Associate Vice President for Research Computing

Last updated: August 25, 2023

People walking in front of Drumheller foundtain with the UW Information Technology on the right side.

The Opportunity at a Glance

Position details


UW Information Technology (UW-IT)

Position level:

UW-IT Executive Leadership Team


University of Washington
Seattle, Washington, USA


View the full position description.
Job description

The University of Washington, renowned for its extensive research and academic excellence, invites outstanding candidates to apply for the role of Associate Vice President (AVP) for Research Computing. This position will report directly to the Chief Information Officer (CIO) and will be an integral part of the University of Washington Information Technology (UW-IT) team.

The AVP will guide the strategic and operational direction of the University’s research computing ecosystem, with a focus on High-Performance Computing (HPC), including the University’s own supercomputer, known as Hyak. The AVP will foster cooperation and engagement among institutional technology teams and oversee the staff and services of the Research Computing Division.

The UW, already one of the top research universities in the world with nearly $2 billion in funded research annually, recognizes the critical role of advanced computing in pioneering research. That’s why it has approved a substantial, multi-million-dollar investment for enhancing research computing facilities. As the new AVP for Research Computing, you will be responsible for leading the execution of this significant initiative, allocating resources strategically and driving transformative change to further elevate our research computing infrastructure.

This presents a remarkable opportunity to shape the future of research computing at the UW, ensuring our world-class research, scholarship, and administrative operations have the necessary computational power and capabilities to handle the increasing complexity of big data and computational science. Join us on this thrilling journey as we strive to create a robust, high-performance digital research environment that bolsters our community and aligns with the University’s mission.

Our University

Many people walking through The Quad with a fast facts graphic on the right: $9.5 annual UW budget, 60,000 2022-23 enrollment, 6th global ranking among all universities.Since our founding in 1861, the University of Washington has been a hub for learning, innovation, problem solving and community building. Driven by a mission to serve the greater good, our students, faculty and staff tackle today’s most pressing challenges with courage and creativity, making a difference across Washington state — and around the world.

UW is recognized as one of the most innovative public universities in the world, and consistently ranks among the top public universities as well. We are home to seven Nobel Prize winners, 17 MacArthur Fellows, 189 members of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, and 193 fellows in the American Association for the Advancement of Science. We are also the top recipient of federal research dollars among public universities.

“#10 Best Big Cities in U.S.,”-Condé Nast Traveler, 2022 Reader’s Choice Award

Our faculty and staff are dedicated to our students and their success. This spring, more than 65,000 students applied to become a Husky, one of the largest applicant pools in the school’s history. This makes us a people-driven university, with public service and positive impact deeply ingrained in our culture.

“I’m often asked about my vision for the UW, and my answer has always been simple: to be the top public university in the world in terms of positive impact,” UW President Ana Mari Cauce said.

In this unique setting, the Research Computing position is not simply about information technology and discovery — it is about people. With more than 100,000 students, faculty, and staff across three campuses, medical facilities and global research operations, we are looking for a thinking partner, collaborator and source of innovative ideas who will help us leverage computing power in support of teaching, learning and research across the University’s three campuses.

Our Home

Image of the Seattle skyline with Fast Facts on the right: 4.3 Million metro area population, 8 major sports teams, and 200 mile of shoreline.In the last decade, more than 600,000 people moved to the central Puget Sound metropolitan area — and more than 100,000 of them to Seattle, the hub of one of the most economically powerful regions in North America.

These new residents came for various reasons, many of them attracted by the region’s natural beauty and its significant leadership role in education, technology and medical research. Even the large Silicon Valley tech companies have opened offices in Seattle, going after a large pool of homegrown talent.

The UW plays a significant role in the daily life of the city. Some might say we are a city in our own right, with tens of thousands of people coming and going from campus every day. There are other universities in the metro area, but none is more ingrained in the hearts of our residents than the UW. We are all Huskies who wear purple and gold.

