Section Supervisor – Printed Circuit Board Manufacturing

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

Do you thrive in a dynamic, high-energy environment?


Are you passionate about building and growing a highly skilled team?


Are you passionate about contributing to Space Exploration and National Security projects and missions?


Would you like join a team that shares knowledge, encourages learning, creativity and career growth?


If so, we're looking for someone like you to join our team at APL.


We are seeking a Section Supervisor to lead the Printed Circuit Board Fabrication Section, in the Advanced Electrical Fabrication Group. This is an outstanding opportunity to apply your passion for electronics fabrication toward sophisticated prototypes and one-of-a kind systems, that advance the scientific knowledge of humankind, safeguard our nation’s security, and contribute to the exploration and research in space.


In this role, you will facilitate the fabrication and technology development of printed circuit boards, flex substrates, and rigid flex, used to solve ambitious problems, whose solutions have an important bearing on national security, military readiness, space exploration, national health, and the advancement of fundamental science or engineering. You will provide technical leadership and professional development for a team of professional and technical support staff. You will collaborate with other Section Supervisors to build and sustain a culture of technical excellence and innovation. The Section Supervisor will lead and perform PCB fabrication functions in a low-volume, high mix environment to meet wide-ranging requirements from quick turn prototypes to space-flight certified electronics. Approximately 20% of the role is leadership and oversight of the section, and 80% consists of direct contributions as an experienced PCB fabrication engineer alongside your staff. 

As a Fabrication Professional, you will:


  • Provide technical direction for approximately 8 staff, working closely with the Group’s Chief Engineer to ensure Section’s long term vision aligns with the Lab’s foreseen Technology Roadmap. Help identify capital equipment and develop staff to maintain technical excellence.


  • Complete hands-on fabrication work including, but not limited to, use of CAM software, various plating processes, lamination, chemical etching, soldermask and silkscreen application, via fill, operation of CNC drilling/routing equipment, and laser via processing.


  • Ensuring equipment and facilities are maintained in operational working order. Complete maintenance as able, guide others on maintenance, work with equipment suppliers on troubleshooting and maintenance, work with internal Lab facilities management, engineers, and support to maintain operations.


  • Ensure the highest standards of technical excellence and quality are met on every project. Participate in key technical efforts; identify emerging opportunities and challenges; review and supervise technical tasks; ensure that staff members are applying best-practices to supported programs, including quality management practices and timely completion of deliverables.

As a Section Supervisor, you will:


  • Establish and promote a climate conducive to intellectual curiosity, creativity, innovation, collaboration, growth, productivity, and respect for others.


  • Section Supervisor is responsible for developing and controlling fabrication schedules and cost estimates, serving as the primary interface to internal customers.


  • Supervise, lead and mentor staff. Recruit, develop, and retain a staff with outstanding technical capabilities. Define expectations, coach performance, conduct performance appraisals, and provide professional development mentorship. Coordinate training, develop and maintain critical staff skills, ensure assignment of work to staff is consistent with staff development and project needs. Identify and develop key talent for future leadership roles.


  • Communicate often and effectively with staff, other section supervisors and group supervisor. Implement laboratory, department and branch policies and procedures. Work with the Group Supervisor and Program Office to develop task assignments and staffing plans.


  • Support new business activities to expand the scope of the programs within the Research and Exploratory Development Business Area and explore related opportunities in relevant business areas. Support sponsor engagement and concept development. Assist or lead activities to acquire new work for the Group, which may include proposal writing and meetings with the potential sponsors.


  • Help build and execute the Group Strategy and Vision. Develop and maintain a vision and strategy for the Section, consistent with the Group, Department, and Lab Program Area strategies and objectives. Develop and maintain effective working relationships across the Laboratory, and with external sponsors.


Special Working Conditions:


Job involves the use of chemistries and maintenance of equipment which could involve lifting up to 50 pounds.

You meet our minimum qualifications for the job if you…

  • Hold a Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent experience in Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Manufacturing engineering, or similar scientific or engineering discipline with 5+ years of relevant professional experience in printed circuit board processing, equipment, and chemistries.


  • Experience with military specifications for rigid and rigid-flex circuits, IPC 6012, and IPC 6013 standards is required.


  • Proven ability to establish relationships and effectively interact with all levels of staff and management, as well as with internal and external customers.


  • Possess skills in organizational leadership and planning. Ability to effectively lead a team of technical staff in solving complex problems.


  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.


  • Demonstrated ability to effectively lead a team of professional and support staff, solving complex problems.


  • Proven track record of successfully mentoring staff and encouraging collaborative relationships within and across organizational boundaries.


  • Are able to obtain Secret level 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.


  • 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...


  • Hold an Advanced degree in electrical engineering, manufacturing engineering or similar scientific or engineering discipline.


  • Possess 10+ years of previous line/functional management, based in PCB industry, with significant hands-on experience in fabrication.


  • Have experience with High Density Interconnect (HDI) fabrication.


  • Have experience with facility and equipment specifications review, implementing capital purchase through commissioning and operational verification.


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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