Assistant Director of Public Health Laboratory Services (#EH4085)
$63.54-$77.23 Hourly / $11,013.06-$13,386.45 Monthly / $132,156.83-$160,637.45 Yearly


Under administrative direction, and in compliance with state and federal regulations, assists in planning, organizing, and directing the operations and services of the San Joaquin County Public Health Laboratory, which is both a high-complexity and bio-terrorism reference laboratory certified by the State of California; provides technical and operational leadership for public health laboratory staff; communicates with state and federal agencies regarding public health laboratory activities; and does related work as required.


This is an at-will, single-position management-level class that is exempt from the San Joaquin County Civil Service system.  The incumbent is responsible for providing high-level administrative and operational support to the Director of Public Health Laboratory Services, as well as administrative management pertaining to laboratory human resources, fiscal, staff development, and other related matters.  Work is performed in accordance with general policies, procedures, and legal requirements. The incumbent develops, coordinates, oversees and participates in assigned projects based on organizational goals, objectives, policies and priorities and ensures that assigned activities are completed in a timely and efficient manner.  The incumbent is expected to model a strong work ethic and leadership skills, including accountability for oneself and others.


This specification is a general guideline for the class.  The statements below are not restrictive, and the responsibilities and duties assigned to a position in this class may expand beyond those identified in this specification. 

  • Assists the Director of Public Health Laboratory Services in managing, directing, and administering the operations, programs and services of the County’s Public Health Laboratory within Public Health Services; exercises good judgment and makes sound decisions in managing assigned areas and functions; assists with planning, organizing and directing work pertaining to a wide variety of general and specialized testing programs, including those identified as “highly complex” by the federal Centers for Disease Control; consults with departmental staff, private physicians, clinical laboratory scientists, and other related health personnel in the performance and interpretation of laboratory diagnostic testing related to public health; may direct and/or participate in the performance of the more difficult tests and procedures.
  • Recommends short- and long-term laboratory goals and objectives, as well as program objectives and performance standards; recommends policies and procedures related to laboratory operations and directs their implementation; oversees the preparation and maintenance of laboratory procedure manuals.
  • Recommends and implements internal quality control standards, protocols and controls; analyzes quality control data related to program operations and activities in order to evaluate operational effectiveness and compliance; recommends process improvements and modifications as necessary; recommends operational adjustments in response to changes in program directives and/or client needs.
  • Coordinates clinical trials and assessments as well as related data development, analysis and reporting; develops, maintains and interprets laboratory data to evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of laboratory operations, the accomplishment of strategic objectives, and the compliance of laboratory programs with County, state, and federal codes, regulations, guidelines, policies and procedures and protocols.
  • Assists in coordinating with local, regional, state and federal officials to meet contractual obligations for regional testing services, the Level B Bioterrorism Response Program, and/or other special programs and activities.
  • Assists with the development, preparation, and administration of the laboratory operating, capital and special program budgets in accordance with strategic fiscal goals, objectives, and cost efficiency options; prepares cost estimates/projections and justifications for requested resources and expenditure plans; estimates revenues; analyzes bids and contracts for supplies, services and equipment and prepares recommendations; negotiates and coordinates contractual agreements for laboratory services; recommends approval of billings, payment plans, and other expenditures, including the purchase of equipment and supplies in a manner that ensures efficient inventory control.
  • Supervises subordinate personnel, including subordinate supervisors, and recommends staff selection; monitors work in progress and completed work to verify accuracy, proper work methods and techniques, and to ensure compliance with applicable standards and specifications; ensures that staff receive appropriate in-service and other training; initiates, recommends and implements disciplinary actions as necessary; assists with the development and utilization of laboratory information systems and the use, operation and maintenance of other laboratory equipment.
  • Provides technical expertise and consultation to department staff, community physicians, nursing personnel, laboratory technicians, hospitals, schools, businesses and the general public regarding public health diagnostic and other laboratory processes; provides testimony and affidavits as an expert witness as required; responds to complaints or concerns as assigned and resolves issues.
  • Maintains professional knowledge in applicable areas and keeps abreast of changes in job-related rules, statutes, laws and new business trends; makes recommendations for the implementation of changes; reads and interprets professional literature; attends training programs, workshops, meetings and seminars; represents the County in meetings and participates on task forces and committees as assigned.
  • May perform laboratory testing procedures for bacteriology, parasitology, mycobacteriology, serology, and virology; reviews and approves lab testing reports; researches, formulates, develops and applies testing procedures to meet current public health needs.



Licenses/Certificates:  1) Possession of a valid certificate as a Public Health Microbiologist issued by the State of California Department of Public Health; AND 2) Possession of a valid certificate by a board approved by the federal Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA).  (See the California Health and Safety Code, Division 101, Part 3, Chapter 2, Article 5, Section 101160.)  

Experience:  Two years performing clinical and microbiology tests and analyses in a public health laboratory.


Education:  Possession of a Doctorate degree from an accredited university in a chemical, physical, biological, or laboratory science, including all undergraduate and graduate coursework required to meet the requirements to be appointed as a director of a public health laboratory as identified by the State of California, Department of Public Health, Laboratory Field Services (see the California Code of Regulations, Title 17, Chapter 3, Subchapter 1, Article 3).


Principles and practices related to the management and administration of public health laboratory including budgeting, organizational development, supervision and personnel administration; current trends, concepts, and methods in public health laboratory science including principles, practices, and testing procedures in bacteriology, serology, mycology, parasitology, virology and other areas of microbiology; state and federal regulations related to the operation of public health laboratories; laboratory quality control principles and techniques; laboratory testing parameters and results yielding positive or negative conclusions; causes and methods of transmission of communicable diseases; research methods; test development and evaluation techniques; work review and methods analysis techniques; social, political, and economic issues influencing program administration; statistical methodologies utilized in quality control procedures; modern office automation technology and pertinent software programs.


Assist with planning and administering the programs and activities of a public health laboratory and assume responsibility for the laboratory in the absence of the Director of Public Health Laboratory Services; interpret and explain laboratory practices and laws governing public health laboratory operations; direct public health laboratory testing and operations; provide appropriate and effective leadership and management over diverse staff teams; exercise good judgment and make sound managerial decisions; exercise analytical and critical thinking to analyze complex problems and recommend appropriate solutions; establish and maintain effective working relationships with physicians, public health professional staff, government officials, contractors, vendors and others; perform complex research and analyses on complex technical issues; develop quantitative and qualitative data, draw logical conclusions, and prepare complex statistical and narrative reports; issue oral and written directives of a technical nature; ensure the quality and quantity of laboratory output; maintain accurate records and documentation of actions taken; maintain confidentiality of information; operate computers and related software; communicate effectively, both orally and in writing.


Mobility - Frequent sitting for long periods of time while operating a keyboard.  Lifting - Occasional lifting of 30 lbs. or less. Vision - Constant use of overall visual capabilities; frequent need for use of color perception, hand/eye coordination, reading and/or close-up work; Dexterity - Frequent holding, grasping and writing; Hearing/Talking - Constant hearing and talking in person and on the telephone;  Special Requirements - may require working weekends/nights; working alone; Emotional/Psychological - Constant concentration and decision‑making duties; frequent emergency situations, public contact and ability to work independently.

San Joaquin County complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and, upon request, will consider reasonable accommodations to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential job functions.

CLASS: EH4085; EST: 4/6/2015;