Job Overview


The incumbent serves as the Head of the Diagnostic Services Section (DSS), at the Foreign Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (FADDL), National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL). The function of this unit is to develop diagnostic competence for a wide variety of foreign animal diseases (FAD), perform developmental studies on new FAD diagnostic modalities, provide training programs in the recognition and diagnosis of FAD to participants from the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), State Veterinary departments, veterinary colleges, academicians, zoological parks, and foreign countries.

You can make a difference! The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Marketing and Regulatory Programs (MRP) needs bright, energetic and committed professionals to facilitate the domestic and international marketing of U.S. agricultural products and to protect the health and care of animals and plants in the United States. MRP offers an array of occupations and is committed to diversity in the workplace. We operate in domestic and global markets.  Be part of an organization that protects the health and agriculture of the American people. Join our team! 

APHIS is an emergency response agency. This means that all Agency employees may be asked or assigned to participate in rotating temporary duty assignments to support emergency programs at some time during their careers with APHIS. For details click: APHIS Emergency Response


The duties described are for the full-performance level. At developmental grade levels, assignments will be of more limited scope, performed with less independence and limited complexity. The duties may include, but are not limited to:

  • Serves as a VMO and technical expert in the study and diagnosis of foreign animal diseases and; as supervisor of the Section coordinates all activities required for diagnostic work.
  • Provides a specialized expertise in the differential diagnosis of exotic and domestic species of mycoplasma, foot-and-mouth disease (FMD), vesicular stomatitis (VS), vesicular exanthema of swine (VES), swine vesicular disease (SVD) and serotyping of approximately 60 subtypes of FMD.
  • Completes diagnostic and safety tests on samples of animal origin and related products.
  • Maintains quality control of diagnostic materials used.
  • Evaluate diagnostic test methods and respective protocols.
  • Develops new and/or improves existing laboratory procedures for detection of FAD agents and their antibodies, including protocol documentation.
  • Develops visual aids and maintains an expertise on FAD to develop and provide leadership in conducting specialized seminars and training sessions given to members of Federal/State agencies, universities, zoological parks, and foreign countries in the recognition and diagnosis of diseases exotic to the United States.
  • Plan, formulate, develop, and coordinate all aspects of FADDL’s role as a reference laboratory for the National Animal Health Laboratory Network (NAHLN).
  • Support the NAHLN as an expert on diagnostic testing and validation of assays used to detect exotic animal diseases (FAD) and collaborate closely with the NAHLN coordinator to establish exotic animal testing capabilities throughout this network.