify and pursue new business development opportunities in line with Program and Mission Area strategy. Cultivate and sustain relationships with current and potential sponsors. Partner effectively with Line and Program Management across APL to build and sustain a culture of technical excellence, creativity, cross-enterprise collaboration, and interdisciplinary innovation within the portfolio.


The RED Mission Area’s mission is to create and sustain a culture of innovation and technical excellence, providing opportunities to accelerate transformative innovation by exploring new technical areas.


As the Assistant Program Manager, you will:



  • Contribute to development and execution of the vision and strategy for the HMI Program. Identify emerging technical thrusts within the program, seeking subject matter expertise and feedback from SMEs. Seek new insights and derivative efforts to foster future program initiatives. Refine research strategy for new and emerging technical area(s) to support DoD and IC research challenges. Work with the Program Manager to develop and execute a vision and a core set of projects aligned with external DoD and IC challenges. Coordinate internally and closely collaborating with a range of external partners.


Program Leadership:

  • Mentor Thought Leaders, Project Managers and Technical Leads by providing project mentorship, establishing technical direction and assigning responsibilities. Directly communicate capabilities, ideas, progress and key findings to sponsors and the scientific community via presentations, reports and publications. Take ownership of achieving outstanding Sponsor project outcomes. Translate the sponsor’s needs into targeted innovative solutions and a plan of execution. Develop and foster a trusted relationship with sponsor representatives (e.g., technical leaders, contracts personnel). Work with sponsors to identify and support technological gaps critical to program success. Review and finalize program deliverables to ensure they meet sponsor needs. Review and approve APL-generated products (key findings, presentations, reports, manuscripts).


Thought Leadership:

  • Provide thought leadership in conceptualizing and pursuing new research initiatives aligned with APL envisioned futures to support APL’s Research and Exploratory Development (RED) Mission Area. Develop and compose proposals that effectively communicate ACP capabilities, concepts and research approach. Advise the Department and Mission Area leadership on IRAD needs and priorities. Mentor staff toward innovative thought leadership to aid strategic efforts, proposal development, and high impact publications.



  • Assist the PM in leading the development and execution of proposals, task assignments, and related documentation to address sponsor needs and align with APL policies and processes. Review and approve program deliverables to ensure they meet sponsor needs and portfolio standards. Conduct regular project reviews as appropriate to identify areas of risk and develop appropriate mitigation plans in coordination with Sponsor requirements. Ensure Enterprise requirements for quality and safety are met for all Program activities.

You meet our minimum qualifications for the job if you have...


  • A Master's Degree or equivalent in a Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Cognitive Science, Neuroscience, or related technical field.


  • A research and engagement experience in at least one of HMI pillars: Augmenting Intelligence (e.g. Human-AI teaming, Brain-Computer Interface), AI Assurance (e.g. adversarial AI, T&E), or AI/ML Research with mission intent (e.g. contextual intelligence, neurally-inspired algorithms and architectures).


  • 7+ years of relevant professional experience in applied research.


  • A consistent track record of success in developing ideas leading to sponsored research efforts.


  • Strong demonstrated skills in leadership of multi-disciplinary technical teams, organization, and planning.


  • The demonstrated ability to manage performance, cost, and schedule through the full life cycle of a project.


  • Have experience managing projects within quality management system guidelines.


  •  A strategic problem solver with ability to interact with all levels of staff and management including senior leadership of government agencies and academic institutions.


  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.


  • Demonstrated track record of different research leadership roles across technology readiness levels.


  • Hold an active Secret security clearance. If selected, you will be subject to a government security clearance investigation and must meet the requirements for access to classified information. Eligibility requirements include U.S. citizenship.


  • Are able to obtain a TS/SCI level security clearance.


  • Can demonstrate that you are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. To ensure the safety and well-being of the community, APL has established a policy requiring that all staff be vaccinated against COVID-19. All staff members must provide proof of full vaccination or have an approved medical or religious accommodation by their start date.


You'll go above and beyond our minimum requirements if you have...


  • Prior line management experience.


  • Prior project management experience.


  • Hold an active TS/SCI clearance.


  • Special Working Condition: Regular travel to attend Program reviews and technical symposia (up to 20%). 


Why work at APL?

The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) brings world-class expertise to our nation’s most critical defense, security, space and science challenges. While we are dedicated to solving complex challenges and pioneering new technologies, what makes us truly outstanding is our culture. We offer a vibrant, welcoming atmosphere where you can bring your authentic self to work, continue to grow, and build strong connections with inspiring teammates. At APL, we celebrate our differences and encourage creativity and bold, new ideas.




Our employees enjoy generous benefits, including a robust education assistance program, unparalleled retirement contributions, and a healthy work/life balance. APL’s campus is located in the Baltimore-Washington metro area. Learn more about our career opportunities at





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