MTS – Senior Director, Ocean Enterprise Initiative

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The Marine Technology Society (MTS) believes that advancements in the development and use of marine technologies are essential to support responsible and sustainable use of the ocean.  Founded in 1963, we are an international professional society that provides members of industry, government, and academia a common forum for the exchange of information and ideas. Through structured dialogs, expert working groups, technical conferences, and student competitions, our community advances technologies to support the growing ocean economy. Our members are engineers, scientists, technologists, policy makers, and educators on the leading-edge of technology design and application. MTS members work within the full spectrum of ocean and subsea technologies that support sustainable ocean use, ranging from offshore energy to dynamic positioning, ocean robotics to buoys, and many more.

The Role

MTS seeks a full-time Senior Director, Ocean Enterprise Initiative to join our rapidly growing headquarters team. Reporting to the Chief Executive Officer, the Senior Director will serve as the program director and staff lead for the MTS Ocean Enterprise Initiative, which includes the signature program Dialogues with Industry.  Launched in 2022 with partners from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS) with an initial focus on the ocean enterprise, MTS has secured funding to sustain and expand on the Dialogues with Industry program over a four-year period to include additional structured dialogues, community convenings, expert working groups, needs assessments, impact reports, and more that support national and international efforts to:

  • grow a vibrant Ocean Enterprise business cluster,
  • sustain a robust ocean observing system,
  • facilitate data and information provision to support sustainable and balanced growth of offshore energy markets,
  • refine climate resilience themes within NOAAs Ocean-Based Climate Resilience Accelerator Program,
  • ensure climate-ready coastal communities, and
  • support recruitment and training of the next-generation workforce for the blue economy.

The successful incumbent must have critical thinking skills, exceptional people skills, a deep understanding of marine science and technology, the ability to successfully engage and develop trusted and enduring relationships with professionals at the highest levels of industry, government, and academia, and possess a keen understanding of program management, thought leadership, and complex network engagement. The Senior Director can be based anywhere in the US, with a preference for contiguous time zones.

This role includes the following essential functions, and other duties as assigned:

Program Leadership – Lead the member- and partner-driven design, expansion, and delivery of the Ocean Enterprise Initiative. Working closely with program staff and contracted support, lead and ensure the successful delivery of all aspects of the program, including but not limited to soliciting input and feedback on community priorities from across the ocean enterprise, expanding the community of professionals engaged with the program, large- and small-event coordination, facilitating complex and nuanced discussions, preparation of pre- and post-event material and reports, and ensuring timely and accurate drafting of needs assessments, impact reports, repositories, and roadmaps. With the CEO, manage annual budget process with sponsors, grant reporting, and all financial oversight of program resources.  Serve as the staff lead and direct supervisor for one full-time program associate and up to five contracted professionals.

Network Engagement – Cultivate trusted and enduring relationships with ocean and marine technology professionals spanning industry, academia, government, and non-governmental organizations, including at the highest levels of leadership. Ensure consistent and sustained engagement of this stakeholder community in structured dialogues, small group convenings and expert working groups, and large format workshops and conferences. Focus network engagement towards the actionable and timely generation of outputs that drive outcomes on topics as wide ranging as ocean observing systems, coastal and climate resilience technologies, renewable energy systems, and the blue economy workforce. Working closely with MTS colleagues, establish and deepen collaborative relationships between network members and the MTS member community, including professional committees, sections, and MATE regional competitions.

Complex Collaboration – With MTS and partner leadership, develop, implement, assess, and refine strategies to increase community engagement in the program, refine topical priorities for future activities, and ensure tangible impact of program deliverables on short- and long-term MTS and community needs. Serve as the administrative lead for planning and coordination of program activities within MTS, with the global partner planning group, and program sponsors. Work closely with peers and colleagues across MTS, including staff and volunteers, to ensure Ocean Enterprise Initiative outcomes support the MTS mission and growth priorities and that all available and appropriate MTS resources are utilized to support successful Ocean Enterprise Initiative outcomes.

Travel—Travel required up to 25%, including both domestic and international destinations, to represent the Ocean Enterprise Initiative at tradeshows and conferences, to attend MTS staff retreats, to meet with program partners, to support expert working group convenings, and to lead large-format conferences and workshops for participants across the global ocean community.

What we have to offer

  • Salary commensurate with experience and negotiable, expected to be approximately $120,000 per year, with annual bonus opportunities, beginning on or about October 1, 2023.
  • MTS staff work flexible hours and are fully remote.
  • 403(b) retirement match up to 5%, vested immediately.
  • 100% employer paid medical, dental, and vision for you (90% employer paid for dependents).
  • 3 weeks paid annual leave, 2 weeks paid sick leave, 13 paid holidays, and company closure days.
  • $200 per month work from home stipend to help you succeed in a remote environment.


What you bring to the role

  • A master’s degree from an accredited academic institution and at least seven years of full-time program management experience. A combination of education and experience will be considered.
  • Extensive experience working with and a deep network of current professional connections spanning industry, non-governmental organizations (e.g., IOC, WMO, IMO, World Bank), and domestic and international ocean-focused government agencies (e.g., NOAA, US Coast Guard, DFO).
  • A passion for the oceans and a hunger to learn about ideas and developments at the cutting-edge of marine technology.
  • Demonstrated ability to research, analyze, and understand industry market trends.
  • Superior written and verbal communication skills with the ability to draft concise, compelling messages.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage and successfully achieve complex and dynamic program deliverables, including through delegation of activity to full-time staff and contracted support.
  • Proficiency in using database management software (CRM, ASM) and project management tools (e.g., Trello, Teams, MS Project) to manage project, network, and member data and to generate analytics to inform strategy and tactics.
  • Proficiency in using Microsoft and Adobe products and collaboration software.
  • Keen attention to detail as well as demonstrated time- and project-management skills, including an ability to meet multiple deadlines, in a distributed company, by maintaining a high level of organization.
  • Demonstrated ability to collect, interpret, and extract key details from myriad data to inform the refinement of near- and long-range project and program strategies.
  • Pride in your attention to detail, ability to solve problems (sometimes with incomplete information), and desire to inform decisions with the best available data.
  • A current Project Management Professional (PMP) credential, or equivalent, is preferred.

To apply, please email a resume and cover letter that details your experience and ability to lead this signature MTS program to  

Application review will begin August 12, 2023, and continue until filled.