Associate Director, Government Relations

Ginkgo Bioworks Inc.
Full Time
Remote, Washington, DC area
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Our mission is to make biology easier to engineer. Ginkgo is constructing, editing, and redesigning the living world in order to answer the globe’s growing challenges in health, energy, food, materials, and more. Our bioengineers make use of an in-house automated foundry for designing and building new organisms.

Ginkgo believes that if we are to grow a thriving, sustainable bioeconomy, we must also grow a new market in biosecurity. Our biosecurity and public health initiative, Concentric by Ginkgo, launched a nationwide emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic, providing end-to-end pathogen monitoring services to schools, communities, and travelers. As we continue to scale Concentric, our work is also evolving into new and exciting directions, from global expansion to the integration of new technologies and capabilities, including our Traveler-Based Genomic Surveillance Plan with the CDC.

You will help shape how the U.S. government incorporates biosecurity as a strategic domain in a dynamic and quickly changing landscape. You will work collaboratively with our Business Development, Communications, and Policy departments, as well as with external partners, to represent Ginkgo and develop and execute priorities in support of business development. Ginkgo is a fast-paced environment where you will leverage your strategic thinking, ability to understand complex relationships while avoiding pitfalls, and understanding of the U.S. government; especially Congress, the Department of Defense (DOD), and the Intelligence Community (IC). Your role will be cross-functional and high impact, and critical in shaping how Ginkgo works to bring biosecurity infrastructure to the U.S. and allied nations.


  • Work with the leaders of the U.S. government teams to build strategic priorities for government engagement
  • Track and manage relationships with key U.S. government stakeholders (Congressional national security committees, Executive Office of the President, Federal Agencies – DOD, IC, and HHS preferred)
  • Determine, drive, and execute our legislative strategy across authorizations and appropriations, as well as key congressional education efforts
  • Manage relationships with our federal lobbyists, driving priorities and milestones, clearly communicating goals and objectives and holding teams accountable
  • Represent Ginkgo to external stakeholders, articulating our business, strategy, and value proposition
  • As needed, travel on-site to project and program locations for key meetings and events, especially our headquarters in Boston
  • Work cross-functionally, communicate and collaborate aggressively among fast-moving, matrixed teams
  • Maintain an adaptable mindset as priorities and circumstances evolve, by always be willing to roll up your sleeves and dive into tasks outside of your portfolio
  • Strong and timely follow through on all engagements
  • Contribute to our culture as a dreamer and doer

Minimum Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree in relevant discipline
  • Minimum 6+ years of experience in federal government, politics, and/or communications
  • Direct government, government relations, or political experience required highly preferred
  • Experience managing complex, multi-faceted projects in partnership with multiple vendors, consultants, and internal teams
  • Understanding of the business tech landscape and U.S. tech competition with adversaries

Preferred Capabilities and Experience

  • Previous experience working with DOD, IC, and HHS budget processes and/or Congressional authorizations or appropriations
  • Proven track record of project ownership and results orientation in a team setting with a demonstrated leadership ability
  • Strong communication skills with the ability to determine key messages and brief and prepare C-level leadership
  • Excellent writing to distill complex topics into understandable points and a tactical ability to write crisp talking points, presentations, and pitches
  • Emotional intelligence, an ability to work across organizational boundaries, strong organizational skills, and an ability to multitask
  • Business development, consulting, operations, platform sales experience is helpful

Total compensation for this role is market driven, with a starting salary of $130k+, as well as company stock awards.  Base pay is ultimately determined based on a candidate's skills, expertise, and experience.  We also offer a comprehensive benefits package including medical, dental & vision coverage, health spending accounts, voluntary benefits, leave of absence policies, Employee Assistance Program, 401(k) program with employer contribution, 8 paid holidays in addition to a full-week winter shutdown and unlimited Paid Time Off policy.

To learn more about Ginkgo, visit or check out some curated press below:

We also feel that it’s important to point out the obvious here – there’s a serious lack of diversity in our industry, and that needs to change. Our goal is to help drive that change. Ginkgo is deeply committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in all of its practices, especially when it comes to growing our team. Our culture promotes inclusion and embraces how rewarding it is to work with people from all walks of life.  

We’re developing a powerful biological engineering platform, so we must remain mindful of the many ways our technology can – and will – impact people around the world. We care about how our platform is used, and having a diverse team to build it gives us the best chance that it’s something we’ll be proud of as it continues to grow. Therefore, it’s critical that we incorporate the diverse voices and visions of all those who play a role in the future of biology.

It is the policy of Ginkgo Bioworks to provide equal employment opportunities to all employees, employment applicants, and EOE disability/vet.

Remote Position
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