Senior Synthetic Organic Chemist - Military veterans preferred

General Dynamics Information Technology (


  full-time   employee

Silver Spring
United States

GDIT is seeking a Senior Synthetic Organic Chemist to support the mission of the Experimental Therapeutics (ET) Branch of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR). The mission of the WRAIR Branch of Experimental Therapeutics is to discover and develop new pharmaceutical agents to protect military members from death, disease, and injury. The Branch is the nation’s primary developer of new drugs to prevent and/or treat malaria and leishmaniasis. Collectively, ET engages in drug discovery, drug efficacy and mechanism evaluation, and formal preclinical and clinical development. This position supports the Synthetic Chemistry section within the Department of Drug Development. Specific responsiiblities include:


  • Design routes of chemical synthesis for designed analogs directed toward specific therapeutic targets.
  • Synthesize compounds of interest in support of lead optimization programs as directed by the lead chemist.
  • Optimize synthetic methods to synthesize compounds if necessary.
  • Purify the products of multiple-step syntheses on milligram to gram reaction scales.
  • Characterize the products of chemical reactions using appropriate instrumentation including, but not limited to, NMR, IR spectroscopy, mass spectrometry and elemental analysis
  • Prepare compounds of interest for shipment to biology test systems in support of the lead optimization team
  • Register and submit compounds to the LIMS
  • Meet on a bi-weekly basis with key administrative and technical staff to receive performance tasks, report progress, and troubleshoot technical issues.
  • Prepare monthly status reports as well as detailed reports on the procedures, protocols, and experimental data in a suitable format for publication in relevant scientific journals and/or patent disclosure if applicable.
  • Maintain laboratory chemical inventory according to established WRAIR procedures.
  • Maintain a safe, well-stocked and clean laboratory in accordance with WRAIR technical and safety protocols.
  • Prepare purchase orders as needed to support synthesis of new chemical entities and to maintain laboratory inventory.
  • Support any laboratory activities, to include general upkeep as well as chemical storage and movement and equipment usage and maintenance.
  • Report all maintenance issues of both the laboratory and equipment to the proper WRAIR facilities or medical maintenance personnel according to WRAIR protocols.
  • Train and mentor new laboratory chemists supporting this task, in accordance with all WRAIR laboratory procedures and protocols. Assist with in-processing and orientation of new laboratory chemists supporting this task.
  • Ensure that the appropriate PPE is utilized, and be aware of and observe appropriate safety and occupational health rules and regulations and procedures developed by WRAIR staff.
  • Attend all training, including but not limited to safety training relative to this task and report any infractions of safety procedures to the facility Safety Officer.


5+ years experience


  • Three years of experience working as a synthetic organic chemist.
  • Experience working for a government agency, preferably DoD or pharmaceutical industry.
  • Expert working knowledge of organic chemical synthesis, understanding of organic synthesis including but not limited to inert-handling techniques, medium scale (up to 100 gram) reactions, purification techniques including flash column chromatography, analytical and preparative HPLC, and use of appropriate analytical instruments to characterize compounds such as nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), infrared spectrometry (IR), mass spectrometry (MS), and elemental analysis for compound characterization.
  • Able to use Microsoft Office programs including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, and should be familiar with SciFinder, Pub-Med, ChemDraw or some other suitable chemical notation program.
  • Able to communicate clearly and effectively, whether orally or in writing.
  • Experience publishing scientific papers in a peer-reviewed recognized medicinal/ chemistry journals




For more than 50 years, General Dynamics Information Technology has served as a trusted provider of information technology, systems engineering, training and professional services to customers across federal, state, and local governments, and in the commercial sector. Over 40,000 GDIT professionals deliver enterprise solutions, manage mission-critical IT programs and provide mission support services worldwide. GDIT is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or veteran status, or any other protected class.




PHD in organic chemistry or related discipline from an accredited university strongly preferred.