What can you expect from living and working here? An international city with a worldly outlook, a hub of technology respected across the globe. Our region is home to Microsoft, Amazon, T-Mobile USA, Starbucks, Costco, Nordstrom, Alaska Airlines, REI, Zillow and Tableau. Did you know UPS got its start in Seattle? So did Paccar, the truck company, and the legendary Boeing Company, which still builds planes in the region.

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, our neighbor and often partner in research, pioneered the treatment of blood cancers, and has three Nobel laureates. The list goes on and on.

Of course, we are not just about work. The UW encourages a healthy life-work balance, and the beauty of the region provides plenty of opportunities for all kinds of fun activities, from the mountains to the sea. Seattle and its neighboring cities have a rich sports, culture and arts scene, with plenty of live music, theater and festivals all year round.

Commitment to Equity, Diversity & Inclusion

The University of Washington is deeply committed to fostering a diverse, equitable and inclusive culture where everyone in our community can thrive. In this spirit, we acknowledge the unique and enduring connections to the land and waterways of the Coast Salish peoples, including the Duwamish, Suquamish, Snoqualmie and Muckleshoot nations, whose ancestral territories encompass the Puget Sound region.

As we pursue a new person to help us lead research computing, we recognize the importance of cultivating strong, collaborative relationships with tribal governments and honoring their sovereignty.

UW is dedicated to advancing various DEI initiatives that support our community’s unique needs. Some of these initiatives include the Race & Equity Initiative, which engages the entire university community in critical conversations and actions to create a more just and equitable campus; the Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity, which aims to increase diversity, ensure access and promote success for underrepresented students and faculty; and the UW Tribal Relations office, which works to strengthen and sustain the partnerships between the University and tribal nations, Indigenous communities and Native organizations in the region.

The University also offers numerous affinity groups, cultural and resource centers and training programs that focus on fostering a welcoming and inclusive environment for all. The UW’s commitment to DEI also extends to its hiring practices, staff development and decision-making processes.

We actively encourage candidates from diverse backgrounds, including Indigenous peoples and those with experience working with tribal communities, to apply. By embracing diversity and fostering respectful partnerships, we aim to create an enriching environment that supports the University’s mission and upholds our commitment to equity and inclusion for all.

More About UW-IT and Research Computing Division

With about 570 staff and an approximately $150-million annual budget, University of Washington Information Technology (UW-IT) is a dynamic, ever-changing institution — adapting and growing to be an even more customer service-oriented organization so it can better meet the mission and changing needs of the University and its community.

As the central IT organization for the University, UW-IT collaborates with partners across the UW community to advance teaching, learning, innovation, research and discovery. UW-IT delivers outstanding IT services and support to all three campuses, UW medical centers and global research operations. It does so through several divisions, including Research Computing, a crucial supporter in our endeavors to keep the UW a world leader in research.

The division’s experts assist UW researchers in understanding, selecting and using appropriate resources for their large-scale compute, data analysis and backup/archive needs. This includes both High Performance Computing, using an on-campus supercomputer and access to national supercomputing resources, as well as support to UW researchers, faculty and technical staff to evaluate and migrate to cloud computing, including help with the design of cloud-based solutions appropriate for data-intensive science. Beyond the conventional research computing resources, an emerging area of focus for the AVP for Research Computing will be the development and execution of a comprehensive cloud strategy for research.

Over the past several years, UW-IT has built a vast communications network to allow researchers to move massive amounts of data to collaborators across the world in a matter of minutes, and often less; it has struck partnerships with other UW leaders to keep the UW atop R1 Research Institution rankings; it has invested heavily to support Hyak, the UW’s own supercomputer, a magnet for research dollars and a key computing resource for UW researchers and aspiring-student scientists; and has continued to expand the reach of cloud computing to take UW research to new heights.

At the UW, we believe that what you do is instrumental in shaping what the world becomes. Your unique talents, perspective and experiences can help us in our mission to enhance the quality of life and contribute to a better world. We welcome you to apply and become part of our diverse, inclusive, and thriving community.

UW-IT is partnering with Next Generation Leadership Partners on this recruitment. Confidential inquiries should be directed to Phil Goldstein. Click on the button below for more direction on how to email a resume and cover letter to Next Generation.

Apply Now