Senior Scientist, Automation at Kingdom Supercultures (S20)
New foods with microbes
Remote
Full-time
About Kingdom Supercultures

Kingdom Supercultures makes it easy for food manufacturers to create exciting new products. We design new microbial cultures ("Supercultures") that power the production of entirely new kinds of foods that don't exist today.

Many of the most popular foods we eat are made by microbial cultures - chocolate, cheese, kombucha, beer, yogurt, and more. Our team is building an expansive scientific platform that will transform the process of new food invention from the hundreds of years it took our ancestors for each new food into a repeatable engineering endeavor that we can accomplish in the span of months. Our ultimate goal is to harness the power of biology to make our food system more natural, healthy, and sustainable.

About the role

OVERVIEW

Kingdom Supercultures designs and supplies a new class of natural ingredients (“Supercultures”) that make it easy for food, beverage, and personal care manufacturers to create exciting products that are healthier and more sustainable.  These Supercultures are composed entirely of microbial strains found naturally in food, which Kingdom rearranges into new combinations with exciting new functionalities.  Manufacturers then use these Supercultures to create plant-based yogurts and cheeses that actually taste like dairy, functional ingredients, and personal care products without artificial chemicals.  Our vision is to replace artificial chemicals and GMOs with natural Supercultures as the ingredient backbone of the modern consumer packaged goods industry. 

We’re looking for a Senior Automation Scientist to join our founding scientific team of biochemists, bioengineers, biologists, and computational scientists. This individual will build out Kingdom’s laboratory automation capacities and will use this automation to rapidly scale experimental throughput and Superculture discovery. Strong candidates will be excited about blending their deep technical experience with a passion for our scientific mission as well as rapidly accelerating their professional growth.

We’re in active R&D projects with some of the largest and most innovative CPG manufacturers in food, beverage, and personal care.  In addition, we’re supplying cultures to Eleven Madison Park (rated as one of the top restaurants in the world) to enable their new plant-based menu, and are already powering products on store shelves nationally.  We’ve raised nearly $30M in funding from top investors including Shine, Valor, Lux, Sequoia, and Y-Combinator, and are still in the early stages of our journey.  This is a full-time, in-person role at our state-of-the-art HQ in Brooklyn, NY.

RESPONSIBILITIES

In this role, you will: 

  • Contribute to ongoing automation operations in a state-of-the-art microbiology lab (including but not limited to, liquid-handling robots, automation workcells, automated freezers, colony picking, and microbial strain propagation)

  • Design, optimize and validate workflows for consistency, accuracy, and latency to result in clear, detailed SOPs that are regularly reassessed and improved, as needed   

  • Analyze workflow outputs with high scientific rigor, through the use of modern, sophisticated statistics and data science approaches

  • Present results clearly in both written and verbal form to the greater team to raise the collective knowledge of Kingdom

  • Identify and close gaps in automation capacities by proactively assessing the needs of the Kingdom team and acquiring new instruments to fill technology gaps  

  • Act as a primary point of contact for troubleshooting automation equipment and protocols 

KEY QUALITIES

Core competencies

  • Experience programming, operating, and troubleshooting robotic liquid handlers and other laboratory automation equipment

  • Demonstrated experience designing, implementing, and analyzing high-throughput screening and automation campaigns

  • Track record of creative scientific and engineering work and an openness to working on new biological and technical problems

  • Deep domain knowledge of biology, microbiology, biochemistry, and statistical analysis of complex datasets

  • Experience in learning complex software tools and demonstrated ability to write simple software code

Kingdom’s values

  • Collaborate with kindness

  • Critique by creating

  • Empower the team

  • Focus our energy

  • Learn through curiosity

  • Take complete ownership

  • Uphold scientific integrity

PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS

Practical experience aligned to the competencies above, including:

  • PhD in bioengineering, synthetic biology, biochemistry, microbiology, or a related field

  • Or 3-5+ years of relevant industry experience

  • Proficiency in Python, C, C+, or another programming language 

Other qualifications and interests (preferred but not required):

  • Prior experience with LIMS, automation scheduling software (e.g. Green Button Go, Overlord, Cellario, or similar) 

  • Prior experience in implementing and operating liquid handling robotics (e.g. Beckman, Hamilton)

Not sure you met 100% of our qualifications? If you believe you could excel in this role, we encourage you to apply. We are dedicated to considering a broad array of candidates, including those with diverse workplace experiences and backgrounds.

WHY JOIN KINGDOM SUPERCULTURES?

  • Meaningful work: Support and enable a team that is expanding the frontiers of science while making a positive impact on consumer health and environmental sustainability.

  • Valued leader of a high-performing team: Become a leader of a fast-growing team that rewards high performance with advancement opportunities and greater responsibilities.

  • Growth and learning: Tackle people opportunities with an organization that will learn and grow alongside you. 

  • Ownership and autonomy: Have and feel responsibility for growing Kingdom’s automation capacities.

COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS

  • Competitive salary and generous equity upside

  • Fully-paid medical, vision, and dental insurance

  • Unlimited PTO

  • Snacks, fruit, and drinks (including nitro cold brew coffee!) in the office

  • 401k participation

  • Parental leave

  • Commuter benefits: subsidized Metrocards, free Citibike, free parking

Technology

Our team brings together world-class expertise in the microbiome and genomics fields, who have published nearly a dozen first-author papers in top journals like Science, Nature Biotech, and Nature Methods. Our technology platform allows us to access broad swaths of unexplored food-borne microbial diversity, to screen these strains for novel functionalities, and to assemble them into novel, stable microbial communities using proprietary experimental and computational approaches

Our work is defining an entirely new engineering discipline, in which we are building the capacity to design new microbial communities from scratch within a nearly infinite design space. This combines robotic and software automation, high throughput screening, microbiology, data science and statistics, machine learning, and genomics and in a highly collaborative and interdisciplinary environment.

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