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Program Assistant, Research and Innovation

REPORTS TO:       Chief Scientific Officer


This position supports the administration of the Research and Innovation Department and the industry’s strategic engagement on research through Almond Board’s committees and working groups. This position will support the departmental operations including serving as the staff coordinator for industry advisory groups, organizing and maintaining the research database, purchasing almond samples for research, tracking the department budget, assisting with organization of research sessions at the annual almond conference, and administrative support for committee and working group meetings.


This position is distinguished by strong organizational skills, ability to handle complex scheduling with internal and external stakeholders, attention to detail, and ability to support colleagues at all levels.  In addition, this position requires strong communication skills to work as a member of the Department of Research & Innovation team, to collaborate across Almond Board departments, and interface with external industry members. This is a non-exempt position based in our Modesto, CA office.


The following duties are typical of those performed by employees in this job title; however, employees may perform other related duties.

  • Organize industry advisory working group and committee meetings, including scheduling, preparation of meeting materials, communication with industry members, and taking meeting notes or minutes.
  • Organize and maintain the Almond Board’s external research database, including management of the review of current database content, redesign of the content organization, and annual maintenance of the content. This includes working with the IT and Communications departments to interface with ABC computing and website platforms. These duties require attention to detail and familiarity with web-based systems but do not require special programming knowledge or skills.  
  • Assist with the planning and conduct of outreach to growers on research activities, including through webinars, printed materials and research sessions.
  • Address public requests for information on Almond Board research and analyses of trends and historical funding of research.
  • Assist with developing PowerPoint presentations on the research program.
  • Track the department budget expenditures to provide quarterly updates. Candidate will be trained on how to generate reports from Almond Board financial software and working with the Finance Department.


Knowledge of:

  • Intermediate knowledge of Microsoft software, including Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook and ability to learn, use and manage SharePoint, databases, and other software.
  • An interest and understanding of agriculture and/or research are strongly preferred.

Skill in:

  • Communicating clearly, both in writing and orally, with diverse audiences.
  • Principles and practices of effective written communications including correspondence, English grammar, spelling and punctuation.
  • Effectively managing several issues and projects at one time in order to meet personal and departmental work deadlines.
  • Interacting and collaborating with a wide array of internal and external stakeholders and groups.


  • Ability to attend offsite meetings and/or agricultural field visits, etc.
  • Occasionally requires ability to perform work-related activities outside of normal business hours, i.e., conference calls to other time zones, ag field visits, meetings/conferences, etc.
  • Demonstrated experience in task management and capacity to use electronic management tools to track tasks.

ILLUSTRATIVE EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE: A typical way to obtain the above knowledge and skill is a combination of education and experience equivalent to:

BS degree, in agricultural or related science preferred, with 1-3 years related experience.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS: The physical abilities involved in the performance of essential duties are:

  • Incumbent will be required to work extended periods of time at a computer;
  • Vision sufficient to read handwrit­ten and printed documents and computer screens;
  • Speech and hearing sufficient to communi­cate by phone and in person;
  • Manual dexterity sufficient to use a variety of office equipment and tools, computer key­boards, and to manipulate papers;
  • May lift up to 30 pounds (15 kilos) and manipulate heavier objects using dollies;
  • Occasional field visits with exposure to noise, dust, odors, and compounds commonly used in a farm/food processing setting, and mechanical equipment in the orchard and processing environment